The Payoff Of Writing Things Down

I’m interested in the different ways people carry out research; academic, applied as well as for personal interests. Part of this is capturing the ideas and thoughts as they come to you, anywhere and at anytime, and ‘writing them down’ is obviously a fairly key step, although often neglected.

Here’s an example story involving Richard Branson, as part of his Five Secrets to Business Success:

A good leader does not get stuck behind a desk. I’ve never worked in an office – I’ve always worked from home – but I get out and about, meeting people. It seems I am traveling all the time but I always have a notebook in my back pocket to jot down questions, concerns or good ideas.

If I’m on a Virgin Atlantic plane, I make certain to get out and meet all the staff and many of the passengers. If you meet a group of Virgin Atlantic crew members, you are going to have at least 10 suggestions or ideas. If I don’t write them down, I may remember only one the next day. By writing them down, I remember all 10. Get out and shake hands with all the passengers on the plane, and again, there are going to be people who had a problem or have a suggestion. Write it down, make sure that you get their names, get their e-mail addresses, and make sure the next day that you respond to them.

The best site I’ve come across on the many different aspects of good note-taking is Notes About Notes – there’s a lot more to ‘notes’ than you might imagine!
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