Establishing Policy for Information Resources

Opportunity to Have Influence

All companies have some form of corporate policy starting with the delegation of authority then defining general goals for operating the organization. At one point in my career, my company rewrote the corporate policies, reducing the number down to about a dozen. Some years later, some company leaders realized that there was no acknowledgement that information was a resource of the company that should be formally managed.

Part of my job had been to maintain company procedures that implemented corporate policies, which forced me to be familiar with the old policy system and learn how to work within the new system. My director asked me to propose a draft of a corporate policy on information resources. The structure and outline of the policy was fixed, but the content was a clean slate. I referred to the old policy system for applicable content and learned about legal concepts related to intellectual property.

My director enthusiastically accepted the draft, then I heard nothing more for months. What finally emerged as approved policy had many refinements from my draft, but roughly 80% of my initial content remained. This experience reinforced how much influence a person at a lower level can have when given the opportunity to prepare draft policy and procedure documents.

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