I am the founder of Outcome Programs, where I host a products focused annual conference, invite-only design-driven-dinners, content strategy and UX design workshops, and custom product growth programs.


Outcome programs by Vinish Garg, product UX design

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I send a weekly emails for my readings in products, design, work, and all things life. See example 1, example 2, and join me to receive emails when I writespeak, or make something.

Latest Writings

October 3, 2019 at Uncategorized

Love All or D F N P T H

Last week, I had an eye infection and I went to a specialist for my eye investigation. As I had anticipated and fairly enough, I saw a Snellen Chart and soon I was reading different sets of characters, by using different power eye-lens. (Reading: Eye Charts) Selecting a specific set of characters must have some […]

September 27, 2019 at Uncategorized

A Conversational Quick Reference to — What is UX Design

This week, I am doing a bit of an experiment as you get some control on what you want to read for specific parts in the post. This conversational writing experience is provided by Typeform. I am not too sure if this is the best use case to leverage the real power of conversational authoring experience but talking about […]

September 20, 2019 at content strategy, customer experience, events, UX

Designing for Trust. Speaking on The World Interaction Design Day 2019

While working as a consultant with growing product teams worldwide in the last ten years, “designing for scalability” has been my constant coffee table message. To validate a startup idea, to ensure that the message is marketable, the product is sale-able, and that business is scaleable, I channelize my energies to design products that really […]

September 5, 2019 at customer experience, products

Happy Teachers Day is Happy Customers Day

Who teaches us the best in our work. We enrol for training, and make notes when in talks with our leaders or industry experts because we want to learn. Fair point. However, it is the customers who teach us the best lessons, most often the hard way. This "Teachers Day" is for anyone who is […]

July 3, 2019 at content strategy, products, UX

Pixel-Assured before Pixel-Perfect

Designers are hooked to design pixel-perfect layouts. In last twenty years, I have seen design teams investing in PSD to HTML, and later to a variety of libraries, extensions, and tools to ensure that designs are pixel perfect. Ironically, in every product team where I am involved after the development starts, I have a hundred […]

June 28, 2019 at events, products, UX

The 8Knorks Cuisine—As Design Leaders, do We Own the Loss to the Business

Since I am in the middle of introducing the 8Knorks guests now, here is the basic structure and the core why of why we need to sit together. The roadmap in the spreadsheet with milestones The dashboard we are designing today The filters we add to the list of restaurants or institutes or cars The interactive annotation that we add […]

June 24, 2019 at content strategy, events, products, UX

8Knorks — Design around Dinner, in Chandigarh

8Knorks is a dinner table where eight voices combine and rise to discuss the future of design, and its impact on the people for whom we design, around their stories, their success, and their constraints. The table is set in the beautiful Chandigarh, on 12 July. A Friday evening. Windy. Say it Loud Does your current work […]

June 16, 2019 at Family, self

Father’s Day for My Son, Because “A Child is the Father of Man”

Ever since I started writing letters to my son who is 8 yo now, I feel like a new version of myself that day. It is immense joy and a pleasure to be on either side of the Father’s day table. On this day, I am revising my letters to my son because being a […]

June 5, 2019 at Business, products, startups, work

Digital Design Services Agencies—A Radical Perspective Required

The bottomline for a digital design services agency is to ‘win a project’ and start drawling lines and writing code as soon as possible. This is a conventional ‘services mindset’ where we are hired to do a job — to design and deliver a product. By contract and by conventions, agencies have nothing to do with product’s success, […]

June 3, 2019 at Business, content strategy, products, UX

The Hardest Part of Our Work

Tori Street tweeted a few days back where she asked the content practitioners for what is the hardest part of our work. Hey Content Designers and Content Strategists – can we talk honestly for a moment? What’s the hardest part of your job? Which part do you – personally – feel you have the most […]

June 1, 2019 at content strategy, products

Introducing Content Strategy in the Middle of Project

How do you introduce content strategy in a product team where the product is already half-developed? I had that experience two years back where the team was designing the product purely for the specifications that spoke in the language of what the founders wanted or how the project manager had envisioned. As I had anticipated, […]

April 27, 2019 at products, sales, UX

The UX Battles – Pixels and Dollars

While in a general conversation for the Outcome conference and for our dinner series, our crew member Tanu Sharma asked me for any pointers to raise the bar in her design work. When I talked about research oriented evidence based design, and how to ensure that our designs are scale-able, I sensed her curiosity. “What will […]

