Do you really like what you do?
This is the incredulous question I am asked when people find out that I work in Records and Information Management. Even some of my closest friends have questioned “Why”? Then comes the rephrase, “Ok, it’s a job, but do you really mean you like it????” When they find I have studied in the field and have tertiary qualifications, that is when their eyes glaze over! I have even been asked in an interview, how I will cope with the job being boring?? My answer, “Who said it was boring?”.
Yes, I not only like what I do, I love it and I have chosen to do it. Why would I not? I get to be: a negotiator, teacher, listener, interpreter, business analyser, technology user and a private detective (finding what no one else can). Skills I use confidentiality and sensitivity, common sense, patience and adaptability. If you really insist, perhaps I am a little anal but I like to think of this as attention to detail. I get to associate with other like-minded colleagues, join RIMPA, it is challenging, there is plenty of variety and you never run out of things to do.
I especially like when I’m asked to find something NOW! The request could be vague, like “You know the document, I had it last week, black typing on white paper.” (seriously did happen). My colleagues and I know to ask for more details: date range, subject, is it to do with project XYZ? (we know what’s goin’ down), perhaps a report or correspondence and the search starts gets broken down and options can be presented. Neither of us may actually know what it is they want but I guarantee they’ll be grateful for options presented by the sometimes-invisible Records Manager.
Given that information is one of an organisation’s greatest assets, along with its employees, and the current exponential growth rate in the production of information, my recordkeeping colleagues and I provide a valuable service indeed. Without up to date and verified information, an organisation could make costly decisions. I consider it a privilege to work in Records and Information Management. And yes, I like what I do.
Author | Gunta Bajars