I’ve been practicing documenting every decision and piece of information that might be of interest for the last few years with clients. It has lead to increasingly asymmetric impact just because the stuff I work on stays around for longer. And is therefore valuable to the organisation for longer, even when I’m not there anymore.
But I have just found the best example of how powerful it is when people write down institutional knowledge: The GitLab Handbook… It’s a mind-blowing tome, some 13000 pages of highly actionable insights and information tid bits like this:
Don’t wait. When you have something of value like a potential blog post or a small fix, implement it straight away. Right now, everything is fresh in your head and you have the motivation. Inspiration is perishable. Don’t wait until you have a better version. Don’t wait until you record a better video. Don’t wait for an event (like Contribute). Inventory that isn’t released is a liability since it has to be managed, becomes outdated, and you miss out on the feedback you would have received had you implemented it straight away.The GitLab Handbook
Do you realise how powerful this is? How much time just writing things down could save you in the aggregate?
Don’t wait. Start writing things down today.
(incidentally, I’ve been working on a service for networked thought specifically to solve the issue of taking more valuable notes. It’s not ready yet, but if you’re interested you can find it here.)