Over the course of a conference season, we can often see the emergence of some common themes. Lately a lot of focus has been on breaking down silos or barriers between parts of the organization that have content creation responsibilities. Indeed the whole silo-busting business mantra has played out for several years to the point where a few brave souls, like Shel Holtz, venture to ask if silos and the need to break them are even the right metaphor for what businesses are trying to do. Organizational design gurus look for the best ways to build organizations that enhance communication, collaboration and innovation in pursuit of business objectives. Years of debate rage over the relative superiority of matrixed, flat, systemic, organic and even holocatric approaches to organizing the people side of the business. In much the same way that Whirlers and many others in the content world debate on where content creators belong in the grand scheme. So we thought it was time to take a pulse of where the folks who do the content work really sit in today’s world.
The concept of bringing all the folks who create content together under one area of the business appeals to many of us. It’s not just the familiar themes of productivity and effeciency from centralized repositories and reusing and repurposing content. The idea of hearing other perspectives and generating new ideas seems like a paradise to anyone who struggles with finding SMEs or maintaining relevant and useful information that’s scattered among hundreds of digital and physical locations. However, it’s a concept far from being realized in most of the businesses we work in today.
If you have a long background in technical communication, you may be used to sitting (far away, in a isolated cubicle) in the engineering or development organization. Perhaps you’re moving into content management and strategy and sitting in the marketing group where the focus is on awareness and the buyer journey. Are you in a customer experience-focused organization that values content and design? Or maybe you’ve been in customer service or technical support roles, where excellent content has an important place in reducing call resolution times. Even if it’s none of the above, we’d like to hear about where you and your team fit in the organization. Vote in the poll, and post a comment about where you’ve found you’ve had the most or least influence, the variety of content you have a hand in producing, or what content creation nirvana would look like to you. It’s a great place to begin to uncover the real value proposition of strong and effective content delivery.