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Language/Grammar skills - Realistic importance in today's consulting space ?

 
#1 Language/Grammar skills - Realistic importance in today's consulting space ?
22/02/2011 21:52

Mr Nice

Let me begin by thanking all those who had responded to 'Unemployed benefits ... ' blog which I started earlier. Good to see so many responses/point of views.

Appreciate your comment on following :

What is the importance of English grammar skills in the consultancy space given that so many consulting areas are highly technical (e.g, IT, Energy, Utilities,Aerospace, Finance - hedge funds, derivatives, M&A,etc.) and given that now-a-days most of our assignments are outside UK (remember markets like Russia, Germany, Singapore, China & India which are growing and prefer their own culture/language over and above the English language) ?

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#2 RE: Language/Grammar skills - Realistic importance in today's consulting space ?
23/02/2011 16:41

ABC to Mr Nice (#1)

Is there a context for this question or are you just trying to start a pointless discussion with a very predictable outcome?

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#3 RE: Language/Grammar skills - Realistic importance in today's consulting space ?
24/02/2011 00:16

Polish Plumber to ABC (#2)

Language skills are very important. Clarity of thought is important as well.

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#4 RE: Language/Grammar skills - Realistic importance in today's consulting space ?
24/02/2011 09:07

Mr Nice to Polish Plumber (#3)

ABC,

I have seen many forum members commenting on another member's writing skills which I personally feel is a little biased in a way. But then I realized

(as many of the recruitment consultants on this forum might also have realized by now), many or should I say 'most of the assignments' in the market today are to far flung regions like China/India/Germany/US/Russia where having 'assignment specific skills are more important' than English language skills. Have also noticed that countries such as Russia/Germany/France prefer to have candidates who can speak the region specific languages in addition to job specific competencies.

In such a market scenario, how important do you think should we comment on somebody's writing skills (for christ's sake its not even their first language ).

How many of us from UK can speak atleast one other language than English ? And please be honest with eachother.

And since this forum is on internet and is supposed to be 'Global' in nature, I think commenting on a candidates English language skills from a 'Right way to pronounce/grammar skills' is a biased approach one has taken.

Therefore thought of inviting comments on the thought.

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#5 RE: Language/Grammar skills - Realistic importance in today's consulting space ?
24/02/2011 09:55

rc to Mr Nice (#4)

put yourself in the client position - if I am paying top dollar day rates for a consultant, not only do I expect them to have the requisite process, technical and inustry skills, but also to be articulate and persuasive. I do not expect to do rework on their deliverables to correct poor expression or basic errors. Consultants need to be the complete professional package. Sorry if that makes life harder - professionals in other international industries (journalists, lawyers, diplomats etc) would not even see this as an item for debate..

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#6 RE: Language/Grammar skills - Realistic importance in today's consulting space ?
24/02/2011 12:03

Mr Nice to rc (#5)

Well Diplomats & Journalists cann't be considered in the 'Consultant profile' pool, can they ?

I just came from Russia where my 35 page recommedation report was converted to Russian language by a translator so that the client could comprehend it well. That being said,taking the context of IT manuals (assume you hinted that in your blog) I remember from my time at Accenture, we had A1 level analysts (graduate entry scheme) who took care of mundane spell checks/ font errors. (Not the main responsibility of a consultant actually !) I think the content matters more than the communication medium !

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#7 RE: Language/Grammar skills - Realistic importance in today's consulting space ?
24/02/2011 12:53

rc to Mr Nice (#6)

I'm talking professionalism, hence the comparison to other industries. Leaving aside non-native speakers, poor spelling and grammar is indicative of an incomplete education and sloppy use of language leads to ambiguous, imprecise recommendations. It's not either/or on content versus communication - you need to get both right. Yes, get a grunt to check the presentational minutiae of fonts etc, but your content is bound in the language in which you choose to express it.

I take a similar hard line on verbal articulacy. I would not hire a solicitor who chose to speak to me in 'street English' and I have rejected consulting candidates on the same basis, innit.

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