Sometimes it takes special knowledge to understand the dynamics of work relationships. Astrology is one tool that can help you understand people you work with. Following is a summary of how the astrological sun signs manifest in technical writers.

Aries-first to start, first one done. Their work may not always be accurate, but they are very competitive and work well independently. In fact, they prefer to work independently, since they don't take instruction well. If you want something finished in time, give it to an Aries. They tend to walk into walls, trip over chairs and tables, and dance to the beat of a different drummer. Works well with Aquarius.

Taurus-deliberate and persistent. They might be somewhat slow, but they are thorough and accurate. They can correct the mistakes the Aries makes. Put them in charge of finish work such as graphics or layout, they have an eye for quality and can excel at artwork.

Gemini-the natural sign for a writer. You may need to watch over them carefully, since their quick mind tends to flit from one subject to another. Gemini is easily bored, and needs to work at more than one project at a time. Their mind has a natural bent for language, and they can make up excuses at a moment's notice.

Cancer-very well organized, even though they will deny it. Put them in charge of the source control system, they will always be able to find everything. Can be somewhat moody, but chocolate can bring them around.

Leo-will take credit for everything that's done well. Put this one in charge of the team building events, they will make everyone feel welcome and bring a playful mood to the group. Doesn't take criticism well, so if you need to correct their work, be tactful and diplomatic. Always tell them how much you appreciate their work, and they will continue to do well.

Virgo-this one is a natural editor. They also make good testers, they gravitate toward flaws and almost always find them. Prefers not to lead. Don't seat them next to the Leo or the Sagittarius, or fireworks will result. If the Virgo is a writer rather than editor, they will drive the engineers crazy by asking questions (all in the interests of accuracy, you understand). Surpasses Capricorn in penny-pinching.

Libra-build your design and graphics teams with Libras and Tauruses, and your manuals will win awards. Works well with the Leo, and in general tries to maintain harmony within the entire work group. Don't ask them to make decisions, their response will always be, "well, what would you like?" or "what do YOU think?"

Scorpio-put them in charge of research, they excel at investigation. Generally very quiet, since they are listening to everyone else. They tend to be jealous of the Leo's ability to be the center of attention. Respect their right to privacy, and they will keep secrets for you.

Sagittarius-this one was born a project manager. They dislike details, and don't make good proofreaders or copyeditors. They do, however, excel at developmental editing. If your team is full of Sagittarians, Geminis, and Leos, you may need a whip to turn their attention away from jokes and cartoons.

Capricorn-if they're not the lead or manager, they have ambitions to that position. These people have a highly developed sense of guilt, and are the masters of deadpan. If Aries wants to be first, Capricorn wants to be the best. Perfection is their aim. They also do well at project planning. If you want something done within budget, Capricorn is the one to do it (we're talking stingy). They will never show anger, but beware of retribution!

Aquarius-if Aquarius is into technical writing, it's because they like technology and love learning new things. Aquarius is as curious as Gemini, but more disciplined. Aquarius is likely to be the former system administrator who got tired of being called at 3 a.m. on a Sunday to come fix the system crash.

Pisces-like Aquarius, Pisces also is fascinated with technology. They tend to be sci-fi fans. They behave just like the person sitting next to them; it's not conscious, they're just naturally intuitive. Pisces can also be good at graphic design, due to their well-developed imagination. If you want someone to write the manual without first having a product to examine, Pisces is the one to do it.


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