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Sorry Not Sorry: Managing Content Strategy Challenges in Decentralized Environments

Sorry Not Sorry: Managing Content Strategy Challenges in Decentralized Environments

Presented at HighEdWeb 2018 Annual conference with Alaina Wiens.


Amy Grace Wells

October 22, 2018

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  1. SORRY NOT SORRY Managing Content Strategy Challenges in Decentralized Environments

    Amy Grace Wells · Alaina Wiens October 22, 2018 #heweb18 #mpd1
  2. Alaina Wiens •Leads tourism and marketing for Flint, Michigan •Marketing

    director, content strategist, strategic planning consultant •15 years experience in higher education, and nonprofit •Human behind StrategyCar •Just wants to make everything better •Editorial director of UX Booth •Content strategist and UX designer •15 years experience in higher ed, publishing, and nonprofit •Master’s degrees in higher education and user experience design •Handles her business Amy Grace Wells
  3. Sometimes you have to bring people along. Sometimes you have

    to stand apart.


  6. People ruin everything.

  7. People ruin everything. Just kidding.

  8. You need people to: • Understand goals • Understand everyone’s

    role • Agree on priorities • Share information or content • Adopt new tools or processes • Work together • Focus

  10. None
  11. 1. Understand your organization’s goals

  12. You have to know where you’re going before you can

    decide how to get there.
  13. You have to know where you’re knowing before you can

    bring people along.
  14. 2. Connect your work to business goals

  15. Demonstrate the connection between your work and your organization’s goals.

  16. Invite others to do the same.

  17. 3. Determine what’s needed (and what’s in the way).

  18. 4. Assemble your team.

  19. Take inventory of your allies.

  20. Don’t wait for leadership.

  21. 5. Move forward together.

  22. Once you’ve set the course, invite others to join you.

  23. Create a plan together.

  24. Stay focused on goals.

  25. Humans are irrational.

  26. None
  27. Others should not derail your goals and success.

  28. Become comfortable with the uncomfortable.

  29. 1. Validate people’s feelings and needs.

  30. But be firm about where you can’t compromise.

  31. I can hear/see you are feeling _______ because ________. I

    want to help you, but I am unable to _______ because _______.
  32. I can hear you are feeling frustrated because this content

    is important to you. I want to help you, but I am unable to post events last-minute because I support six departments and if I do this then the alumni office can’t count on me.
  33. 2. Call a timeout.

  34. Allowing misunderstanding to fester gives them more power to burden

  35. If someone doesn’t understand your role, call a timeout and

    clarify before anything more happens.
  36. 3. Talk with your leadership.

  37. Have an uncomfortable and direct talk with your leadership. Know

    in advance where they will support you putting your foot down.
  38. You deserve support to find a way to work reasonably

    with unreasonable people.
  39. 4. Communicate expectations in writing.

  40. …and enforce consequences.

  41. 5. Develop and enforce guidelines.

  42. Develop some key rules or guidelines about deadlines and response

  43. 6. Know when to call it quits.

  44. If you have a repeat offender, they need to be

    called out.
  45. Give them explicit steps that must be taken for them

    to continue receiving your help.
  46. To do good work for others, you must take care

    of yourself first.
  47. You’re valid. You’re knowledgeable. You’re a rockstar.

  48. Thanks.

  49. Alaina Wiens amygrace@contentandux.com @amygracewells Amy Grace Wells alainawiens@strategycar.com @alainawiens