Posts Tagged ‘Business’

Avoiding Sexism, Perhaps Excessive in Religion

May 3rd, 2014 No comments

Avoiding being labeled as “sexist” is very important these days.  The current emphasis on bias-free language has created difficulties for today’s writers.  Some traditional uses of the English language that have long been the cornerstones of good writing are no longer acceptable: for example, using “he,” “him,” and “his” to refer to a male or a female (if the finder returns my watch, he will receive a reward).  Because these pronouns are masculine-specific, they are now regarded as sexist.        


Good writers will find ways to achieve gender-neutral language, but it may take some thought. There are gender-neutral words that were used in the past, some as long ago as the 1700s, that in later years we stopped using: for example, Read more…

Secretary, Administrative Assistant, or Administrative Professional?

May 3rd, 2014 1 comment

Not long ago I stopped by the office of a local school administrator.  She was not in her office, but her new secretary—on the job four days—was.  We talked a few minutes—you know, small talk—and then I asked if she had a card.  Having the direct telephone number and e-mail of a person’s secretary always makes it easier than going through the various voice messages and button-pushing so often required.  She replied, “Oh, Dr. Bradshaw, I am only a secretary.  I don’t have a card.  Being a secretary I will never have a card.”


Through the years, I have met other secretaries who do not have their own cards, but this was the first time I had been given that explanation for not having one.  What she said really bothered me—implying that being “only a secretary” she was not important enough to have a card.  I decided it was time for her to know the historical significance of being a secretary—that being a “secretary” was an honor, not something to apologize for.  So I said, “Let me tell you what being a secretary really means.”  And this is what I told her.  Read more…