Trident Contract Management Blog


Biting the Binary Tongue

Posted on by Temple Sutfin

MP900262237 (1)“Temple, why not write a blog for Trident?” They said.

“Anything in particular you would like me to write about?” I asked. “Whatever you would like.” They replied.

Where do I start? Naturally, when a solution eludes me, I turn to the foremost authority on the universe and its mysterious workings. Yep, I “Googled” it. It turns out that many seasoned authors like to tell aspiring authors to “write what you know!”

Awesome! Binary, bits, bytes, and nibbles (No … really … nibble: a collection of four bits). My inner geek squealed like a four year old girl on Christmas morning. I immediately sat down and wrote a very long-winded diatribe on the intricacies of recursive foreign keys and referential integrity constraints in a relational database. With a flourish of great pride and beaming accomplishment, I showed the work of art to my husband to proofread.

He fell asleep. It was 8 in the morning and he’d had two cups of coffee. Could my literary debut really be so boring? Was there “an English translation to my ‘gobbledygook’” as he put it? And then it occurred to me that he was from the planet Neptune and that I was really just dreaming. It was just like my mama always said, “To iterate is human, to recurse divine.” Ok, so that was L. Peter Deutsch, but come on – when am I ever going to get to bring that one out in idle conversation?

Still, there is something to be said for bridging that communication gap between an unnecessary technical explanation and just using layman’s terms. Just because you can say it, doesn’t mean you should. Many times over I face this issue with life in general.

My husband: “Hand me that two-eighteenths dual posi-algowrench lockometer.” (Yes, that is what it sounds like inside my head!)

Me: “You mean this silver thing with the blue loopy doo-dad at the end?”

Needless to say, when I came to work here at Trident Contract Management, I was completely blown away by the communication style amongst the staff. It doesn’t matter if you are in sales, development, or accounting. You could be an analyst or a consultant. The natural flowing language style is not threatening, or overbearing. It’s all about efficiency levels and respect. There is no need to under-simplify or over-techni-cate (my new word for the week). They are all about getting it right.

But every now and then I find myself biting the binary tongue and rethinking a sentence, but it’s a learning process and it takes time. Or, failing that, I might just “reverse the polarity of the neutron flow.” I don’t know yet. It’s up in the air.

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