RE: Review meetings vs. distributing copies

Subject: RE: Review meetings vs. distributing copies
From: "Victoria Wroblewski" <victoria -dot- wroblewski -at- eagletest -dot- com>
To: "Downing, David" <DavidDowning -at- Users -dot- com>, <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 17 Jul 2008 13:18:47 -0500

-----Original Message-----
From: Downing, David
Sent: Thursday, July 17, 2008 12:33 PM
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Subject: Review meetings vs. distributing copies

Over the past several years, I have noticed a phenomenon connected with
the age-old problem of getting technical reviews from SMEs. If I just
distribute copies of a document, either hardcopy or electronic via
email, and ask for comments back, I always get nada or almost nada. If I
call a review meeting, people will accept the meeting invitation and
come to the meeting. In fact, I just had the same group of people accept
a meeting invite who had hitherto not been giving me any feedback when I
just sent them copies of the document through email.

The question is -- why does this happen?

In places where I've seen the night & day shift when going from
distributed copies to review meetings, it's been one of two things...

1 - Very busy engineers who are always putting out new fires, and even
when they try to put time aside to review docs, they get interrupted.
When there is a set meeting, they can go to the meeting and give 100%
focus (until someone pulls them out to put out an inferno of an issue).

2 - If it's a place where the documentation is so low on the totem pole
of priorities that it's underground, meetings provide a very visible
example of who is not contributing as they should. You don't want to be
the one person/group that is not represented at that meeting, do you?
Everyone else in the room will be able to tell you're the person/group
is holding things up, just by seeing you're not there.

- V

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Review meetings vs. distributing copies: From: Downing, David

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