The words Hello World on a background of computer programming

Hello, World!

Traditionally, “Hello, world!” is used to illustrate how the process of coding works. It’s also used to ensure that a language or system is operating correctly. (Here’s a bit of history, if you’re interested.) Since this is my first official blog post of the redesigned Technically Eclectic site, this title only seems fitting.

In addition to what you can read on my About page, this post is a way to share a little more about the history of how Technically Eclectic started.

Why eclectic?

To be eclectic is to have ideas, style, and tastes from a broad and diverse range of sources. In history, it was a group of ancient philosophers who did not belong to or found any recognized school of thought. Instead, they selected doctrines from various schools of thought and combined them into their own.

I’m eclectic in so many areas of my life. When I listen to music, it could be classic rock, country, jazz, opera, bluegrass, folk, rap, or really just about anything.

Like so many other bloggers, I’m multi-passionate. I love learning a little bit about everything. I’d rather know a little about a lot of things than just focus on one thing to the exclusion of all else. Everything is interconnected. You have nature and fractals, Fibonacci and the Golden Ratio and ancient Greek temples. History, religion, art, science, math, they all influence each other.

The start of Technically Eclectic

That’s also how I chose Technical Writing as my college degree. I love reading and writing, and I love math and science. I’m a true STEAM person, STEAM being Science Technology Engineering Art and Math.

Technical writing gave me the opportunity to bring everything together. I studied grammar and composition, but also math and physics, cognitive psychology and engineering, putting it all together with human-centered design and user experience. It was perfect for me.

Technically Eclectic started as a brand similar to how I chose technical writing as a degree and career. When I started Technically Eclectic, I knew I wanted to help others but I just didn’t know how.

Independent tech writer?

At first, my plan was to use my tech writing skills to help people capture their business processes in standard operating procedures (SOP). 

That was difficult because I was just starting out and still learning about marketing my business. I need to solve pain points, and most people don’t realize their productivity pain points need SOPs to help them reach their goals. 

Also, because my day job is being a technical writer, it became a bit of a non-compete agreement conflict with my employer.

Knowledge manager?

Then I thought I could use my knowledge management skills to help businesses capture tribal knowledge from senior employees before they leave or retire. 

The baby boomer generation is retiring, creating a “silver tsunami.” The percentage of workers 55 to 64 has increased from about 10% of the workforce in 2000 to 17% of the workforce in 2020. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics)

Employee knowledge at many companies is often tribal. As the workforce ages, some of the most valuable information will be lost. One of my previous jobs within a large corporation was specifically focused on creating centers of practice to transfer that knowledge.

Nope, digital organizer

I’ve tried all these things, and although these are skills I have, what I’ve found most people want help with is organizing their digital files.

One of my proudest resume bullets for years is when I organized a server used by 180 engineers that hadn’t been cleaned in 10 years. The top-level folder scrolled right multiple times. Nobody knew where anything was, so people either used a lot of time and energy finding things or they’d make multiple copies of things.

It took a number of months, but we created a plan and moved everything

So, how does it work?

The process I developed is the same process I’m refining right now. 

I start with a high-level inventory of all the folders and files. (After I find all the accounts and places files might be hiding.) Doing that inventory uncovers patterns in what content there is.

Next, I put the inventory aside and look instead at what life looks like. What am I creating? How am I working? What are my needs?

Once I know what I have and what I need, I can create an architecture that works and a plan to move it from all the places it’s located to the new architecture.

Follow along

Between working from home and having my kids do school from home, my files have gotten pretty disorganized over the last few years. 

Follow along and I go through my own process with my personal and business files, step by step. 

The best way to keep up-to-date with all new posts is to subscribe to my email list below, but following me on your social media platform of choice (LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter) also works.

If you’re interested in more information, jump on over to my Services page. I have an eBook and a course, or you can book a 15-minute call with me to chat about helping you organize your own files or organizing your files for you.

Hello, World! Nice to meet you. See you ‘round!