April 12, 2019 at Business, products, work

Borders and Margins in Our Own Code

Most of us have used browser’s code review functions to a quick reference to the code styling. For example, I use Chrome’s Inspect Element though I rarely need it. Last week, I had to say NO to a potential project because I found that one of the partners in client side was not easy to […]

April 5, 2019 at UX

UX Writing: An Annoying Limitation that I Often Experience

As design and user experience gain traction in product teams worldwide, it brings up new roles and titles for people with specific skills. For example, UX Writers, as we often notice in many digital design publications, conferences, and job listings. My agency name is vhite (and not “Vhite*, please) and I continue to see that […]

February 22, 2019 at content strategy, products, UX

The Ministry of Content—Empathy, Empowerment, and Economics

For the customers, successful interaction with a product is an immediate goal. For instance, they click on the Donate button to make a donation—and a transaction with minimum friction is a success to them. Assuming that empathy helps the product team to design the right experience for this donate action, the donor lives that moment […]

February 12, 2019 at city

Chandigarh: A Connected City Proposal [Slides]

Digital projects for a city interest me. Though I have not got a chance to work on a city governance technology project as yet, I often take examples of architecture in my product design talks and posts. This is because I see a lot of parallel in how architects approach their projects and how design […]

February 6, 2019 at content strategy, entrepreneurship, startups, storytelling, UX

OUTCOME: A UX Design Conference. Why is it For Every Product Team in Chandigarh

We have two days to go for OUTCOME, and it has been pretty exciting last few weeks as a build up for the day. As part of promotions via emails and on social media (see Twitter), I have extensively shared many reasons and use cases for why OUTCOME is so relevant to almost every product […]

January 26, 2019 at content strategy, customer experience, entrepreneurship, storytelling, UX

The Republic of OUTCOME

26 January. India. Indian Republic Day. Being a republic gives us the choice to govern ourselves as a citizen of India. It gives us fundamental rights. To realize how important it is, see a few countries that are not a republic. 26 January 2019 is India’s 70th Republic day. While I am completely involved with […]

December 30, 2018 at content strategy, entrepreneurship, products, startups, storytelling, UX

The Year 2018 Footprints

Replaying the year 2018 reel and I feel as if it was a complex yet an entertaining movie. 1. Conversations I continued my series of inviting guests for content conversations and I totally enjoyed the three episodes in 2018 — one each with Scott Abel, Jess Sand, and Lauren Lucchese. I see these coming in March 2019 […]

December 27, 2018 at events, products, SaaS, startups, storytelling, UX

Designing for the OUTCOME: A Conference, Products Culture, and Startup Ecosystem

The startup ecosystem noise gets louder and is more widely distributed now in Chandigarh. I love the way students are now entrepreneuring their muscles from idea to pitching, and sometimes prototyping on their way. My co-working space CEED gives me regular chances to talk to Chitkara University students. Many a times, they surprise me with […]

November 26, 2018 at content strategy, storytelling, UX

Lets Discuss Content and Design in the Language of Stories

Personas. Customer journey. Content types. Jobs To Be Done (JTBD). Wireframes. Buying decisions. Abandoned cart. Leads. CTA. Product teams worldwide use all kind of terms to design experiences. When I see different UX events (including 3 days conferences) and even the decks on Slideshare, not many design teams speak in the language of storytelling. I […]

November 3, 2018 at Business, content strategy, customer experience, products, startups, storytelling, UX

Design for Hero, Strategically—A Guardian of an Intent

Teodora Petkova is a philologist fascinated by the metamorphoses of text on the Web. See some of her select writings for Ontotext, and know more about her fascinating insights at her website. Teodora invites guests for a dialogue on web, text, content, and the mesh that weaves meaning and context around information and its variables. […]

September 28, 2018 at self

I Slept with My Ex Car Today

I owned the same car since Feb 2011. I used this car for my office, for traveling to my clients, for my workshops and meetups, to Elante, to Metro, or my coffee shop visits. Many a times, we both got oiled and re-oiled together. On the wheels and when parked. My car actually took care […]

September 17, 2018 at content strategy, products, UX

Content Value—You Cannot Separate it From Design Value

Mark Lewis, the celebrated technical communicator and a veteran in the industry published Deep thought leaders discuss the “value of content”, in this month’s STC Intercom on LinkedIn. Mark has listed a few industry best references (writings, talks) on content value and content metrics. In my understanding, the notion of content as a profit-center have […]

August 9, 2018 at Family

Letter to My Seven Years Son—A Y-Shaped Conversation

I wrote a letter to my son when he was five. He was new to school, so my message was centered around acceptance, and standards. He is seven today, and I have something else to say. Like every other father has — on either side of the border — across the Summar. So often it happens that I make […]

