RE: Caught between tech writing and marketing

Subject: RE: Caught between tech writing and marketing
From: melonie -dot- mcmichael -at- amd -dot- com
To: Emily_Cotlier -at- cardlink -dot- co -dot- nz, techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com
Date: Tue, 23 Nov 1999 08:07:00 -0600


Been there, done that. Luckily, I'm not doing it now. Once
I had it down, though, it wasn't too bad.

You were not clear on what kind of problems this was causing you.
I can only tell you my experience which was having two managers
battle over my time and abilities.

Balance, boundaries and MYOB are the keys (yes, this does sound
like a counseling session, that is because personalities tend to be
the problem). The first thing I figured out: when the engineering manager
complains about the way the marketing manager is doing something (or vice
versa) tell them to go tell the other manager. That was a hard lesson: I got
caught in a couple of battles.

Anytime you balance two entities, it requires some finesse. I am getting
to relearn this since I just picked up a second product line. Each group is
afraid that I will let their work fall by the wayside. It takes a sprinkling
"children, you have to share" with "don't worry, we will do whatever it
to get your work done".

Setting priorities is a requirement in this situation. How does the top 5
in group A mesh with the top 5 projects in group B? A note on this: I have
discovered that it is better to work a little on group A's projects and then
little on group B's. That way, you can tell them you are making progress
they ask about the project. They tend to have a fit when they hear their
is waiting on completion of the other group's project.

The hardest task of all: putting down the fun stuff to do the important
stuff. I love
the marketing stuff and can get lost in it for ages, but often the technical
has usually has a higher priority.

Good luck and have fun!!

Melonie McMichael
Tech Writer
mailto:melonie -dot- mcmichael -at- amd -dot- com

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Emily_Cotlier -at- cardlink -dot- co -dot- nz [SMTP:Emily_Cotlier -at- cardlink -dot- co -dot- nz]
> Sent: Monday, November 22, 1999 5:40 PM
> Subject: Caught between tech writing and marketing
> I am a technical writer who is working under the aegis of a marketing
> department, all of 3 people including me, at a small company of 60 people.
> This happened because of internal politics (and my own self interest,
> since
> the Marketing manager is that precious rarity, a good manager). As time
> goes on, though, and our IT division improves in management, I am starting
> to feel a conflict between involvement in IT and involvement in marketing
> projects. I'm working on it from my end, but I'm wondering; are other tech
> writers working in both the tech writing and marketing areas of their
> companies? And do they feel torn?

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