We all make notes in one or the other forms at different stages of life. Starting from the school times when we had the habit of making notes in rough and then fair in the subject copy. Or in our college days when we had only rough notes to study for exams. Making notes is still a good habit as it allows you to not miss any of your ideas or thoughts to go into the black hole. Many startups were also started by making rough sketches on the bar table napkins.. 😅
With the increasing number of productive tools like google docs, OneNote and Evernote, it became very easy to be always in touch with your notes anywhere. I have collected a few reasons or importance of maintaining notes, even if those are rough notes;
- No thought/idea is missed
- Get to a clearer picture
- Better discussions
- Track down the past work
- Personal knowledge base
No thought/idea is missed
Mostly it happens that we are busy with some work and just get an idea or thought about a totally different task. It is very important to not let that idea vanish away. Thus, instead of thinking about it too much or polish it later, it is best to write it down in our rough notebook and go back to it when done with the current work. This way, neither your current task will be impacted nor the new idea will vanish like other old thoughts.
Get to clear picture
The best way to understand anything is to start writing about it or making rough diagrams. When you write about something and start adding the details, you will realize all the gaps which you were not aware of. It also helps in prioritizing the tasks.
When we are working in teams, it is best to have clear communication in discussions. We can have a nice discussion if things are explained with diagrams. Thus whiteboards are part of every office. In the WFH scenario, online whiteboards are filling this gap.
Track down the Past Work
We have that moment in our professional lives when we think about the past discussion and wonder why we took a particular conclusion. It is always helpful if we have notes from that time and can refer them to understand the thought process.
Personal Knowledge Base
I remember taking down rough notes in meetings, dev discussions, knowledge transfer sessions and even while coding. It is always good as I have my own notes for the explanation. These are not very good quality notes but surely enough to read and understand.
Last but not the least, rough notes are always our companion in learning new things and implementing our knowledge in professional life. Even if they are not very fancy but always help us to clear our thoughts and communicate them to our team-mates.