July 6, 2018 at sales, storytelling

B2B Sales – The Narrative to the Rescue

Backstory: In 2016, I worked on a product support center project for a real estate CRM. Towards the end of our contract, the founder of the company asked me to have a quick look at the sales pitch thinking that my technical writing eye can help him tighten the slides. I reviewed it and that […]

July 5, 2018 at storytelling

A Queue is a Hope

A few days back, my nephew asked me for some script ideas for a video on Queue—as part of a social awareness campaign project in his school. He did not need the script, but a few dots that he could connect. Here is a quick outline of what I shared with him. Thinking of queue, […]

June 26, 2018 at products, sales, startups, UX

Designing for Sales, Selling the Design

I read Joe Cutler’s post on products’ failures in Its Product’s Fault! Right?, on Medium. It has been widely discussed that the primary reasons of startups’ failures are around product-market fit (or as Brian Balfour says, market-product fit). This is in addition to other factors including weak leadership, flawed product execution, or lack of funds. Market In […]

May 30, 2018 at content strategy, UX

Content Strategy in Financial Corporations— An Interview with Lauren Lucchese of Capital One

I ran a series of content conversations, twice in the past. At present, I am running part three in the series and with a difference. This time, we see guests sharing their content strategy experiences in specific industries. Today, we have Lauren Lucchese (of Capital One) as our guest, and Lauren is talking about Content Strategy […]

May 29, 2018 at content strategy, startups, storytelling, strategic brand narrative

First Steps in the Strategic Brand Narrative

In my last two content strategy projects with two startups, I realized very early that different teams in either startup did not have a clear understanding of what the brand wanted to do, and why. My second and then third meetings cleared off some dust but I could sense that the message was not absorbed […]

May 25, 2018 at Friday Reel

Friday Reel

A Friday recap on my work, readings, and contributions in the week. Work: I am working on a brand story a seed round B2B startup, for pitching to customers. While plotting the dots for the sales pitch around two weeks back, I realized that I need to have a skeleton framework that I can use […]

May 16, 2018 at content strategy, non profits, UX

Content Strategy in Non-Profits— An Interview with Jess Sand

I ran a series of content conversations, twice in the past. At present, I am running part three in the series and with a difference. This time, we see guests sharing their content strategy experiences in specific industries. Today, we have Jess Sand as our guest, and Jess is talking about Content Strategy in Non-Profits. […]

May 10, 2018 at entrepreneurship, products, startups, storytelling

The Best Jobs in Technology? But Who Will Sell?

I saw this tweet by techvibes on the best ten tech jobs in 2018, in Canada. Tech Roles Dominate the Ten Best Jobs of 2018 https://t.co/gUspNH05vS #cdntech pic.twitter.com/oSX2q3nVtn — Techvibes (@techvibes) May 6, 2018 I saw the post and the list reads as: Machine Learning Engineer – $97,796 Full Stack Developer – $82,711 Development Operations (DevOps) […]

May 8, 2018 at products, startups

Project Management. Management or Leadership?

My friend, Nibu invited me if I was interested to contribute to PMI Bangalore chapter newsletter. I am not a PM person but when I work with startup product teams for UX and content strategy, it is quite a PM like role. Personally, I do not like the PM role in smaller teams because such […]

May 4, 2018 at Friday Reel

Friday Reel

A Friday recap on my work, readings, and contributions in the week. Work: Started planning on a brand story of a seed round B2B startup, for pitching to customers. It is a sales pitch and I am a huge fan of Andy Raskin, and Michael Margolis, for their own style in brand narrative strategies. Interviews: I published […]

May 2, 2018 at content strategy, customer experience, healthcare

Content Strategy in Healthcare — An Interview with Scott Abel

I ran a series of content conversations, twice in the past. Today, I resume the series and with a difference. This time, we see guests sharing their content strategy experiences in specific industries. As our first guest, we have none other than the Wrangler – Scott Abel talking about Content Strategy in Healthcare. “As far […]

April 27, 2018 at Friday Reel

Friday Reel

A continued working on the brand voice for a startup in AgriTech. Finalized the first content conversation in the new series, and it goes live on 02 May (Wednesday next week). The first post is on The State of Content Strategy in Healthcare. I completed the second interview too and shared it with the next guest, you […]

April 20, 2018 at Friday Reel

Friday Reel

Starting today, I will post a Friday Reel post on every Friday evening, to share my work, gains, contributions, or readings in the week. A startup is working on something in AgriTech and we discussed their brand voice. I am working on this voice message architecture, and we discussed the structure and basic elements of […]

April 19, 2018 at technology

Colors and Accessibility. And Standards.

