Martha has an interesting post about people sending you huge
chunks of info (documents), instead of being a sort of editor/filter
and summarizing the point you need to know:
Now, instead of digesting the vast amounts of information at their
disposal and actually formulating a strategy, account execs forward
bytes and bytes of documents. Click! Just attach the PDF, and you feel
like you’ve done your job!!! But you haven’t. It’s like getting all
the source material for a big college paper, but no thesis statement
or cogent argument.
Worse, many times the people providing the info (the client and the
account folks) either don’t want to or don’t have time to process the
information at all, so the writer ends up being the only person who’s
really thinking about the project and how to construct the message. I
can do that, sure, but what ever happened to two heads being better
than one? It worries me, because a lot of times I’m guessing about
stuff, and nobody’s got my back to be sure I’m right. That makes me
feel a bit queasy, as I’m playing with people’s livelihoods.
This certainly happens a lot in the software world, esp. on large
projects where there’s lot of sub-projects that depend on each other.
Instead of just telling someone that they need to use the
such-and-such service from a framework, and how to use it, you just
send them the docs for the entire framework with a little note
that says, “use the such-and-such framework…it’s in, like, section
188.8.131.52.1.45.2 or something.”