Employers say the grammar skills of people they hire are getting worse, The Wall Street Journal reports.
The culprit: the informality of email, texting and Twitter. Most participants in a recent survey by the Society for Human Resource Management and AARP blame younger workers for the skills gap. But Tamara Erickson, an author and consultant on generational issues, says the problem isn’t a lack of skills among twenty- and thirtysomethings. Accustomed to texting and social networking, “they’ve developed a new norm,” Erickson says.
About 45% of 430 employers surveyed by SHRM and AARP said they were increasing employee-training programs to improve employees’ grammar and other skills.
Others use templates to reduce the chance of errors or take a team approach. Christopher Telano, chief internal auditor at the New York City Health and Hospitals Corp., has employees circulate their reports to co-workers to review for accuracy and grammar. He coaches auditors to use action verbs such as “verify” and “confirm” and tells them to write simply.
Clearly, many managers feel passionately about grammar. Administrative professionals who share that passion will find themselves at an advantage in getting ahead at work.
— Adapted from “This Embarrasses You and I*,” Sue Shellenbarger, The Wall Street Journal.
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