I’ve spent these 11 years writing user manuals, shaking the heck up of the old WoWs. Back then, a technical writer was given a “raw text” written by a developer to be re-formatted into a manual. I sort of refused. Yikes, pretty arrogant from a school girl, huh? But I’d go and talk to the people instead. The programmers, the product managers, the consultants even. I must have been a pain in the butt – I get it. Some newbie asking them to go through what already stood right there in writing, having them explain, and show, and explain again since – of course – I didn’t really thoroughly get it the first time. But I always really wanted to dig deeper, find out what the point was, why we were developing the features the way we were. Because that way, I understood – for real.
"I don’t know it all. But I know those who know, and they totally rock their game."
The amount of knowledge gone through my keyboard during all these years is incredible. With the help of these awesome people I get to work with, I’ve written some hard-core help topics from transformer bank components to managing found faults at pole inspections to defining map layer visibility on mobile devices to calculating revised key figures for investment planning. Phew! Don’t get me wrong, I don’t know it all. In fact, I don’t know most of it. But I know those who know, and I know they totally rock their game.
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So it happens that over the years, many of these people grew into liking me. And I’ve grown into appreciating the immense expertise they have, each in their own field. So now that I’ve surprised myself by leaping into marketing (still not quite sure how that ever happened!), I’m taking in the challenge of bringing the fruits of this collaboration from the hidden depths of our user guides out into the wide open. And not just to let you know what they know, but also who they are behind it all. The odds are it’ll rock my world. With any luck, it’ll give you some food for thought, too.
I could use some help, though: follow along!
PS. These days, at least to my knowledge, nobody in our product development writes raw texts for technical writers anymore. Instead, they all prefer to – show and explain.
PPS. I don’t actually know how to rock. But I do love my tango!
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