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March
Newsletter

Dear Readers,
While Texas doesn’t have the typical winter that most states do, I am excited to be moving into Spring - even if it doesn’t quite feel like it yet. Along with the time change coming up on March 10th (everyone get ready to spring forward an hour!), we hope that you’ll set a reminder in your calendars about our March networking event. This is a time to join with fellow technical communicators in the DFW area to meet and greet, and put faces to names. So, bring your business cards, print out a few resumes if you are job hunting, and come prepared to have a good time.

Remember that this first quarter of the year, we are focusing on productivity - and part of being productive is networking. If you make connections with other professionals, you have a resource for questions, potential jobs, and other career advancement opportunities. We invite you to enjoy some resources in this newsletter to help you be productive in your career.

Best Regards,

Lacey Corbin
NTLSC President

The Lowdown

New Logo

We are so excited to announce the new STC Lone Star Chapter logo. A big thanks to graphic designer Carl Slaton for his hard work creating options for our members to vote on. And a thank you to everyone who voted. We can’t wait to see how this logo will be used throughout the years to represent our chapter.

Social Networking Event

Break out the business cards and come get your “happy” on at our monthly Social Networking! Set aside time to unwind with fellow technical communicators and celebrate.

Get back in touch with former colleagues, meet new professionals, and get a feel for what’s happening in the Dallas/Fort Worth technical communication industry. Who says networking events have to be boring and stressful? We’re here to shoot down that idea faster than you can say “Oxford comma!"

This event is FREE for everyone - nonmembers included. Any food and/or drinks ordered are at your own cost.

Click here to register for this event.

How to Be Famous in Your Profession

by John Hedtke

Copyright © 2001 by John V. Hedtke
For reprint rights, contact the author at john@hedtke.com.
This article is used by permission; all rights reserved.

 

John Hedtke is a Fellow of the Society for Technical Communication. He has published 27 books and around 200 magazine articles so far. John lives in Fircrest, WA.

One of the great advantages of the STC—indeed, of any professional organization—is that you can network with other people.  Fame—being well-known and nothing more—can make networking easier and extend your own networking reach. Fortunately, it’s not hard to become famous and it’s a lot of fun.  Here’s how:

1.  Go to things!

Don’t sit home alone watching TV.  Go to conferences. Go to meetings.  Go to lunches and picnics. Participate in group activities.  You don’t need to volunteer for hard jobs—indeed, that’s the harder way to be famous; besides, you’ll be asked plenty about volunteering as time goes by and your fame increases—but do pitch in for things.

2.  Meet people.

Fame is largely a function of who knows you.  Get out and meet as many people in your profession as you can.  As your network grows, you’ll discover that people know you that you don’t know and you don’t even know the people that they say they heard about you from.  You don’t need to be the life of the party, but be interesting.

3.  Listen.

Good listeners are hard to find and will make themselves welcome almost anywhere.  Men in particular have a cultural tendency to interrupt. If you make a point of listening to whatever the other person in a conversation is saying until they’re all done and then replying, you will differentiate yourself from 99% of the rest of the world.  (Hot tip for men: being a good listener will do you worlds of good in your relationships, too.)

4.  Remember people's names.

Everyone likes to think they’re special and they’ve made an impression on someone else.  Try to remember as many names as you can. When you do the business card swap with people, be sure to make notes on business cards about who the person is, when you met, or what you talked about as a trigger to memory, too.

5.  Speak at events.

Fame is largely a function of who knows you.  Being a speaker at events is one excellent way of getting people to know who you are and what you think about things.  Don’t forget to answer questions and talk to as many people afterwards as you can.

6.  Publish articles.

Articles get your name out to a wider range of people than doing public speaking.  It’s also a different audience, too: the folks that hear you speak are the ones who, like you, like going to conferences.  The people who read articles are going to be the ones who stay at home (and the ones who go to the conferences and enjoy learning everything they can about the profession).

7.  Have some opinions.

Having opinions is part of being human.  You don’t have to tailor your opinions to what is popular, but you should be willing to discuss your point of view with other people.  

