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It appears that the job has fallen upon the tech writer because of a
perception that she is a secretary. Back in the days when there were
secretaries, the boss would ask the secretary to write the letter, and
the boss would review and sign it. Apparently the TW is the only person
around who vaguely resembles a secretary: she knows how to type, makes
fewer than the usual number of grammatical errors, and has some idea of
how to put together a letter. Oh, and she is female.
The TW should do the job *exactly* the way a secretary would...
1. The letter the customer receives should come from the top manager,
should be printed out on company stationery, and be personally
signed--in ink, with a pen wielded by PHB's own grubby paw. It should
not be an e-mail.
2. The letter should show the customer why he should continue to do
business with the company in as friendly and helpful a manner as
possible. The customer, upon reading the letter, should feel that PHB
(the manager) is knowledgable, helpful, and his friend--perhaps his best
friend in the entire industry.
3. The TW's name should not appear anywhere on the letter. Instead, at
the bottom of the letter, on the left, should appear the mysterious
notation, "PHB:dsh". That's the boss's initials, followed by the
The TW may or may not wish to explain to PHB the distinction between a
TW and a secretary, f'rinstance how a TW normally commands at least two
or three times the hourly rate of a secretary.
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