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TOPIC: From the NomComm: Difficult assignments

From the NomComm: Difficult assignments 10 months 3 weeks ago #105

Q: Give an example of when you worked on an extremely difficult assignment with little or no resources. What did you do and what was the result?

Alyssa Fox

In my job, I’m responsible for more than 50 projects across about 20 products, so negotiating and prioritizing skills are a must. On a recent project, the writer for the team had multiple communication problems with the development manager, did not understand a lot of the technical issues in the product, and was not motivated to improve the quality of her documentation. The end result was a poorly written user guide that didn’t address many areas that confused the user. When the writer left the company, we had to find a way to fill her spot without hiring anyone else, and research and rewrite the documentation to ensure it met our quality standards and answered customer questions, all on a very tight timeline. I assigned two of my most senior team members to set aside some of their time to evaluate the issues in the guide, research the correct solutions, and rewrite the documentation while juggling their regular projects. While I would not typically assign senior writers to a small project that really only requires part of a junior writer’s time, their skills were most needed when something needed to be completely redone very quickly. As those team members have worked on this rewrite, they are documenting processes to help the entire project team work together to prevent similar issues in the future.

Leading by example is imperative. I deliver what I say I’m going to deliver, when I say I’m going to deliver it, in all facets of my life. In addition, I work closely with my team to improve their skills. As a result, my team members have a reputation for having an outstanding work ethic and are leaders on their project teams.
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