Re: Defining your role

Subject: Re: Defining your role
From: John Ahlstrom <jahlstro -at- CISCO -dot- COM>
Date: Tue, 3 Dec 1996 11:50:06 -0800

Ginna Watts wrote:

> In other words, defend my existence
> and job to the rest of the team.

I don;t think you are being asked to DEFEND
your existence or your job. I think you are
right that you are being asked to "bring the
rest of the team on board", but that is not
defending yourself or your job. It is
explaining your job and your (possible)
outputs.

This is a lot for a relatively new employee
and more for a fairly new tech writer (you
didn't say if this is your first job). But
I think this is a strong vote of confidence in
you not a request for you to defend your life and
professional worth. (I don't know your boss, maybe
I am naive, but I would be inclined to give them
[sic] the benefit of the doubt.) Yes, it will
be a lot of work; yes, you are a writer not a
salesdroid; yes, ... but if I had asked you
to do that, it would have been because of my
confidence in you not an attempt to make you defend
yourself. Unfortunately, (and it took me probably
15 years to discover it) we all have to be salesdroids
much more that we would like, and selling our selves and
our ideas is an important part of what we have to do.

Good luck.

Let us know how you make out.

John Ahlstrom

"When a language critic complains about a word or construction, you can
be fairly certain that the target expression has already become common
enough to be considered standard and correct, and that if you read or
listen long enough, you will find the offending bit of language in the
language critic's speech or writing."
Dennis Baron
Guide to Home Language Repair


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