By Hoda Nassef
What is the meaning of “Reporting”?
In journalism or the media, ‘Reporting’ means that the Reporter affiliated to a certain newspaper, magazine, or Television Agency, reports facts and events truthfully, as he or she sees it, whether the facts are considered ‘Breaking News’ or certain elements of the current news and current events, making certain that the news being reported are facts, and not rumours.
At work, ‘Reporting’ is information about events which have occurred or which we believe can occur. These events should be considered important enough in that they may have influenced the possibility of reaching the objectives Management have established.
Reporting includes an analysis and description of the reason for the deviation in our plan and which lead to necessary corrective measures because of the changed conditions. Reporting, also, contains a description of our expected future (what we think will happen in our external and internal world). From this we can decide on actions based on this analysis.
It is in reporting that we get the feedback from our actions. This information is needed to acquire where we stand in relation to the world around us. It is fundamental that we create our way to success based on our knowledge of the world around us. We have to think and act from the outside, in.
In reporting, we sometimes also describe why our (work) operation was started and what has happened externally as well as internally, to the organization, over a longer period of time. We do this so we understand reasons and connections. In this way we maintain those values in our culture which are important for our success. Reporting may also include photos in journalism, to emphasize true events, as ‘a photo is worth a thousands words.’
Furthermore, situations do not always develop as we had planned. Trends and events identified in our plan may have changed; such as the implementation of new regulations and technical innovations that may have been initiated. Sometimes results exceed our expectations and sometimes well fall short of the expected results. Therefore we need good reporting so that we can take suitable corrective measures.
As we all know, the world around us changes constantly and will continue to do so, whether politically, economically or environmentally. Changes in climate, illnesses, and religions are examples of things that have strongly influenced our present situation. In the recent past new techniques, breakthrough in democracy, and the influence of labour unions have all left deep impressions on the development of our societies.
In itself, the fact that time marches on means constant change in everyone's life; i.e. parents grow old and children grow up. The process of change, however, is happening faster today than ever before. At least changes are dismantling faster. Therefore, we have to change in order to influence and steer this development and to function well in the new situation
In reporting, the growth of our information society, migration, changes in international trade, and the process of democratization and its consequences in the eastern countries of the world, are some of the revolutions that are obvious today.
These are examples of large revolutionary changes. A closer look at our own everyday life also shows tangible changes. We can't quite make our budget or we exceed it, or, the project won't be ready on time and/or will cost more than expected. In the hospitality industry, maybe our guests leave us and go to our competitors. We find it more and more difficult to recruit certain categories of personnel, or labour contracts become more expensive than we originally calculated. Key employees leave because we no longer keep up with developments in their discipline and therefore can't offer them stimulating work. Everyday we get reports of deviations, which force us to analyse the situation and take corrective measures.
The probability that we will make good decisions increases when we know where we stand, what our immediate world looks like and how it is developing We can work on and learn from our experiences and we can avoid making the same mistakes again. Through an analysis of the situation, we can take advantage of the opportunities and avoid the threats that surrounds us. We can be aware of the external events that make changes necessary if we are to survive and be successful.
Finally, through thought, careful analysis based on facts makes it possible for us to do away with unhealthy ideas which hamper our development. A true analysis of our development, particularly a financial one, can provide us with signals as to whether we should continue certain operations which are not profitable or in other ways do not contribute to fulfilment of our objectives. Perhaps there are signals in certain areas that we ought to put more effort into. We must, therefore, strive to base our decisions on a thorough and true analysis of the situation.