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The inability to comprehend and assimilate and then bring down on to formal, official and workable documents is a core competency, required by every professional in every field. Everybody is in need of perfect documents but who will write those?  Are we in a documentation mess? This stage is when we manage our life with either substandard documents or documents which are not appropriate to the core. Managing work through those documents becomes an uphill task. That is what unfolds in sector after sector, day in and day out. Deciphering documents has become an uphill task and you will find a few in every organization, practicing this trade. But there is no effort made in improving the quality of documentation.

Documentation is a culture. It has to be created and it can be done only the hard way. People start calling it clerical work. This is to denigrate the same tool which he is working on. The effectiveness and utility of a document can be understood, if we treat every document as  a design document for any activity, work, process or project which you are mandated to do. The Jugaad approach to life and profession can create only Jugaad type documentation. Jugaad type can create a mess and nothing else. The approach is that whatever might be the documentation, you will be able to find street smart type solutions. Document what you do and do what you document is a philosophy it seems will never come to India.

The lack of documentation culture slowly allows degeneration to set in. Documentation is a reflection of your professional knowledge, the understanding of the ecosystem, simultaneously with the exact result which is to be derived out of that document or a series of it. It also means a professional and an organizational commitment to what has been documented and has been provided the organizational or the personal seal. Documents can express the narrative with clarity and finality and can live beyond time and space, to provide the unique lubricant with which the human professional and personal machines runs.

Plagiarism in today’s world has become a birthright and starts pretty early from the student life itself. Leave aside exams, life itself has become a multiple-choice type question. Then where does the rigor of understating and  creating professional writing come from? The gap which is so blatant all around is desperately being tried to be made up  through templates. There have been creators of templates, mechanisms or the processes. Seminal documents live beyond life and generations. Documents represent reality and the nature of growth trajectory in any field, organization or governance. It should not be confused with language wizardry. That is where the fallacy comes from and creates the mother of all messes. The ease with which you create documents and communication puts you on to a totally different footing.


Sanjay Sahay

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