Express To Excel (My Column in Sakal newspaper)

By Dhiraj Singh

One of the many Hindi words for a human individual is ‘vyakti’ which come from the root word ‘vyakt’ or the act of expressing thoughts, ideas, feelings in words. This word is key in understanding our basic human need to express ourselves. Scientifically speaking, this ability to express—sometimes complex and abstract—thoughts into language is what differentiates us humans from the vast variety of animals on the planet.

It is our ability to express and communicate our feelings through complex sounds (or spoken language) that has made us the most advanced species since the big bang. Communication is the most important aspect of our lives especially as newer technological breakthroughs enable faster, better and more evolved ways of expressing ourselves.

A natural question in curious young minds would then be: if communication is in our DNA why do we need to learn it? The problem in our digitally-enabled world is that the means of communication have become so advanced that one needs to master the basic requirements in order to stand out among the millions around us. This is especially true in India where a population of 1.3 billion is trying to be heard over each other. We are today in the midst of a ‘Communication Explosion’ where one has to learn and adapt by saying exactly the things that will improve our chances of being heard and respected.

While this rule is applicable to everyone who is seeking to enter the job market in the coming years it is especially true for those students who are looking to excel in the fields of media, filmmaking, journalism, marketing, advertising, public relations and so on.

Remember, the game is all about learning how to stand out in an ocean where every other person of your generation has the tools of social media literally on their fingertips. The key however is to remember that abundance of something doesn’t translate into excellence. For example just because there are cameras everywhere (in phones and as stand-alone devices) everyone doesn’t become a great photographer. The art and science of photography has to be learned because while everyone has a pair of eyes to see, capturing an image that has a ‘wow effect’ can only come through learning. The same is true for the art and science of communication.

More about that in my next column, keep watching this space!!

Dhiraj Singh is a well-known journalist, author, artist and TV personality whose latest novel ‘MASTER O’ is a sci-fi political thriller. He is currently Director, School of Media & Communication & The Idea Lab, MIT-World Peace University, Pune


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