8.  Be ready to disagree with people appropriately.

Having opinions is part of what makes other people human, too.  Your opinions are guaranteed to brush up against someone else’s opinions.  It will broaden your horizons to hear that someone disagrees with you keenly on some fundamental issue (even if you’re sure in your heart that they’re a jerk for doing so).  Be professional in your disagreements and try to accept the people that disagree with you. Remember that a person who doesn’t offend somebody couldn’t possibly interest anybody.

9.  Make connections between people.

One of the values of being known by a number of people is that you can make connections between people and increase the networking.  For example, as your own circle grows, people will often ask you questions like “How can I get started in this business?” or “Who do you recommend I talk to for a job?”  Knowing a lot of people allows you to introduce people in your network to each other, making them happy and increasing your own prestige in the process.

10.  Have fun.

Being famous is really all about extending your reach.  It’s great for hearing about that next job or finding someone with hard-to-get technical information.  Fame even lets you get a free drink or lunch occasionally, but it’s not a substitute for having a life of your own.  Relax and have fun with it.

Fame is not a zero-sum game.  Everyone can be well-known if they want to be.  Because of this, never make the mistake of assuming that because you’re famous you’re entitled to more than anyone else.  And remember that it’s not enough to be famous just for being famous; you need to be famous because you actually have something that you do reasonably well.  If you forget to do things for yourself, you will soon discover that you don’t have anything new to offer... and you’ll become a parody of what you once were.

Podcast Spotlight

The Hope for the Introvert podcast is a series of conversations with and about introverted leaders, their strengths, and how they apply them in the workplace and other parts of life. Ben Woelk chats with guests about the challenges many of us face as introverts and how we overcome them. These honest and open discussions provide practical strategies for empowering you to be effective leaders and influencers–strategies that leverage your introvert strengths. What strengths do you attribute to your introverted nature?

Ben Woelk is an introverted leader whose passion is mentoring and coaching introverted leaders. He’s had the opportunity to speak across the world about how others can become successful leaders by identifying and actualizing their introvert strengths. Those opportunities led to the creation of Introverted Leadership, a mentoring program that provides coaching services to empower prospective leaders based on the unique abilities your introverted nature provides.

Volunteers

Do you have a talent for photography? Are you a people person? If so, we need your help.
Below are the areas in which we have a need for volunteers.
Contact president@stcdfw.org if you are interested in helping.

Historian
Take pictures at events.
Videographer
Record chapter meetings.
Membership Coordinator
Review our monthly membership reports to ensure new members are welcomed and added to our mailing lists.
Corporate Sponsorship Coordinator
Help us find corporate sponsors.
Volunteer Coordinator
Help connect volunteers to their interests.

Spectrum Conference

2019 marks the 60th anniversary of the annual Spectrum Conference! Please join the Rochester Chapter of the Society for Technical Communication at the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) March 24-26 as they celebrate this diamond anniversary. The theme is "Remember Yesterday. Celebrate Today. Plan for Tomorrow."

Click here to see more information and register.

Summit

The 2019 STC Summit is in Denver this year, May 5-8.

The full schedule is available here: https://summit.stc.org/schedule/. You can view it in a PDF grid, or as a list. There are 80+ sessions and 12 workshops, plus:

Please consider attending the premier technical communication conference and share this info with your tech comm colleagues -- and on social media.

Want to Get Your Degree or Certificate?

Consider a degree or certificate in Technical Communication. DFW has several local universities with excellent programs, and STC offers their own professional certification program.
 

Society for Technical Communication - Professional Certification at the Foundation, Practitioner, and Expert level. For more information, visit www.stc.org/certification/.

University of North Texas – BA, BS, and MA in Professional and Technical Communication, and Technical Writing Certificate. For more information, visit https://techcomm.unt.edu/.

Texas Christian University – BA in Writing. For more information, visit addran.tcu.edu/english/academics/areas-of-study/undergraduate-programs/ba-writing/.


University of Texas at Arlington – Technical Writing Certificate. For more information, visit www.uta.edu/english/Academics/technicalwriting-certification.

#STCLoneStar

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Support Our Chapter

Your support of our chapter matters.
North Texas Lone Star STC Chapter is a 501(c)3 charitable organization.
As you look at your budgets, consider supporting us by donating through PayPal.
 
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Copyright © 2019 North Texas Lone Star Chapter STC, All rights reserved.

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North Texas Lone Star STC Chapter
P.O. Box 260724
Plano, TX 75026-0724

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