Remember Things

via dml.ucdavis.edu

via dml.ucdavis.edu

It’s something so simple, yet we hardly think twice about it.

I haven’t been doing this long, but I’ve found something simple that can really put you in the good graces of sources.

People respond positively to you remembering the little things. It’s just like outside of work with a loved one. They like it when you remember birthdays and special occasions. The same goes with sources.

Of all the people I know, I think I have the worst memory, bar none. I have to write everything down in a one-subject notebook. I carry it with me at all times, so I can have it handy whenever I need it. That notebook keeps me in the loop with everything. Without that notebook, I’m nothing.

Remembering things is key in this line of work. Sources don’t have to tell you that they want you to remember little details, but it’s almost expected. When a source tells you something personal, you better either write it down because when you talk to them in the future you need to remember it.

I’m not talking about major details here. I’m talking about the small things.

While talking to sources at length for months-in-a-row, you get to know people and know them very well. You find out how they talk, what they like and don’t like and who they are. Some people are easier to talk to then others, but should be able to figure out who likes to talk off the record, who likes to joke around and who wants to know what’s going on with other towns.

It’s almost as if you have to change yourself to each source. It’s not something they teach you in school, but how can they? Each source is different and you have to take it all in stride.

And don’t worry about forgetting things, shit happens.

Sources are humans, too. They forget things just as often.

Jonathan

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