Vani’s Musings

Archive for September 2007

No, I am not speaking of the gifts we exchange during weddings and other events. I want to focus on the importance of communication skills, which play a vital role in interactive forums like trainings, conferences, lectures and their ilk.

 Most of us in our professional life would have come across trainings at least once. I am witness now to one such training program which makes me laugh and cry because of the very poor communication skills of our trainer. 

 We have grown to believe that a teacher is like God, but unfortunately, many teachers, or people in associated industry have really underdeveloped communication skills. They would be masters in their chosen field, but because they cannot communicate well, lose out on reaching their audiences.

 My trainer himself, is equipped with nearly half a dozen degrees, but is extremely bad at speaking grammatically correct English. And he claims to train employees at reputed organizations. I am sure there would be hundreds of nit pickers like me who would concentrate more on his faults and miss out on the vital aspects of what he would want us to understand. Why do this? And it is pretty important to lose your native accent. Why give a clue of which part of the country you belong to by way of speaking English as though you were speaking your native tongue?  Why don’t people give the language the respect it deserves by using it a little more sensitively? 

In the global scenario, it is very important for a person to be as much comfortable with soft skills, as their technical expertise. We cannot present ourselves as a nation that is only technically good but very poor in communication. And I don’t think it is such an uphill task either. After all, English is the language we use to communicate with most part of the world. 

 I feel very guilty that I only find fault, but that’s what catches my attention. And by way of good communication skills, I don’t suggest the use of heavy complicated words in our day to day conversation either. All I feel is they must try to be grammatically correct and ensure that at their age, they must not make silly spelling errors, because their word would be taken very seriously and people would use the same spellings and same language in future when they would be asked to, And then, if there were to be someone pointing out this error, it would reflect very poorly on the trainer. 

My point is this. If you are or want to be a faculty or trainer or just about anyone who is part of an interactive forum, please, please brush up your communication skills and if need be, attend a couple of English speaking classes to hone your talent. It would be of great help in making your audience understand what you want to convey, in a much better manner. 

 It is very similar to serving good food in an unclean vessel. However tasty the food may be, our eyes would warn us not to eat it. Even the simplest dish is made tasty by presenting it in a good manner. 

 How many of you share my feeling or think otherwise? A penny for your thoughts.  

Advertisements

A long hiatus……Its time I made up my mind to write something. So here goes. 

I have to endure a long journey to work, coupled with traffic jams and bottlenecks (of course, which working Bangalorean does not endure that?).

Boring bus journeys can be very lively if one were to keep their eyes and ears open to their surroundings. 

In the mornings, I generally hear the same dialog “Ayyo….the traffic in Bangalore…..” this is mostly from the people who work for Private Establishments, and of course, our dear BMTC drivers. I now sympathize with most of the drivers for their patience in driving bus loads of people to their destinations.

There is another segment, that of ………. ahem …….. ahem………. Govt Servants, who spend most of the travel time discussing CLs, ELs, DA, GPF etc….then the bunch of School and College Students….this is mostly a giggly lot who isn’t very much bothered about being late or so. I think they are the ones who enjoy journeys most. Then the immigrant workers who come from the Northern states, haggling with the conductor for change.

 In the evenings, it is the same mixture of people, but the topics generally range from the day’s work to the evening cooking to the movie they watched in the weekend to the rising cost of living.  

There is a separate group of people, who are tight lipped and have a sort of “Touch me not” attitude. They look as though they have forgotten how to smile and the world rests on their slender shoulders. They keep aloof and snap at others at the slightest inconvenience. 

Many enjoy a much needed power nap and I envy those lucky souls who can fall asleep at the drop of a hat. 

Then there are people who aren’t everyday travelers. Their discussion, if women, is usually about mother-in-law problems, children’s school or the latest soap on TV etc. The men usually keep aloof. I haven’t come across two men, complete strangers to each other strike a conversation. That art comes easily to us lady folk.  

Then there is me. I usually do not talk much, but once there is a familiar face, the ball starts rolling. Another habit of mine is to read all the sign boards and hoardings thoroughly. I like to find spelling mistakes and grammar errors in them, and I have a hearty laugh thinking of them whenever I recollect them. For instance, there is this sign board of some quack doctor who has pitched a tent near one of the signals I have to cross each day. I will try to give a verbatim account of the sign board displayed. 

“SOCIAL WORK IS GOD WORK, DOCTOR FOR ALL ILLNESS. DON’T BE AFRAID OR SHY. COME TO CURE FOR ALL PROBLEMS. BP, SUGAR, DIABETESS, POLIO, HURT, WEAKNESS, TOILET, RED AND YELLOW, CHILDREN WEAKNESS, POLIO, LAKWA, SEX BEFORE MARRIAGE, JEANS PROBLEM. CHECKING FEE- RS 10. HOME COMING-20 RS.” 

Each morning, I read this and wonder what Red and Yellow may mean, and does Sugar and Diabetess mean two different illnesses? And what exactly do people with “Jeans Problem” suffer from?

  I enjoy my journeys and feel that they are the best time for people to observe their fellow beings, and a chance to connect back to themselves. My journeys also give me a fresh insight into my city. Each day is a new discovery, though the route and destination is the same.  

I know most of you travel to work by your vehicles, but would love to hear from you, your experiences. Do let me know.