I was reading How Going From Entrepreneur to Investor Changed My Perspective, by Unreasonable, and I saw the options to enhance readability. As I selected different readability options, I see the difference. Is it about accessibility (standards)? I wondered. For example, the BRIGHT option changes it to multiple colors. Likewise, the BLUES option changes it to multiple colors in […]

April 16, 2018 at content strategy

Content Strategy: Industry Specific Insights

In the past, I had published a series of content strategy conversations where I invited some of the world’s leading content practitioners to share their thoughts and experiences on content strategy. Now, I plan to resume the series with a difference. This time, I have guests sharing their content strategy experiences for a specific industry. […]

March 7, 2018 at content strategy, customer experience, UX

Content Strategy for Business Success—My Meetup Transcript

I hosted a content strategy meetup on 23 February. This is the first person account (transcript-like) of that lively discussion. The audience was a mix of UX and UI engineers from services agencies, marketers, copywriters, and founders, and they had never worked with a content strategist before. Note that I have not transcripted it from […]

March 4, 2018 at Uncategorized

For My Birthday—I Applied for a License

On 04 March 2017, I moved to 41-APAL Town which means that I turned 41 and it was about Amazing People in an Awesome Life. Today as I turn 42, I am happier because I am in an Even space—42. Historically, I have loved even numbers more because the odds are not stacked against anything […]

February 13, 2018 at perspective

My Valentine Ring

My valentine is not with me. She is inside me. This Means I can talk to her anytime — it never happens that she does not respond to my call or text. I do not need TIME to talk to her — she is always in my time. We do not to need to agree to not to talk about […]

February 6, 2018 at customer experience, UX

Designing UX is Designing Delight

The product teams design happiness for the users — and for their communities. One of my tweets on poor UX triggered this post. I often see instances of a poor UX — whether for the way a button or tab responds rather than what it promises, or for the way it makes me take the next action. In the absence of […]

December 12, 2017 at customer experience, self

I Had No Furniture

I enjoy the daylight savings time difference, very bright and too dark as well. Because I live almost in the middle of the lane, fourth from the outer corner. One fine day, I heard a knock, and they sneaked in. They had a few sharp tools, and a water nozzle too. I was surprised because my […]

November 20, 2017 at content strategy, technical communication

Content Is an Approach — Content Strategy Is the Outcome

I often get emails from technical writers (and sometimes from product design practitioners) on how they can get started with content strategy. This post is a quick reference to get started with content strategy, if that interests you. Here is an example email. I have shared my experiences in the past in technical writers’ first […]

November 16, 2017 at content strategy

A Content Strategy Project Meeting in a Rapid Fire Mode

My first meeting for the CS project went in a rapid fire mode.

November 15, 2017 at self, storytelling

When A Grandmother Raises a Tomato

For my grandmother who quit on 11 November. “If you are right, you are the tallest.” She told me on the day when a taller-than-me boy tore my shirt pocket’s zipper when I was seven. “We should not wait to feel hungry to have a fruit. To skip fruit is a disservice to our body.” She […]

September 18, 2017 at UX

Designing Promotional Codes: A UX Case Study

In May 2016, I got a contract as a UX consultant for a relatively complex product. James is the product owner and he approached me to write FAQs for the product website, going by my (that time) title — content strategist. I told James that I do not work with product teams only to write FAQs, I […]

August 8, 2017 at Family, self

Being Name is Being Naman

My son Naman turns six today. So often when I am working on my laptop writing emails, he stands around me watching the craft-in-progress. Sometimes, he asks me how I will send it, what draft means, and how I am switching to different windows, and why. And he rarely asks the same question again. Being […]

July 6, 2017 at entrepreneurship, startups

A Startup is a Pretense if…

So many founders, with an idea in their plate, a light in their eyes, access to technology, and a goal in their minds. When I think of the overall success rate of startups and how mature they are for their groundwork, team, and strategy, sometimes I sense an under-preparedness. Fair enough for beginners. When I continue […]

June 25, 2017 at startups, work

Stop Doing Average Work, It Annoys Everyone

It is a pity that we are so happy to do average work! I often hear such whispers by A digital agency (in services): I am doing good but I wish I could crack that client. A manager: My team is doing very well, I just wish to have that kind of A-player. A work seeking candidate: I am doing […]

