On May 22, 2019, STC-SM welcomed Liz Fraley to Ann Arbor all the way from the STC East Bay Chapter in California. In addition to being a prolific speaker and well-known contributor in the technical communication community, Liz is the founder of Single-Sourcing Solutions, TC Camp, and the TC Dojo. Liz spoke with us for over an hour and engaged us in a fascinating discussion about a topic she understands deeply: The Power of Single-Sourcing. Continue reading “Program Recap: The Power of Single-Sourcing”
On April 28, 2019, the Southeastern Michigan and West Michigan Shores chapters held a joint networking event at the Michigan State Horticulture Gardens and Butterfly House in East Lansing. The April weather was kind to us—we dodged the snow and enjoyed a beautiful, sunny day among the butterflies and plants. Continue reading “Recap: STC-SM & WMS Joint Networking Event”
On Tuesday, March 12, 2019, we gathered at Washtenaw Community College to hear Dave Robbins’ talk, Developing Technical Documentation With Passion and Purpose.
On Wednesday, November 28, an audience of students and technical communications professionals gathered at Lawrence Technological University (LTU) in Southfield for a panel discussion that continued where our October 2017 program left off on discussing the advantages and drawbacks of face-to-face vs. computer-mediated communication. Because our last panel focused primarily on face-to-face interactions, this panel discussed computer-mediated communication (CMC) which, for many of us, is the dominant form of communication in our professional lives. Continue reading “Program Recap: Part 2 of Face-to-face vs. Computer-Mediated Communication Panel Discussion at LTU”
On Wednesday, March 21, we met at Lawrence Technological University for our program Clear and Simple. Our speaker, Ed Lanigan, spoke on how clarifying information and presenting it in a simple way improves our ability to communicate with our readers and creates better customer experiences. Ed has more than 20 years of multi-industry experience focused on customer experience, service performance, and six-sigma continuous improvement, and we are very grateful to have had the opportunity to hear him speak.
This thought-provoking discussion detailed the process of implementing a company-wide strategy for designing and using standardized letter templates that not only improved internal processes by slimming down unnecessary communication but also improved the content of the letters by providing a set of guidelines for writers. With the use of a standardized template, employees in different sections of the company could customize communication to clients while maintaining company branding and ensuring that the information the reader needed to know was visible and well-designed. Continue reading “Program Recap: Clear and Simple With Speaker Ed Lanigan”
On February 27, 2018, STC-SM held a networking event at Doc’s Sports Bar in Livonia, MI. Six of us gathered after work for snacks, beverages, and great conversation. Four were members of the STC-SM chapter and two were non-members. As a friendly reminder, STC-SM welcomes everyone at our events. Membership is not a requirement, so please join us anytime.
During our networking session, we discussed our different careers in technical communications, along with the paths we traveled to become technical communicators. We also discussed the evolving skillsets employers require in a technical communicator, and traded tips about staying current as our profession evolves. Additional topics included technical communications programs at universities (undergraduate and graduate levels) and interview techniques and portfolio building. We wrapped up the evening by talking about ideas for future STC-SM program meetings and services that the STC-SM chapter can provide for technical communicators in our area.
It was truly an enjoyable evening. By the time we left, I personally felt more connected to fellow technical communicators, and to our community at large.
Please check our upcoming events, and come on out. We would love to see you soon!
We sat there frozen! What just happened?
Our speaker, Bonnie Tew, had just shaken her head, said “I am sorry, I just can’t do this…,” and walked out of the room. She had our full attention when she walked back in. She wanted to know if we had ever felt like that. Many of us nodded our heads in agreement.
Face-to-Face Versus Remote Communication
Location: Lawrence Technological University (LTU)
- Maryann Bowen—Senior Manager of Education and User Experience, Saphran, Inc.
- Steven D. Krause—Professor of Rhetoric and Writing, Eastern Michigan University
- Rich Leazer—Documentation and Publishing Manager, Health Information Technology & Services, Michigan Medicine (formerly University of Michigan Health System)
- Catherine Vera-Burgos—Manager of BCN Provider Communications, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan; graduate student at Wayne State University. For the purposes of this panel discussion, Catherine Vera-Burgos was asked to participate from the perspective of a graduate student rather than a manager.
Panel Moderator: Corinne Stavish—Director of the Technical and Professional Communication Program, LTU.
Continue reading “STC-SM October Program Recap”
On Tuesday, March 21, 2017, we convened at Washtenaw Community College for an excellent presentation on creating video with Camtasia, a video editor and screen recorder that produces cross-platform files. TechSmith’s Andrea Perry spoke briefly about the increasing role of video in instructional design, then showed and reverse-engineered the process of creating a short video, Camtasia Behaviors.
Continue reading “Camtasia: a Recap”
On Monday, February 13, panelists John Baker, Rich Leazer, and Bob Powell convened in the Welcome Center at Lawrence Tech to focus on three questions:
- Why does communication matter in the workplace?
- What types of internal and external communication are used?
- How is communication accomplished and what are the trends?
Throughout the discussion, the panel focused on the need to be clear and concise, provide context, and be correct. They considered anticipating users’ needs, understanding audience, and the importance of interpersonal communication regardless of changing technology. Continue reading “Recap of Panel on Trends in Tech Comm”