Monday, July 14, 2014

This is not my Job

So, this morning I got a query from a colleague about a specification that is being developed for one organization that I volunteer with, regarding information that I have expertise about based on another organization I volunteer with.  We have a pretty good working relationship and regularly ask each other quick questions, and sometimes not so quick questions based on each other's expertise.  We are also working collaboratively together on yet another project.

It isn't my "job" to answer those sort of questions.  But it sure makes my life easier when my questions are answered.  And there's no benefit to me from holding back on this information, because it is readily obtainable from other sources.  Frankly, even the longer questions aren't anything anyone could reasonably bill a client.

This Quid Pro Quo exchange goes on all the time in standards development.  It is what makes my job (and the job of anyone like me) possible.  After all, there is simply no way I could be expert in so many places. And so, I'm thankful for it, and hopefully gracious in answering those quick (and even not-so quick questions).  After all, there is no benefit to developing standards if they are only used by a single organization.


P.S.  Actually, my self-professed job description includes educating industry about Health IT standards, so really it IS part of my job, just not an obvious one.


  1. In these days everything goes viral instantly, it is important to lower the barrier for people to reach credible information. Just like Gresham's law of currency, if people are hoarding undervalued information, overvalued information floods markets. The expenses from people unwittingly following dubious but readily available information are immense. So we should disseminate valuable information as much as possible and encourage open discussions to verify and improve it further. However, who should sponsor such activities? That is the "To be or not to be" question for me ;)

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