June 12, 2017 at startups, storytelling

RIP Resumes. For Roles—For Scripts

Seeking Work. Resumes. Mismatch. Bad Hiring. Cost. Culture. In all communication, context is important. It depends. Don’t we often say that? Unfortunately, most of us overlook the context when we make the most important decisions in our life. While seeking work — a job, a contract, or partnership, and also when hiring. The Pain — A Wrong Commitment While seeking work, we […]

June 8, 2017 at customer experience

Airtel and a Hero’s Journey — The Bladesmith and the Coin

Digitally. A hero’s journey. It started with courtesy. A promise. Sign up. Take off. Airtel 2013. Two heroes are on the same journey. Their swords are crafted by the same bladesmith. Committed to the cause, they enter the inmost cave.

March 22, 2017 at content strategy, UX


Not every parents plan for me — sometimes I just happen. Once I have life, it does not always matter how I happened because the eye is on the goals. Fair enough. Sometimes, I struggle and a few other times, I get the benefit of doubt. In either case, it does not mean that my owners too struggle like […]

March 4, 2017 at self

Moved to 41-APAL, Whistles Town

I am 41 today. While writing this post yesterday, I realized that it has been about Amazing People in an Awesome Life (APAL) so far. For whatever I have been doing for last many years, I am incredibly thankful to people and things around me. And as I prepare myself today to respond to whatsapp-facebook type […]

November 9, 2016 at Business, technology, work

Servers Ban All 500 to 1000 lines of Code

The whole India is responding to act on the announcement that Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has banned the current notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 with immediate effect, on the midnight of 08 November 2016. The surge in twitter reactions and on whatsapp fueled my mind to wonder what happens if something similar is announced for the […]

November 6, 2016 at Family

Storytelling to Rescue

My son is five plus now and although this is his first year of a grade school (he completed two years of preschool before this current school), he does not like to talk about his classmates, his studies and class work, lunch or fruit sharing, at home. I have very little idea of what and […]

October 2, 2016 at Business, storytelling, work

Three Questions I Ask in an Interview

To me, an interview is a conversation where two individuals are trying to evaluate if they can work together. At vhite, I have interviewed many candidates in last five years for the position of a technical communicator, a content strategist, or a content engineer. Sometimes, the position was open for an onsite full time employment […]

September 11, 2016 at content strategy, technical communication

Cheat Sheet: Content Strategist, Technical Communicator

Sarah Cooper wrote a series of witty cheat sheets including the one as Cheat Sheet Software Engineer. I was pumped to write one for content strategists and technical communicators (cannot separate these two, not even on Sunday). We say = We mean “It depends.” = We need to discuss. “Write to me when you have fifteen minutes.” = We need to discuss. […]

August 8, 2016 at Family

Letter to My Son. He is Five Today.

My son Naman, turns five today. Five. A milestone nonetheless. It is easy for me to keep loving you the way I have been doing so far. Helping you cross the road, making you open your mouth for a bite, or adjusting your waist belt. Or driving with your school bus [1]. You insist for something and either you […]

July 9, 2016 at Family

The Speedometer and Anniversary Wishes

To my brother and his wife To, the speed When we were kids, you longed for sports shoes. In school, you loved bread-sauce more than the bread-jam. Then it was Maggie, or a Burger. Matching steps with the city life, you were responding to the changing times, though a tad faster. Speed was not in the scooter […]

June 21, 2016 at content strategy, technical communication

An Independent Technical Writer or a Content Specialist—a Product Owner

When hired to work as an independent contractor, I do not work only as a technical writer or a content specialist. I need to bring together all my skills in UX design, UX writing, content strategy and a marketing perspective. I cannot really contribute to the product by merely writing procedures, instructions, or product copy. Here […]

June 15, 2016 at entrepreneurship, work

When an Entrepreneur’s Phone Rings for Too Long

We often see it in a movie that when the phone rings for too long, we are hooked to see what happens next. Something is there in store. Rush. Pick the phone. Don’t. The protagonist, the entrepreneur. If the call is not answered, it leads to another sub plot and it plays a role in […]

May 25, 2016 at content strategy, ContentHug, technical communication

Epic List of +170 Sources for Content Community

This is a list of content publishing sources in content strategy, technical communication, information architecture, and in content marketing. For ContentHug, we curated content from around 200 sources. These include blogs by individuals, by product owners, and by small and big publishing agencies. Although we closed ContentHug earlier this year, I have listed these sources in this […]

