Re: RE: Squashed egos... it ain't pretty!

Subject: Re: RE: Squashed egos... it ain't pretty!
From: "keith marquart" <keithm -at- nordam -dot- com>
To: barry -dot- kieffer -at- exgate -dot- tek -dot- com, techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com
Date: Wed, 06 Oct 1999 15:00:54 -0500

After nearly two days of "Squashed Egos....." I have concluded that Tech Writing is probably the most misunderstood and under-appreciated profession since "Motherhood". How personal performance is perceived and how a Tech. Writing department is viewed as a "Value Add" to a project can drive one to frustration.

I choose to use my energy to be the best MARKETING person for myself and my department. This means using patience with the "Clueless" to help educate them to understand the "Value Add" of a job well done. If the customer "does not" or "can not" understand the written instructions on how to use the
"Widget" they just purchased, they will flood the Customer Service or Tech Support Departments with calls. Or worse, return the "Widget" for a refund and tell 10 friends about his experience. These are hidden costs that will far out weigh the "investment" to WRITE IT RIGHT.

As Technical Communicators let's be Pro-active to market ourselves and encourage those around us every chance we get. Life is too short to be taken to Seriously.



Keith Marquart
Technical Writer
Specifications Engineering
The NORDAM Group- Repair Division
keithm -at- nordam -dot- com

>>> <barry -dot- kieffer -at- exgate -dot- tek -dot- com> 10/06 1:06 PM >>>
The ignorance I have to deal with goes something like this:

Program Manager:
"We need to cut down on the time and cost of all of the documentation you
create. Instead of writing all of the (paper) manuals, how much time and
money can we save if you JUST put everything online?"

Gee Mr. Program Manager, if I "JUST" put everything online, I don't have to
write a thing! It will just be there (somehow).

Where Lisamarie almost blew out an artery, I stood there dumbfounded. I
never in all of my career realized that instead of writing all of that
stuff, I could "JUST" put it online.

Now that we have online documentation, we technical writers do not have to
write anything anymore. Take it from my astute program manager: "Just put it
online!"

Barry (stealing a line form Elvis Costello)
"I used to be disgusted, now I'm just amused"



> Lisamarie Babik writes:
> I recently got into a grudge match over the time line I'd established for
> a
> particular document's delivery. My boss said, and I quote:
>
> "Given the choice between a quality document that
> will take 4 months, and a mediocre one that will take
> 4 weeks, I'll choose the mediocre one *every time*!"
>
> I swear, I just about blew an artery when he said that.
>
> There is so little understanding of what our job entails...it's
> frustrating,
> plain and simple. I hate the fact that I am forced to constantly produce
> less
> than my best work.
>

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