|Course Title||Communication Skills|
|Last date of submission||15th October, 2019 (For July 2019 Session)
15th April, 2020 (For January 2020 Session)
This assignment has six questions. Answer all questions. Please go through the guidelines regarding assignments given in the Programme Guide for the format of presentation.
Q1. Read the passage carefully and answer the questions given below. This passage is taken from the Commencement address delivered by late Steve Jobs, who was CEO of Apple Computer
When I was 17, I read a quote that went something like: “If you live each day as if it was your last, someday you’ll most certainly be right.” It made an impression on me, and since then, for the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?” And whenever the answer has been “No” for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.
Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure – these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.
About a year ago I was diagnosed with cancer. I had a scan at 7:30 in the morning, and it clearly showed a tumor on my pancreas. I didn’t even know what a pancreas was. The doctors told me this was almost certainly a type of cancer that is incurable, and that I should expect to live no longer than three to six months. My doctor advised me to go home and get my affairs in order, which is doctor’s code for prepare to die. It means to try to tell your kids everything you thought you’d have the next 10 years to tell them in just a few months. It means to make sure everything is buttoned up so that it will be as easy as possible for your family. It means to say your goodbyes.
I lived with that diagnosis all day. Later that evening I had a biopsy, where they stuck an endoscope down my throat, through my stomach and into my intestines, put a needle into my pancreas and got a few cells from the tumor. I was sedated, but my wife, who was there, told me that when they viewed the cells under a microscope the doctors started crying because it turned out to be a very rare form of pancreatic cancer that is curable with surgery. I had the surgery and I’m fine now.
This was the closest I’ve been to facing death, and I hope it’s the closest I get for a few more decades. Having lived through it, I can now say this to you with a bit more certainty than when death was a useful but purely intellectual concept:
No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be, because Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life’s change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new. Right now the new is you, but someday not too long from now, you will gradually become the old and be cleared away. Sorry to be so dramatic, but it is quite true.
Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.
When I was young, there was an amazing publication called The Whole Earth Catalog, which was one of the bibles of my generation. It was created by a fellow named Stewart Brand not far from here in Menlo Park, and he brought it to life with his poetic touch. This was in the late 1960’s, before personal computers and desktop publishing, so it was all made with typewriters, scissors, and polaroid cameras. It was sort of like Google in paperback form, 35 years before Google came along: it was idealistic, and overflowing with neat tools and great notions.
Stewart and his team put out several issues of The Whole Earth Catalog, and then when it had run its course, they put out a final issue. It was the mid-1970s, and I was your age. On the back cover of their final issue was a photograph of an early morning country road, the kind you might find yourself hitchhiking on if you were so adventurous. Beneath it were the words: “Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.” It was their farewell message as they signed off. Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish. And I have always wished that for myself. And now, as you graduate to begin anew, I wish that for you.
Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.
Thank you all very much.
Now answer the following questions:
i Why did Steve Jobs feel “Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool that I’ve encountered to help me make the big choices in life”? Discuss in the light of the passage. (2)
ii What did the doctor mean when he told Steve Jobs to “get my affairs in order”? (2)
iii Why did the author feel that Death is the best invention of Life according to the passage? (2)
iv The author says “don’t waste it living someone else’s life”. What/who does ‘it’ refer to? How do we lead someone’s life? (2)
v What according to you did the author mean when he told the young graduates “Stay Hungry. Stay foolish.” (2)
vi Find the meanings of the following words/phrases from the passage and use them in sentences of your own. (10)
i Make/made an impression
iii Fear of embarrassment
iv Fall away
v Buttoned up
ix Drown out
Q2. Complete the following company profile with either the present perfect or past simple tense of the verbs in brackets: (10) William Colgate………….(found) the Colgate Company in 1806 as a starch, soap and candle business in New York City. For the first one hundred years, the company………….(do) all its business in the United States. However, in the early 1900s, the company………….(begin) an aggressive expansion programme that ………….((lead) to the establishment of Colgate operations in countries throughout Europe, