Yesterday I had the opportunity to work with a manager from another company. I was asked to present a report on n-tiered architecture. I turned in my report, and about ten minutes later the report came back to me with comments and a Post-It telling me to resubmit the report with the necessary corrections.
Mustering up all of my editorial knowledge, I immediately got to work. I carefully reviewed all of the comments, then reviewed the original text, grammar and technical information, and was unable to see where the problem lay. Then I saw it: a flaw so glaring that I was forced to rewrite the entire document. It's like one of those images that spans ten pages... you really have to take a few steps back to see the big picture.
So I rewrote the document. I did not keep anything that was already there; I rewrote every last word of it. I spent countless minutes refining, analyzing and editing this document, and at the end of the day I had one of the greatest documents the management world has ever seen.
I rewrote it using Word Art.
That's right! None of the words, nor their order, changed. I just rewrote the entire document using the incredibly cheesy Word Art that is found on most managerial documents.
And wouldn't you know, the manager loved it! My name was even brought up at their weekly staff meeting. Their entire Middle Management division has been asking me for autographs all week.
This brings up a point that all of us would be remiss to forget: management loves Word Art. In fact, Word Art, along with Visio diagrams and pie charts, are the core syntax of management's language. If you're not speaking in Word Art, then it's almost like you're speaking in French - some of the words may be familiar to your audience, but you'll still be despised, called a coward, forced to wear a mime suit and get the crap kicked out of you.