April 27, 2016 at content strategy

Content — Brick by Brick

This is a work-in-progress post and I plan to build on this content concept in more posts. For ages, content was always important for brands when they planned advertisements, stories, or product literature. Content was there for clinical trial studies, science and research, and for technical manuals. It is the introduction of web that make […]

April 23, 2016 at Family, storytelling

Those Drenched 2 Hours 10 Minutes

My son will be five in August this year. Even after completing two years of his pre-school, he is reluctant and depressed while going to his new school. This is an account of day four of his school for how I try to prepare him for a school day. 06:10 AM He wakes up. Stays in […]

April 18, 2016 at content strategy, information architecture, technical communication, UX

Autobiography of a Content Chunk

Johunnnnnn is a technical communicator. As the meeting room opened, he came out and picked “Single Sourcing: Building Modular Documentation” from the rack and settled in his chair. It was drizzling outside. There were doubts—for strategy, goals, and for tools. The whole work culture was passionate—to plan scalable and branded content that works towards the […]

April 5, 2016 at content strategy

13 Industry Experts: Brands They Admire for Content

The question I asked, “Can you name any companies or brands whom you admire for content (strategy, marketing, technical content)?” In a series of conversations that I planned for ContentHug, 13 experts share their thoughts on the branded content they admire, and why. See 13 Experts: Companies or Brands They Admire for Content for the detailed document.

March 24, 2016 at content marketing, content strategy, storytelling

Content for Failure? Or, Content For Success?

Every organization wants to connect with its audience whether for its products, services, or information sharing. The Content for Success mindset is central to your success at all stages of your business. Content helps you refine your business idea and to validate it in market — product idea on canvas, customer interviews, user research Content is key to the […]

March 9, 2016 at content strategy, technology

16 Experts on: Content’s Role in Disruption

The question is “What roles do you see for content strategists or technical communicators in disruption, in technology or otherwise?” In a series of conversations that I planned for ContentHug, 16 experts share their thoughts on content’s role in disruption. See Content’s Role in Disruption for the detailed document.

March 4, 2016 at work

Investing in Community, Mentors’, and Influencer Relationships

I live in Chandigarh. I did not have any mentors, money, or a management degree when I started my own digital agency, vhite. The learning, experience, and the visibility that I have gained so far have been largely by my quest for relationship development. I always believe in learning things from people who are doing […]

February 11, 2016 at content strategy, technical communication

Technical Communicators’ First Brush with Content Strategy

When I was preparing and promoting my presentation Content is playing. Game on. for STC India Annual Conference 2015, a reader wrote to me via email: “I would be very keen and interested to understand how the technical communications world handles/approaches Content Strategy. This is something we have been trying to create competency on.. but […]

January 27, 2016 at entrepreneurship, startups

A Startup is an Intent

Any startup is an intent. An entrepreneur plans for a startup with a specific intention. Everything else including the strategy, budget and processes are planned to realize that intent. You plan a product to make life easier for somebody, including your own. Isn’t it so wonderful? See the detailed post on Hacker Noon publication, on […]

January 23, 2016 at content strategy, startups, technical communication

ContentHug Curtains

ContentHug was planned with a vision. The first principle of the vision was to address my own pain points as I shared in our Makers Story. Unfortunately, we plan to discontinue the service for infinite time as we need to go back to the board for our goals and strategy. The Delight ContentHug succeeded in […]

December 10, 2015 at Branding, work

Be Your Own Story: For STC India Conference Newsletter

Your brand is not only what you do because you have to do whether for joy, money, or people. Your brand is hidden behind everything else that you do. A tweet. A movie review. A blog post. A role in any community. You participate in a conference. The chair that you occupy in a room […]

November 28, 2015 at events, technical communication

Guts and Glory. Conference. Vitamins. Canvas.

More often than not, we wear the same old hat in all conferences. Coffee, business cards, and handshakes. It is also true that we crave for meaningful experiences from a conference. Guts and Glory gives you a chance. It offered you a chance to present and to volunteer. It has given you a few chances […]

October 18, 2015 at content strategy, technical communication

Content Strategy in Technical Communication

Why A? Why not C? Who? What if? Where? Why again? This is how content strategists get started and the only goal is to bring value to the business. When I think how technical communicators generally work, there can be a lot of common ground. If you are about to start a new project as […]

September 16, 2015 at content strategy, UX

Adaptive. Intelligent. Personalized. Omnichannel. Content is Playing Now.

Content strategy is really evolving for its processes and goals. Ann Rockley says that intelligent content is content strategy taken to the next level. Kevin Nicholas and Noz Urbina say that the next generation content strategy is performance driven, personalized and omnichannel. It is not only audit, voice and tone, calendar, and publishing anymore. The brands are talking […]

September 8, 2015 at content strategy

Per Brick. Per Stitch. Per Word.

