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New lead/manager - time to correct spelling?

New lead/manager - time to correct spelling?

New lead/manager - time to correct spelling?

I've just gone from a staff engineer to a lead/manager position over my peers (3 engineers and 1 architect). It's a good relationship so far, but hasn't been strained - yet.

Here's the question: how do you correct spelling issues on draft reports, drawings, etc.? I try to catch the obvious ones, but don't want to nit-pick every detail. Some of them require a LOT of editing. That's not my job.

How do you other managers handle it?

Thanks in advance.

RE: New lead/manager - time to correct spelling?

If it's not your job whose job is it?

Do you have some other peer review process?

Or do you expect that 'as professionals' they won't make any mistakes?

Have you made them aware that the spelling etc. could use improvement and asked them to spend a bit more time on things to do so?

Posting guidelines FAQ731-376: Eng-Tips.com Forum Policies http://eng-tips.com/market.cfm? (probably not aimed specifically at you)
What is Engineering anyway: FAQ1088-1484: In layman terms, what is "engineering"?

RE: New lead/manager - time to correct spelling?

Spelling, grammar, word choices (your, your're) all make a document look professional or illiterate. I would be pissed at a boss that left errors in a paper he had reviewed just because he didn't want to nitpick. If it goes out the door with my name on it, it has my name on it. I want it to be something that conveys my points, not my inadequacies.

David Simpson, PE
MuleShoe Engineering

In questions of science, the authority of a thousand is not worth the humble reasoning of a single individual. Galileo Galilei, Italian Physicist

RE: New lead/manager - time to correct spelling?


Are you dealing with hand drawings and hand-written reports, or is there some sort of software involved?

Spell-checkers are now everywhere and they help to avoid the most obvious eyesore.

"For every expert there is an equal and opposite expert"
Arthur C. Clarke Profiles of the future

RE: New lead/manager - time to correct spelling?

sometimes ... the first report I reviewed the guy (a recent grad) had written "assess" as "asses" ... he whined "well, spell check didn't flag it", "no, 'cause it's a word (the plural of "ass") !"

I agree with the others, if you're reviewing the report you should pick up on errors (even "errors" from your perspective ... "I want it to look like that"). if you find one guy has a lot of errors, and someone else not so many, let the latter guy review the report. why not let each review other's reports in turn ? but careful that one guy doesn't overly nit-pick, or else give him the job of correcting the reports.

if one is particularly poor, why not grammar training ? if they ascend the holy tower of calculation, "look at the technical content, is that good ? (hopefully it is) don't worry about the irrelevant stuff" ... well it's the irrelevant stuff that makes you appear under-educated, and reflects badly on the company.

it is a struggle, accepting someone else's work, we all do the calculation differently, we all report it differently; my barometer is "does it look right ?", and "does something look odd ?".

another day in paradise, or is paradise one day closer ?

RE: New lead/manager - time to correct spelling?

All errors I find are sent back for correction. But it is my job to review reports. Sending mistakes back is part of the training process. We don't learn from doing something correctly. If you are a lead, I assume that training is part of you duty which means finding and sending errors back is, in fact, part of your job. It is more work for me initially, but staff engineers start to realize that it will be less painful for them to review their own work for completeness. As for whining about spell checking...well whining about anything - I have no tolerance. Somebody who whines about being required to do their job properly would probably not be on my staff very long.

RE: New lead/manager - time to correct spelling?

Hell, we used to insert intentionally a couple of spelling or grammar errors in reports for our boss' review (before they went higher). If we did that, he was happy just spotting those. If we had none of those, he would try to rewrite the whole report!

RE: New lead/manager - time to correct spelling?

When I was managing an engineering group, I'd mark up anything that needed to be marked up. It didn't matter to me if it annoyed people or not as the goal was to have a professional document, whether it was for internal use or external. If you nitpick now, it'll get easier later as your team will be more diligent in the future.

I do find rb1957's response rather ironic.

Jeff Mirisola, CSWE
My Blog

RE: New lead/manager - time to correct spelling?

With the time you've spent worrying about and discussing this, you could have fixed hundreds of spelling errors. If it's wrong, point it out. If they don't like it, they should check it before sending it for your review. If you don't want to check it, delegate.

If a report goes out in comic sans font, with grammar and spelling errors, who looks bad?

RE: New lead/manager - time to correct spelling?

sharpen your red pencil! Teach proofreading marks to your direct reports. Nit pick!

I'd suggest it's your job until you've trained somebody else to handle the heavy lifting.


ípapß gordo ainÆt no madre flaca!

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