Risk of Cultural Misunderstanding.

First an apology to George Dinwiddie for misunderstanding his recent post and for misspelling his name.

My latest post was a major fail. I had read George Dinwiddie’s post and assumed that George was calling out Yogi Berra for complaining about the Agile20xx conferences. I had assumed that because I did not know who Yogi Berra was that he was someone who had complained about the conference. I did not realise that Yogi Berra is a famous baseball player. A simple google search would have revealed the truth.

Changing Yogi from a normal person to a famous sports star totally changes the tone of George’s post.

So the risk this incident has reminded me of is that I don’t understand something even when I think I do. How often do we skip over some of the details in an article when those details may totally change the context and or tone. I should make sure I know what I read and check anything I do not know, otherwise there is the risk the bits I do not know will trip me up.

I am reminded of the quote by George Bernard Shaw* that the English and Americans are “Two peoples separated by a common language”

*GBS – English playwright who wrote Pygmalion and funded a phonetic alphabet. A major fan of accents and dialects who could tell which town or even street a person was from based on their accent.

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About theitriskmanager

A IT programme manager specialising in delivering trading and risk management systems in Investment Banks. I achieve this by focusing on risk rather than cost. A focus on costs can lead to increased costs. View all posts by theitriskmanager

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