Posted by: peterhact | April 20, 2009

Is a limited education a disadvantage in today’s Business Environment?

I don’t mean a lack of products knowledge, but, rather Grammar, spelling, an understanding and use of dipthongs, etc, etc. Don’t ask me about Latin, no idea if i can’t look it up on the ‘net.

What level of education is required to be an effective  and successful business person?

What  can be done, so as to improve the level of education and understanding of language and effective communication of your  message to others?

Considering the levels of people ‘s education in the maketplace, ranging from basic high school up to university degrees, what is a comfortable balance, considering the access to the internet, spell checkers and grammar checkers?



  1. It would appear to me that a lot of language-related tasks are now handed off to professionals. As one of those professionals, I have mixed feelings about this. Obviously, it’s good for our industry, and it means that having an obsessive thirst for grammatical knowledge and a passion for creating beautiful prose is a valued skill. But it also makes me despair when I see such simple mistakes made by people who really ought to know better.

    I suspect it’s a product of the increasingly niche environments we find ourselves in. Where ‘basic’ skills such as spelling and grammar were previously considered important to management, now management itself can take all your time. Just keeping up with trends, being seen at the right functions, and attending the right conferences can be a full time job, and that’s before you even hold a staff meeting.

    Likewise, reading the right books and blogs, keeping up with language trends, and ensuring your content conforms to appropriate UX trends and readibility guidelines can consume one’s waking hours too.

    Perhaps it’s time to let go of the ‘good all-rounder’ management model, and allow a little bit of specificity to creep in. Let the managers manage, and the writers get on with making sure their spelling is correct …


  2. I think management should make available simple but effective courses in spelling and grammar to those employees who are interested in improving their overall presentation and career prospects.

    Many times a student may be disinterested in learning something while at school, but keen to learn later in life when they understand the benefits of what is being taught.

    Also, other factors and life circumstances can influence a student’s ability to focus on academic studies while at school.

    If employers were able to offer the opportunity for self-improvement of literacy skills everybody would benefit in the long run.

    This is not to say that employees should be judged on their literacy skills, as this is only one of many skills an employee will bring to the table.

  3. Formal education I don’t believe teaches us much. Except the basics. And we’ve learnt them by the time we reach high school. If we haven’t, we’re not doing it right.
    But literacy and the ability to express one’s self is a very good judge of character.
    If someone cannot be bothered to make sure what they write is done properly, their diligence with everything else is called into question. And should that affect one’s career? Most definitely.

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