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Mom, I’m failing English!

Mom, I’m failing English!

| April 27, 2016

It’s a good thing I live with a 2nd grader because, apparently, I’ve got some learning to do in order to achieve a superior command of the English language!  Peggy recently came to me with a list compiled by the editors of the American Heritage Dictionaries titled: 100 Words Every High School Graduate Should Know.  Her grandson, Noah, who will graduate this spring, received the list from his high school in anticipation of the big day.  Feeling confident and slightly beyond high school graduation myself, I perused the list and quickly shattered my dream of winning the title of “Ms. American Heritage Dictionary.”  The words proved tough, real tough in many cases.  Not being able to define, let alone recognize, so many of the words included on the list caused me to question what it takes to communicate effectively.  Is it big words?  Do long, flowing sentences with adjectives and adverbs sprinkled about for greater clarity and description, along with the appropriate punctuation, resonate with people, or are these sentences simply viewed as run-ons (despite what our English teachers might think!)?  Is it concise messaging that works?  Should one inject humor into writing to communicate effectively, even with serious subject matter?  Think about that.  We all communicate very differently, and I would argue, infrequently used words found in the dictionary do not an effective raconteur (look that one up!) make!  My mom sends me delightful text messages with words she clearly conceives in the interest of keeping the text short, but she usually gets the message out there without further clarification required by me.  It can happen without the words on the list.  According to Advanced Life Skills, 85% of our success in life is directly attributable to our communication skills, both verbal and non-verbal.  No matter the education level, the intent and commitment or the knack for using ginormous words we may contrive for effect, we, no doubt, will struggle with success without effective communication with people.    

Why the blog on communication?  We strive for relationships with you, our clients, which are long, fruitful, fun and mutually beneficial; communicating with you in a style you prefer is important to us!  Reach out to Gwyther & Holt, share your preferences, and look forward to our office making your communication style one of our top priorities.  If you like big words, we know a good dictionary or two. 

c u l8r!  It’s time to study with Quinlan.


PS – Congratulations Noah! 

PSS – 100 Words to Make You Sound Great and 100 Words Almost Everyone Mispronounces are two of several others on the American Heritage site…fun stuff you should check out!

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