I’m always torn whenever I step inside my English for the Professions class and talk about the “default” mindset for fresh graduates and their initial practice of profession. While the class should only deal with business communication, I can’t seem to just disregard the fact that part of any decent course on the topic should deal with the real-world situations that potential graduates will be dealing with.
I hate the default mindset. The default mindset being: Study hard. Get a decent job. Work hard. Reading too much Bob Kiyosaki, the HBR blog, Dan Pink, and tech revolutionaries’ biographies (Jobs, Gates, Page and Brin, etc…) made me challenge what I’ve been brought up to believe in.
My parents both had that mindset and they never really reached success beyond a rags to middle class story. I still believe that putting me through school (through a couple private schools and then the national university) was their greatest achievement. Too bad they’re not around anymore to enjoy it.
Die hard. That’s one probable outcome to the default mindset. Work stress surely kills and it’s just one of the realities of actually working in many of today’s work environments.
The alternative is definitely one for society’s maverick (at least, for now) – entrepreneurship. I’m convinced that being your own boss is the better way to go. Unfortunately, this country isn’t too supportive of entrepreneurs with all the red tape. Even banks consider small business as too risky to help fund.
So why aren’t we teaching business communication with along the alternative mindset? I don’t know. I have yet to encounter any colleague of mine go beyond the default. Personally, I have my reservations since I have yet to fully immerse myself in entrepreneurship. My greatest strength in teaching the course is that my other work exposes me to industry – beyond the pretty ivory towers many academicians are in.
But that has got to change. We need more captains of industry. Not desk monkeys, intellectual prostitutes, and new-age slaves.