This blog reflects on life at work at comments on the latest news that shapes my 9-5 working day in a Corporate Communications consultancy.

About Me

I am a born and bred South African who has always loved to read and write. As a child my mother used to read to me and my siblings, from classics like the “Lord of the Rings” but later also from her own stories. She would write children’s stories and then use us as her test audience, but I loved to hear what she had written long after my siblings had tired of it. So I grew up in an environment of reading and writing, which inspired my love of these things. I hope to write a great book some day, and have learnt first hand the determination and will that it takes. My love of English inspired me to continue my study of it at university. I majored in Law and English in a BA degree at UCT where I found that I took to English much more than law. I enjoyed learning about South Africa’s history and the development of our liberal Constitution, which increasingly made me committed to the hope this country has for the future. Ideally, I’d like to find myself in a job where I am able to write; that allows a good mix of time spent with people and being able to work on my own.

Wednesday, 18 July 2007

Learning the corporate lingo

Early on in one of our World of Work sessions, Lesley joked that she'd felt slightly panicked when she heard her supervisor say that she would be finished her PhD soon. This was until she realised that in academic speak, soon meant three years.

After years getting to grips with 'academic speak', I'm having to learn a new corporate lingo. On Monday I was working on a review of annual reports for a booklet that is compiled by Brunswick's design partners in London. I had to look at some annual reports and comment on a few things that stood out about them. This was challenging for two reasons: I'm not all that familiar with annual reports (but this helped me to learn); and I'm not a practised hand in 'corporate speak' yet. Carol rewrote some of the things I'd written so that they sounded more polished. It's another stepping stone in learning to be part of the world of work and make the adjustment from university life.

I'm also slowly getting to grips with some financial terms. At the Transnet results, I heard the word EBITDA - and thought it sounded like Greek. I accosted my Dad for some explanations and now I know it's actually an acronym, standing for: Earnings before tax, interests, debt and amortisation (this last one is an accounting term which basically means depreciation of assets).

I feel like I'm starting to get the hang of things.... I may even write a dictionary for dummies of financial terms one of these days - anyone like to join me?

1 comment:

Ijeoma Uche-Okeke said...

Thank you for sharing Susan, it is really great to see how much progress you are making from when you started to this point. Dictionary for dummies....I'll be one of those lining up to grab a copy.