CIDM e-newsletter
Volume 2, Issue 8
August 2002

A monthly e-newsletter from the Center for Information-Development Management (CIDM)
JoAnn T. Hackos, PhD, CIDM Director

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News & Events

The Gilbane Conference on Content Management at Seybold on September 11-12, 2002, in San Francisco, CA, where Dr. Hackos is presenting on Single-Source Content Management: If, Why, and How on September 12, 2002.

For more information, visit www.seybold365.comsf2002

Best Practices 2002 on September 30-October 2, 2002, in Galveston, TX.

For more information, visit

Content Management Europe: Strategies for Single Sourcing on October 14-15, 2002, with a post conference workshop on October 16, 2002, at the Grand Hotel Mercure Royal Crown in Brussels, Belgium.

For more information, visit

Upcoming Workshops
The CIDM sponsors the following workshops between September and October 2002. Sign up now:

Developing a Strategy for Minimalism: Creating Manuals People Will Use
JoAnn Hackos, PhD,
September 5-6, 2002, Greenville, SC

User and Task Analysis for Information Design
Bill Hackos, PhD,
September 25-26, 2002, Arlington, VA,
October 8-9, 2002, Lexington, MA

Developing a Single-Sourcing Strategy
JoAnn Hackos, PhD,
October 8-9, 2002, Houston, TX

For more information on these and other workshops, visit the Seminars in Usable Design Web site at

Are You Part of a Leadership Pipeline?
JoAnn T. Hackos, PhD
CIDM Director

For two years after I completed my term as STC president, I served as chair of the nominating committee. During my tenure, I developed a philosophy of nominations. Everyone the committee nominated for every open position had to have leadership potential. Those nominated for the director-sponsor position had to be capable of becoming STC president sometime in the future.

In an article in the May 2002 edition of theHarvard Management Update, Stephen Nelson argues that companies need to think about growing leadership talent in much the same way. They need to look closely at their strategic goals, analyze the leadership skills and abilities that are needed to accomplish those goals, and run a gap analysis. The gap analysis looks at the difference between the capabilities of existing leaders and the capabilities needed to achieve the goals. If the executives identify a leadership gap, they need to take immediate action to address the problem.

Read the full article

Try a Few FAQs
Jonathan Price
President, The Communication Circle, LLC

On the Web, people prefer a conversation to a lecture. And traditional Help, even when it is mounted on a Web site, energized with Dynamic HTML and JavaScript, linked to embedded customer assistance, and delivered as active server pages—well even then, Help seems like a lecture. But a set of Frequently Asked Questions, even when done poorly, seems like a conversation.

Read the full article

If I Could Add 5% to Your Profit Margin
Robert N. Phillips
CEO, Lasotell Pty Ltd.

If the above statement were true, would you hire me? If I could add only 0.5% to your profit margin, would you hire me? You might think that the answers to these questions are no-brainers, but it is amazing how many companies do not think in terms of what impact hiring someone has on the bottom line.

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My Company is Aiming for Growth—How Can I Contribute?
Vesa Purho
Development Manager, Nokia

When companies aim for growth, they need to select a strategy to reach their target. Changing strategies has, or should have, an effect on documentation. Documentation can support a company in reaching its goals if documentation personnel understand what the company is aiming for. A common tool for selecting strategies is the Ansoff Matrix. The following article summarises the Ansoff Matrix and presents some ideas on how it affects documentation.

Read the full article