Employers are checking applicants’ colons: how to clean up your grammar.

You know you’ll be judged on your grammar. Did you know that it might be a future employer or a boss doing the judging, and it could be holding you back?

I believe in spiracles

When I was sitting in the classroom at school, I was always asking, “When are we EVER going to need this stuff in the real world?!” And I was arguably right about a lot of it.

I don’t think I need an in depth knowledge of an insect’s respiratory system to help me through the working day. And, if I did, I might not remember exactly what a spiracle does anyway.

Grammar, however, is something worth remembering. We live in an age when there are many different channels of communication, and most involve writing.

It turns out, employers care how well you write.

Writing is the first impression

Before you’re standing in front of your future employer, your writing is all they have to judge you.

If you’re applying for a job, a covering letter with poor grammar is like turning up to an interview with your shirt tucked into your pants and mustard down your face. Or with mustard down your shirt and your face tucked into your pants.

Kyle Wiens, founder of iFixit and Dozuki, gives all his applicants a mandatory grammar test. His theory is that your quality of grammar directly represents your quality of thinking.

A recent article in the Telegraph said that 50% of job applications are now rejected on the strength of their spelling and grammar.

So, how can you make sure that your written self comes across as intelligent, charming and as employable as I’m sure you are in person?

It’s probably been a few years since you learnt grammar at school. But Lynn Truss’ book is good. And the American Classic, “The Elements of Style” by Strunk and White is a classic for a reason.

We run a number of writing courses, which aren’t all about grammar but they are certainly all about thinking. And grammar plays a part. If you’re interested in making a better first impression, email Chris.