Resource: Kyle Wiens on Grammar in the Business World

The author of this article in the Harvard Business Review is adamant about grammar:

I Won't Hire People Who Use Poor Grammar. Here's Why.
by Kyle Wiens in the Harvard Business Review

It's a pretty funny little article, and if you look at the URL for the webpage, you will see a hilarious URL truncation (although I guess that is just accidental, ha ha). Anyway, as Wiens explains, he gives prospective employees a grammar test. That is not a common practice, and I am sure it will not ever be a common practice, but I am glad to say that the work I ask you to do in this class would allow you to pass such a test easily.

I wouldn't characterize myself as a grammar "stickler" as Wiens does here. I'm not even sure I would characterize good grammar as being a sign of "attention to detail" in the way that Wiens does. My impression is that a lot of people have actually never been taught the rules of written English, at least not in a meaningful way with meaningful practice.

What I am sure about, though, is that the quest for good grammar is part of a larger quest for CLARITY, which is something that I think is important in all kinds of ways. The world is so confusing already! We are bombarded by information, often conflicting information, from all kinds of sources. We are often interacting with people whose life experiences, assumptions, and expectations could be very different from our own. Communication, as a result, is HARD. That means we need to do everything we can to achieve clarity in our efforts to communicate. There are many elements to the quest for clarity, and I would include grammatical clarity (punctuation, spelling, sentence structure) as one of those elements.

Meanwhile, if you are applying for a job at iFixit or Dozuki, you better brush up on your spelling and punctuation!