Get Ideas out of Your Head and into the Discussion (Webinar)

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We're communicators, and often excellent at putting the written word in place, but at times the conversation is where we are needed. We have great ideas, or know what we want to achieve, but it can be difficult to direct the conversation to where we want it to be. If you can help guide the discussion and frame it in terms that work for you and your audience, the results are often far more powerful than you can imagine. This session explores how to get the results you want by helping others to get what they want. It's a win-win discussion.

Participants learn about (and hear examples of):

  • Materializing an idea and turning it into success (take the idea, make it happen)
  • Knowing your weaknesses and addressing them positively (take your weaknesses and address them for good results)
  • Defining what success looks like (set the terms for success early and then meet them)
  • Being in a room where everyone is smarter than you (and they aren't, but it may feel that way)
  • Succeeding in a competitive environment (which may not be the friendliest place to be)
  • Walking through troubleshooting problems (getting to the true source of the problem)
  • Managing a project successfully (by implementing one core strategy on every project plan)
  • The only question you need to ask at the end of an interview or document/proposal review (and why, even if you don't get the job, you know the reasons)
  • Documenting everything (ensure no one questions you without you having an answer for them)


Bernard Aschwanden has volunteered for the Society for Technical Communication (STC) for over 20 years. He is an STC Associate Fellow and served as president of STC's international organization during the 2015-2016 term.

With over 25 years of industry experience, Bernard consults with clients on content strategy and information architecture. He helps find documentation solutions for simple and complex problems using leading industry tools such as DITA, XML, FrameMaker, Adobe Experience Manager, Oxygen, XMetaL, easyDITA, and Vasont. Bernard's clients include not-for-profits, military contractors, construction, mining, farming, computer hardware, software, government, healthcare, aerospace, and manufacturing companies. He is a recognized expert in communications and related technology (think tools, process, DITA, CCMS), and presents to large and small organizations around the world. Bernard is an Adobe Certified Expert, a Certified Technical Trainer, and the author of numerous publications on publishing and single sourcing, including Advanced FrameMaker, XMetaL: A Hands-On Guide to Developing DITA Compliant Documents, and FrameMaker: A Hands-On Guide to Developing DITA Compliant Documents.

Photo of Bernard Ashwanden


This webinar will be offered through JoinMe and will be recorded. You can attend either through the free JoinMe app on your mobile device or in a browser (all browsers supported but Chrome works best). You will receive connection information through email two days before the webinar. If you do not receive it, contact us at email hidden; JavaScript is required.

Recording of STC Multi-Chapter Techcomm Showcase


The event recording is available free at

The Multi-Chapter Techcomm Showcase was brought to you by the Rochester, New England, and Southeastern Michigan Chapters of the Society for Technical Communication.


Audience-specific Content using FrameMaker by Bernard Aschwanden

Bernard Aschwanden

Bernard Aschwanden, STC President, works with clients to improve content creation, management and distribution workflows to improve quality and increase productivity. He is the founder of Publishing Smarter, an Associate Fellow of the Society for Technical Communication, and President of the STC, Bernard has helped hundreds of companies implement successful publishing solutions. Bernard is focused on publishing better, publishing faster and publishing smarter.

Know Your Users: Improving Learning Content by Connecting with User by Patty Gale

Patty Gale

As a learning content developer for a technical writing team at Autodesk, Patty Gale is involved in many aspects of the design, development, and production of learning content for 3D modeling software. A technical communicator for over 25 years, Patty has worked at businesses all sizes, from small start-ups to large corporations. Whether the sole writer or part of a larger team, Patty enjoys learning new technologies and determining the most effective way to share important information with users. She has received multiple awards from her employers and STC competitions, including an International Award of Distinguished Technical Communication. Patty holds Bachelor’s degrees in Computer Science and Business Management.

Best Practices in Using Social Media for Your Business by Angel Bedford

Angel Bedford

Angel Belford is a communications professional with over 10 years of experience in writing, editing and content management.
Currently, Angel is the Web Content Administrator at Lourdes University managing all online content and the company Intranet.
Prior to her current position she worked at FOX Toledo, a local news media organization, overseeing the Internet department, social media and the internal content management system. Angel was a technical writer at La-Z-Boy, holding this position for several years while creating documentation including user and administrator manuals, quick reference cards, and online manuals.
She has developed/maintained several types of digital and print documentation including: quick reference cards, websites, forms, user guides, training manuals, diagrams and newsletters.

Evolution of the Knowledge Broker Slides Are Available

On 21 March 2014, Christopher Ward (@WebWorksChris) and Bernard Aschwanden (@aschwanden4stc) gave a presentation to our chapter on "Evolution of the Knowledge Broker: Trading your content for revenue". The slides from the presentation are now available on our Speakers' Handouts and Presentations page: Evolution of the Knowledge Broker slides (52 pages .pdf).

When available, handouts and presentations from previous chapter events may be downloaded from the Speakers' Handouts and Presentations page.