Scene one A man walks to an architect’s office and asks, “How much do you charge for your services? I may need it for my house?” “Please have a seat. I need to know some details as the pricing depends on a few factors. For example, …” “Ok, hang on. Can you please tell me […]

August 6, 2015 at startups, technical communication

51 Reasons: Why Startups Need a Knowledge Base

I completed my eBook project today, as a part of Smart Product Lab Challenge, by Gumroad. The eBook encourages startups to plan a product knowledge base before they launch it. You can get the eBook on Gumroad. In this post, I share 51 reasons of why a knowledge base really helps startups. Self Service Reduced […]

July 28, 2015 at customer support, technical communication

14 Ways: How Your Customer Support Benefits From a Knowledge Base

Recently, I was talking to Zendesk support team for my questions and the executive helped me with some directions. When I asked for how exactly I can setup SSL for my custom domain, he quickly pasted a URL from their knowledge base for my reference. The article really helped me because it had the context […]

July 24, 2015 at customer support, technical communication

Churn Rate? Let There be a Knowledge Base

So often it happens that when I am evaluating a new product, or I am looking to buy something from a new app, I look for some instructions. Regardless of my experience whether I find the information easily and whether it serves the purpose, it has strengthened by belief that customers often look for some […]

May 8, 2015 at startups

Pitching to Investors: Those Four Minutes

Last month, I worked on a ‘Pitching to investors’ project for a client. Although I am not aware of the latest status on funding, I want to share that awesome pitch deck preparing learning experience. In addition to working on technical content work that is punctuated with DITA, href, and TOC, I love storytelling. Since […]

April 17, 2015 at content strategy

Content Governance: Divide Between North and South

Governance, by its very nature raises questions on accountability, budgets, and risks. In Chandigarh, I have often seen a ‘Divide between North and South’ in terms of administration’s focus for providing basic facilities including the quality of streetlights and roads, or rain water drainage system. It means that the city administration helps people in a […]

April 13, 2015 at content strategy, ContentHug, startups, technical communication

ContentHug: Makers Story

The Why, How, and Next for ContentHug The Pain Shapes into a Problem The first time I subscribed to new updates by a blog was in 2008. It was for The Content Wrangler, closely followed by idratherbewriting, and a few more that are not active anymore. The insightful posts encouraged me to read more and […]

February 1, 2015 at entrepreneurship, storytelling

Stories Getting Their Due

I am a big fan of MasterChef India. As a viewer, I love the drama, the way participants adhere to the instructions, their energy and the passion, and how judges evaluate a dish for different parameters. They expect balance against some standards which makes sense to most of the aspects in our life. As an […]

December 25, 2014 at entrepreneurship, startups, storytelling

Santa and Entrepreneurs: Common Grounds

Born in a small town in a Hindu family, I did not know of Santa or Christmas and its background till I was around 15 years of age. In my early 20s, I got some idea of Santa and the Christmas flavor, with the buzz around for Christmas trees, candies, and the gifts. Now in last couple of […]

December 24, 2014 at Business, work

Clients Demands: Can you push the sun a little?

While driving with my son to drop him to his school, I stopped at a check point. This was the moment where he was feeling distraction by direct sunlight, as if struggling to see around. Before I could start, he requested me very politely – “Dad, can you please push the sun a little”? I […]

December 21, 2014 at Business, work

My Key Takeaways in 2014 [2]: Clarity.fm

Accessibility I was trying to find my friend’s house in a new locality in a somewhat complex architecture. It was 10:30 AM and I had the detailed address card. I saw a small grocery store at a corner and I felt like asking him for some directions right away, rather than first using my judgement […]

December 19, 2014 at Product Hunt, startups

My Key Takeaways in 2014 [1]: Product Hunt

A few minutes a day on Product Hunt is so internalized now, exactly the way I move to kitchen early morning for a cup of tea, or give instructions to my son while dropping him to school, or keep my one hand at CTRL+S while working on a draft. Ever since Ryan opened the contributions […]

December 11, 2014 at startups, technical communication

Authoring Tools For Startups

In last few years, I have worked with a few startups as a contractor. Either they had just launched a product and were connecting with their first customers, or they were about to launch. A startup has a different approach to documentation: Priority and Urgency: Customers are their only priority, and so they need minimum […]

