Friday, March 04, 2005

Building Vocabulary

Communication plays a major role in professional life. If you want to get a good job or want to raise in your career, then you need to communicate effectively and efficiently. To improve your communication, a lot of home work needs to be done. This post is about the various facets of improving your vocabulary so that your communication clarity increases.

There are various ways to build your vocabulary, the following is the one that I formulated and followed. Thus I did practise before preaching. The ideas proposed over here are my own and I do not hold responsibility if it doesn't work for you.

1. Learn new words
The best deal is to go through dictionary or GRE booklet and learn few words everyday. There are multiple software tools (Vocabulary builder, hangman) available to help you learn words by word play. Keep learning say 10 words per day. Keep revising so that you could remember.

Learning new words means understanding its meaning and its usages. Some words do even have primary meaning and secondary meaning which differs based on the context used.

You can also use "Word Power Made Easy by Noram Lewis". It is an excellent book that explains you the etymology of words. By practising this book, you can easily identify the roots of the words. Thus for an unknown word, you can do a educated guess of its meaning by the decomposition technique.

For instance...
Caligraphy - Kallos (Greek - beauty) + Graphos (Greek - writing)
Thus it means beautiful writing or artistic writing
Cacography - Kakos (Greek - bad) + Graphos (Greek - writing)
Thus meaning - bad handwriting.

2. Usage of words
Read news papers, journals, blogs, novels, etc to see how the words are used in different contexts. By this exercise you can refresh the words.
For instance, when you read a thriller novel you can see the usage of concur

"Do you concur with me?"

Concur means agree.

Thus keep on improvising on what you had learnt in the step 1.

3. Try using it
With step 2, you are just mid-way. Mind, communication is two way response. So it is not sufficient that you understand what is conversed, you should reply back in the same fluency. To get this talent imbibed, start using the words.

The way to go is to write travel-logs, diary or blogs of your interest with emphasis on using new words. This way you will put a lot of learnt words to real use and you get used to it. Finally it becomes a habit and you become an effective communicator.

One of the primary reason for me to blog is to improve my communication.

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