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Archive for April 24th, 2008

Previously on Battlestar Galactica, we learned that the corporate newsletter is dreamed up by a marketing or merchandising manager, and then immediately handed off to an assistant for execution, and that’s where it all starts to fall apart.

I realize now that this must have seemed pretty ironic, given my self-righteous grandstanding on Administrative Professionals Day. Not really, because it’s not her fault. And, no matter how much her boss “empowers” her when he dumps hands it off to her, it’s beyond her control:

  • This newsletter is only one of her eleventy-billion responsibilities.
  • She is expected to not only dig up stories on her own, but also channel stories from various other managers and directors she works with. Unfortunately,
  • She has no authority to prod those folks when they don’t contribute, and
  • She has no authority to edit their contributions.

Which brings us to one of the prime reasons corporate newsletters suck: too many cooks…or, more accurately, too many cooks and no executive chef. When you have six different people writing the newsletter, you invariably get:

  • Six different degrees of writing skill
  • Six different degrees of enthusiasm, and
  • Six different definitions of “humor.” (My personal fave!)

In the corporate world, anything cobbled together by six people means that responsibility for the thing is so diffuse that it will eventually die of neglect. So what’s the solution? That’s where the professional copywriter comes in. And it’s the topic of our stirring conclusion, coming Monday!

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