The thought process that went into the development of the outline for Beyond (you can see the outline in the last post) led me to focus on a question that every writer must address:
Who is the audience for this book?
The reality that became apparent is the audience for Beyond may be largely or completely different than the audience for Writing Operating Procedures! The target reader of the original book is pretty well defined: the writer. Not that only writers can benefit from understanding procedure intent and execution, but the procedure writer would be the primary beneficiary.
But what happens when the procedure is completed, and now it enters its life cycle? Suddenly, a bunch of people who may have had no part in writing the procedure are now expected to ensure the procedure is maintained and effectively used. If you look at the procedure life-cycle diagram (Operating Procedure Life Cycle I), the audience for Beyond will include anyone responsible for the actions illustrated in the book.
For the writer/prospective book seller, that should be good news! The audience is literally huge!
That wasn’t the point I was trying to make…but any organization will have some group of individuals who would logically take on the responsibilities defined in Beyond. The larger the organization, typically, the larger the number of participants in the procedure’s life cycle.
What does this mean to the organization? For one, the responsibilities entailed in procedure maintenance must be clearly established and communicated. A set of policies (and perhaps even procedures) may be advisable. But beyond establishing responsibilities, the organization has the opportunity to look at how it approaches its processes.
Ultimately, then, Beyond the Writing of Operating Procedures is written to as many people in the organization as will be expected to maintain and improve essential processes. I have been blessed (burdened?) with fulfilling each of the responsibilities at one time or another in my career, and I intend to use that experience both in describing the actions and describing how to create a cooperative environment in which the procedure life cycle is managed to the maximum benefit of the process — and by extension, the organization.