Consider the bridge-the cliched symbol used by orators, academicians, ombudsmen, and other communicators the world over. Nestled in our tech comm / content strategy community, we find a lot of uses for the bridge. Helping other fields understand our value… expressing the need to cross over to other organizational functions … motivating personnel towards an uncertain future … that atrociously expensive dental procedure that allows you to continue consuming foods other than pudding.
One thing about bridges though. They have little utility unless some living thing takes action… you have to cross it, build it, pave it, put a toll booth in… you get the picture. Bridges (and a surprising number of other cliches) require you to be proactive. I’m still surprised by the number of folks working in tech comm who shy away from proactivity. Not the complaining about the lack of respect part of it, just the actual effort involved in walking down the hall and telling a colleague, “Hey, I’d be happy to work with you on that.” I see some evidence that this attitude is changing, but I fear that many are too far behind the curve to ever catch up. Because at the same time, those horrible dark-side folks in marketing and promotions have discovered a the bandwagon of “content marketing.” They get the importance of content, but often miss a big concept–good content does more for your organization than lots of mediocre content.
Most of the folks that know me, know that I came from the dark side of marketing. Then I went onto other dark sides like project management, knowledge management, change management, and a host of other managements. In every one of those managements, I found a need for good content, well produced. And the concept of a unified content strategy, first introduced to me by Ann Rockley, continues to be the goal at the end of that bridge that should unite various teams across the enterprise.
I crossed a few bridges around the internet this week and found a whole lot of marvelous content that crosses between some closely related functions, including:
- Simplify Your UX Through Reduction
- Why do I need a support desk?
- Calculating the production of high-quality content
- Pluto and the art of patience
Put on your hiking shoes and getting ready to cross a few bridges in the latest edition of Tech Writer This Week.