Friday, March 13, 2009


Yesterday my friend commented about one of our professors being lazy because he gave questions from the book. And I started thinking not about the professor but the ability to judge.
We seldom judge when we are in school. But as we grow up we start judging. Judging in my view is an inherent ability of maturity. The ability to judge decides your mate, your job, your life. You judge because you start thinking of alternatives and benchmark the alternatives with reality. For e.g. - when you think of changing a job you start thinking of best alternatives. In a B-school there is a term I have learnt – it’s called opportunity cost.
The point is simple actually. In schooldays your parents judge for you and you consider your parents as God (I can even relate to something in Gita session here). So you take their words at face value but as you grow up you take your own decisions and so you need to judge.

Monday, March 02, 2009

What is the difference between talking and talking in writing?

Let’s rephrase the question. What is the difference between writing in writing and talking in writing. Regardless of whether you get it or not just carry on reading.
The difference can be easily noticed when you read a written piece. There is a person in my current batch of MBA who is a good orator. Words come to her mouth like air comes to the lungs.
The most noticeable thing about oratory is the seamless combination of spontaneity and depth. The more spontaneously the intellectual thoughts come out of you, the more you are perceived as a good orator. But there is another way to be a good orator. You have to connect the dots (i.e. gather ideas from other places) and present it in an eloquent manner. The person I mentioned above belongs to the second category.
There has been a timeless debate on content vs. presentation. If you are good at any one of them then you can be called a good orator. It is universally acknowledged that good orators have the capacity to move audiences.
Now, intellectual thoughts can emerge from three means:

From your imagination (start from the scratch type)

From other people’s imagination (books, movies etc)

A mixture of both (reading a book generates new ideas which can then lead to original thoughts- in our RM subject that original thought is taught as a gap)

In the first method merely the content will suffice to show your calibre. In the second event you have to be creative in linking the dots. The third method is an extrapolation of dots into virgin territories.
Getting back to the discussion on reading in writing, I once saw a write-up from the lady. Reading the document felt as if the lady was talking!!! When you write something on paper then you mean to write and not talk. Isn’t it? Words are meticulously put to arrive at a “proper” conclusion. The thought might be spontaneous but the way it is presented is not. In an oratory the way of presentation is spontaneous. Notice the examples below:

No one doubts the fact that good orators have the capacity to move audiences

Good orators have the capacity to move audiences. No one doubts that!!!

Which one conveys talking in writing and which one conveys writing in writing?
I think that when you mean to write something then you should stop talking. The two mediums are sacrosanct mediums and they should be mutually exclusive. I am disregarding the fact that you are preparing from a prepared text. I do not like that either. That one is writing in talking.
So, in my view let there be a ban on prepared speeches. Let there be a ban on talking in writing.