On October 21, the New England Chapter of the STC met at the Hilton Garden Inn in Burlington, Massachusetts for its second chapter meeting of the 2015-2016 year.
In his talk titled “Getting Buy-In for Initiatives,” Greg Bartlett spoke on his experience initiating change in the TechComm workplace. With nearly 30 years of field experience managing technical communication groups and organizations, Greg covered an overview of strategies he’s learned for initiating effective workplace change.
Greg began by reviewing a number of factors to consider when laying the groundwork for new initiative support. Unhelpful practices like maintaining an “us against them” mentality can divide management and personnel and impede communication. Abandoning this type of thinking from the start helps us connect with colleagues and communicate our ideas more effectively. This can make a big difference when gathering support for our initiatives.
Greg went on to outline the stages of development for initiators and approvers and ways to effectively connect the two. An important part of the process involves seeking out opportunities to investigate our own ideas and resources to generate feedback valuable to the strength and success of our initiative. Greg illustrated his points by offering first-hand examples of success and failure initiating workplace change. The talk concluded with a session of audience participation to further explore the lessons of Greg’s case-study examples.
“Greg speaks from great experience, since he’s been both an individual contributor and a documentation manager,” said Nancy Alison, President of the New England Chapter. “His talk was informative, practical, and engaging, and there were excellent questions and discussions at the end. I came away with several ideas to try out at my own job.”
The evening also included an activity to generate ideas for future chapter meeting events and topics led by council member Paul Duarte.