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December 02, 2008

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Jason Monastra

Now that is one of the more interesting posts I have read in sometime. For the most part, I keep away from the pure academics as I see them as being limited, not wide minded as you offer. Let me clarify here.

You bring a very strong point to the surface. Academics tend to have the opportunity to review issues for months on end without a component of time being a factor. However, that exact lack of pressure, is what causes most of them to see things in the "vacuum" or the "bubble" which is often referred to academics that see things without the pressures of the outside world. The pressures, the time constraints, the anxieties of what effects people's decisions are exactly what make them problems - therefore requiring solutions that take those factors into account.

I tend to think professionals that have experience in both make for the best teachers, as they can take the lessons learned in the classroom - apply them in the office, grow with both and then teach according to the wisdom gathered.

Just my opinion.....

Rachel - I Hate HR

I think mistakes are more accepted in the business world. If we do something wrong we just say "oops," apologize and send out a new copy. There is pressure to do it right but your being does not depend on everything being done perfectly.

Rachel - I Hate HR

I think mistakes are more accepted in the business world. If we do something wrong we just say "oops," apologize and send out a new copy. There is pressure to do it right but your being does not depend on everything being done perfectly.

Jackie Cameron

This is really interesting Peggy. I used to work with lawyers and at that time a survey showed that they were amongst the gloomiest employees - because their job is to nit pick and look for fault in every case! So I see your point with academics. I am currently working on a number of projects with a university here in Edinburgh ( the one I studied at too incidentally). They have a model where they bring in associates from the outside world for specific collaborations. This I think is a deliberate step to appeal to a wider student market but it has the added advantage of inviting questions about the current way they do things - which can only be a good thing surely!

Lonely Dissertator

I have the opposite experience. In Corporate Asia, it's dog-eat-dog (and then there are the nicer people in HR!). Here in Academia, faculty generally care about student progress, etc.

In terms of critical thinking, surely there is an abundance of it in academia, and less of it in the corporate world.

In some ways, having heard how passionately you argue about things, I am surprised that you find arguing to be difficult. Perhaps it is argumentation that is detailed and scientific (and long-drawn out) rather than the quick opinion-oriented argumentation that does not appeal to you right now?

I know that the key shift for me from corporate- to academic-mindset has been that long, detailed, scientifically-rigorous thinking versus the quick opinion-oriented "throw a few charts on the powerpoint" style of convincing folks.

But let me not come across to you as yet another discouraging, negatively-oriented academic voice. Keep processing, and keep on chugging. Don't quit. If you can, shift from being "practical" to being "scientific/philosophical" for a little while, and you'll be done before you know it. Hey, you might even have some good things to say about academia! ;-)

--------Career Encourager says...

Hi JB -

Thanks for reading and for commenting. I always appreciate encouragement from you. I'd like to respond to three things from your comment:

First, you mention having heard me passionately argue about things. This is true. And it's one reason why I am open to your feedback - because I know you have seen, and heard me and have considered who I am. In other words, I feel confident that you respect me as a person. This has been lacking in some of the feedback I have received in academia (granted - that occurs in the business world too).

Second, you say "Perhaps it is argumentation that is detailed and scientific (and long-drawn out) rather than the quick opinion-oriented argumentation that does not appeal to you right now?" Ahhh - you've got me here. This is good food for thought. My initial response is that I think I am up-front about what I am thinking and what my tentiative conclusions are, and that I lay them out there for consideration and discourse. Then, if I find I am wrong, I am willing to change. Sometimes I get the sense in that in academia people are more reluctant to say what they really think and hide behind supposed "scientific discourse" that they have constructed to prop up an opinion they already hold. For me, this can create distrust.

Finally, you bring out an interesting point when you reference the "dog eat dog" climate of business in Corporate Asia - as with many issues in life, it is important that we understand that our opinions are shaped by our prior experiences. You are coming from Corporate Asia so you see the differences in academia from that perspective. I am coming from a backgorund of companies that have done a good job of representing what is good about "compassionate capitalism" so I evlauate my time in academia through that lens.

Thanks for the feedback and the encouragement. You know I count on you as one of the voices of reason in the hallowed halls of academia!

Peggy

Lonely Dissertator

RYC (regarding your comment): Wow, "compassionate capitalism" sounds absolutely amazing. I will be picking your brain when I return to "redeem" Corporate Asia!

As for those who hide behind supposed scientific discourse as opposed to being more upfront, I guess that's the arena or language of argumentation in academic circles. "Learn the talk (and writing) or perish from the scholarly community" is what I've learned. I think I've gotten a good handle on figuring out the more closely-held opinions of scholars [read: primal emotional responses] that fuel their florid rhetoric. It took a while though! My next skill is to figure out how to translate words such as "our contrasting epistemologies" to words like "I just really hate your guts" in such a way that we can build a harmonious bridge between the ivory tower and the trading floor. (Hmm... I'm in a wry mood today!)

In any case, I'm glad I can be a reasonable voice in your academic experience. *bow*

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I think mistakes are more accepted in the business world. If we do something wrong we just say "oops," apologize and send out a new copy. There is pressure to do it right but your being does not depend on everything being done perfectly

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