November 12, 2014 at CRM, success story, work

A Failed Technical Documentation Project

Organizations and individuals talk about their success stories — it is important to talk about failures too. Most often, we share our experiences that are derived from our successful projects. Many technical communicators use their blog space or community portals and groups to share their knowledge and expertise from successful projects such as how they planned CS […]

November 3, 2014 at technical communication

Technical Communicators: Stop Thinking of These 13 Things

Hi technical communicators, help yourself by not thinking of these 13 things, when at work. (a) I wish the manager assigns that module to B and not to me. Why do you think that? Is it because that module is complex and may be challenging and can even invite conflicts during meetings? Or it may […]

November 14, 2013 at content strategy, technical communication

My Top Three in Tech Comm

A few weeks back, I saw a young couple asking ‘top three’ from each other, by turn. For example, the questions were ‘Your top three preferred holiday destinations’, or ‘three persons you love to meet whom you have never seen and who are alive’. Their conversation gave me some food for thought as I tried […]

November 7, 2013 at customer support, technical communication

Documentation Teams and Support Centres: Collaboration for A Common Goal

Note: I wrote this post for STC Notebook but ever since they rebranded, the whole layout of my post is lost and it is not a good reading experience. See it yourself, and now I post it here (with the same publishing date though) for a better reading reference. Not many technical documentation teams in […]

October 11, 2013 at content strategy, information architecture

Content has its Emotional Needs

As humans, we respond and react to different situations all day. We raise eyebrows when we are stuck in an unexpected traffic jam or when the elevator takes too long to reach us. We feel annoyed when MS Word stops responding and we need to start it all over again. By reflex action, we pull […]

October 8, 2013 at technical communication

Guest Post: Justifying Single Sourcing, a Case Study

The following is a guest post by Swapnil Ogale, a technical writer based in Australia. Working as a Contractor – Technical Writer across various industries, I have used a number of techniques to create a wide range of documentation, such as Online Help, FAQs, User Guides, Process Flows, Troubleshooting guides. I was interviewed (by the organisation […]

August 15, 2013 at content strategy

Content Inventory: The ‘Quantitative’ Content Audit

Content audit is an important step in formulating the content strategy for any website. The content audit process gives us the quantitative assets of a website in the form of content inventory, as well as the directions to do detailed content analysis. Of late, I have been working on the ‘Discovery’ phase of content strategy […]

May 31, 2013 at customer support, technical communication, technology

Using WordPress for Product Knowledge Base

Technical documentation has traditionally been developed in HATs or XML editors. It is only in recent years that the content management systems have caught the attention of documentation managers and authors as a potential platform for technical documentation. One of the most commonly used open source CMS is WordPress, and it has really evolved from […]

August 16, 2012 at technical communication

Core Skills for Technical Writers Often Overlooked

When I look to hire contractors, the most important factor for me is to evaluate the documentation and professional skills in the resume itself. While responding to open positions for my projects, many candidates apply with two to six years of experience. They claim to have developed world class documents in agile work environments, using […]

June 20, 2012 at technical communication

User Comments and Feedback on Technical Documentation

Till few years back, the primary objective of technical documentation was to present the procedures and instructions clearly and accurately. Generally, the documentation team was lauded for doing a good job, as long as: The page explained how to use a specific feature or how to do a task (such as to approve an invoice) […]

September 7, 2010 at sports

Sports and Character

Bradman rightly said as “First my parents taught me to be a cricketer off the field as well as on. It was not ‘did you win’ but ‘did you play the game’ that made the man… I have no doubt that it [cricket] moulds in an individual the right type of character better than any […]

June 23, 2010 at technical communication

Reviewing Technical Documentation

While training new technical writers, many organizations focus their training efforts on Developing the documentation which is primarily about writing procedures, topics and instructions. The writers are also introduced to documentation process, style guides and templates but I have realized that organizations do not have detailed processes on reviewing documentation. Documentation Reviewing Reviewing is as important […]

June 7, 2010 at technical communication, work

Growing As a Technical Writer

Technical writers generally enjoy their day-to-day tasks whether it is developing documentation prototype, writing instructions, reviewing a document (of self or others), or planning for a document publishing or release. My experience suggests that technical writers are so used to ‘feel-good’ factor that sometimes, the less experienced technical writers are ill-prepared to handle issues, conflicts, […]

January 18, 2010 at cinema

Feeling Inspired by Cinema

So, 3 idiots has almost rocked the nation. People have responded (or moved by) to the concept, the humor, the performance, the music, and of course the message. This is cinema. What the movie says is obvious but it is the execution that makes it a perfect toast. We are touched; we feel like appreciating […]