As technical communication specialists, we are tasked with the responsibility of collecting the information and providing it to our users. As we know, our main source of information are the developers and engineers (the SMEs) who provide us with the information that we need.
We need to establish proper relationships with the SMEs in our companies so that we can collect the information that we need. A poor working relationship increases our difficulty in getting effective information. The difficulty is that occasionally there is an adversarial relationship between technical writers and SMEs, who are not willing to spend hours struggling with someone who will not understand what they are saying.
We have to develop proper strategies that train the SMEs to recognize that we are the ones who can make their jobs easier.
Attendees discover that SMEs, like all other people have different personality types, and require different approaches. We will discuss some good strategies to use when speaking with the experts so as to maximize the quality of the information, maximize the use of their time, and finally, how we can rise up and make them consider us as true partners in their work.
Ezriel Yellin has been in the technical communication field for over 25 years, in a variety of industries, and has worked with many different developers, engineers, and project managers. In addition to preparing documentation, he has also worked as a trainer and a manager. Ezriel serves on the tekom-Israel Initiative Committee.
Ezriel has a degree in Urban Planning from McGill University, a graduate diploma in Business Management, and an advanced degree in Religious Studies.