The map v/s the compass

One of the feedback I received during a recent exit interview was to prepare a manual for all the positions we are hiring. The candidate believed that it would make things easier for the new hires.

When I talked to the project team leaders, they were of the view that other than documenting a few login credentials and workflows, there is nothing else to record. Every person just has to come up with the best approach possible given the constraints and circumstances and make things happen. The method is not important and there is always a better method, and hence, there’s no point wasting time in recording each and every step.

In almost all work that matters, this is true. When technology keeps changing and makes things easier for us, it doesn’t make sense to document anything as it’s just a waste of resources. Having a map or a dummies guide is useless when technology has made things as easier as it can get.

Instead, we must spend our resources on knowing which direction we need to go. Once we are aware of where we want to go, we can just come up with the best possible approach to reach there. Calibrating our compass is more important than teaching or learning from the map.

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