RE: Lack of self-awareness in a writer...what to do

Subject: RE: Lack of self-awareness in a writer...what to do
From: "Gilbert, Brian" <BGILBER -at- transunion -dot- com>
To: <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Mon, 2 Jul 2007 10:41:02 -0500

I agree with just about everything Pro TechWriter states. Document
issues, pay attention to your team, talk to HR, team with writer
yourself, and follow up.

One thing that I do a little differently is the first warning. I agree
that you need to meet with the writer and meet with someone else
present. Be careful not to use generalizations without specifics to
back it up. Discuss the issues/problems that you have observed. Talk
about the possible and real consequences of those issues or ask him to
list some of the consequences of those issues and supplement as needed.
Ask him to help you come up with a plan of action to avoid those issues.
Make sure that it's not just a "I'll follow the process next time," but
there are specific observable steps such as

"I will:

Create a checklist of things that I specifically need to do to close out
each project

Give you the list within two business days

Check each item on the list as they are accomplished

Give you the list before I close the project"

If he can't come up with the steps or if you need something else to
happen, make sure that is added to the plan. Schedule a follow-up
meeting to discuss his progress. After that, talk about the consequences
of not following the action items. It is also important to document the
meeting and send him a copy.

One other thing...keep samples of his work and copies of emails (yours,
his, customers, etc.). If there are issues later on, you need to make
sure you have everything documented.

Note: Be careful about the reviews. Grade inflation happens (to me a 3
means meets expectations). This can get you into trouble later on. If
he meets expectations, why is he being let go (if you have to go that

-----Original Message-----
Subject: Re: Lack of self-awareness in a writer...what to do


4. Time for the first warning. List all of the areas that must be
improved, and exactly what must be done to do so. (Such as, have
appropriate reviews before releasing documentation.) Meet with the
writer. If you can have your department head or someone from HR attend
with you, do it. Do *not* do this alone. You need a witness. During the
meeting, go over each item point by point, and state what you want the
writer to do to correct it, and the time period. Then talk about the
consequences. (Correct this within 30, 60 or 90 days, or you will be let
go.) Explain that he has choices, but these are the consequences of the
choices. The first consequence could be a demotion, if you want to give
him an extra chance.



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FWD: Lack of self-awareness in a writer...what to do: From: TECHWR-L Administrator
Re: Lack of self-awareness in a writer...what to do: From: Pro TechWriter

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