The Waiting Room

This could take a while...

Monday, October 20, 2008

Reality Check

Posted by Seeking Solace |

I received a response from the student who wrote the poorly written email. It was just as bad as the first. I was rather subtle with my request, so as not to cause any hurt feelings. So much for being politely professional. I truly believe, as Rented Life stated in the comments, that this student, like so many others, does not know how to communicate in any other way.

It just really grinds my gears that there is this lack of professionalism and etiquette. Granted, no one is "taught" these things, but in my day, such skills came under the heading of "home training."

I had a professor in college who taught a course in etiquette and professionalism for all education majors. It was a one credit course. Students had to attend class in business attire and were taught professional skills and etiquette like how to properly correspond with a supervisor, how to shake another person's hand, how to present oneself during an interview, etc. Sadly, these are skills that have all but disappeared.

I am thinking about doing something about this in class. Perhaps presenting a component on what it means to be a professional. I could provide students with an assignment that is filled with many of the mistakes that drive me crazy. Maybe they need to see the world views they way they present themselves.


Inside the Philosophy Factory said...

I was thinking about you and your student when I was revising the short e-mail I sent to my dissertation supervisor... I wanted to be clear, friendly, polite and professional all at the same time. I also didn't want to waste his time by making him interpret what I was saying.

RageyOne said...

Your idea doesn't sound half-bad. Your students need to realize that non-professionalism in the workplace will not be tolerated. There is a standard that should be adhered to and what better place to learn it than in college. It may be a rude awakening for some, but much needed.

Albatross said...

I agree that dealing with it in class is a great idea.
The only professional skills training I got in my college courses was from my dance minor in how to audition. We have a class in my grad program, however the professor shows up at least 15 minutes late, doesn't remember what assignments she gives, and just generally teaches what not to do by example.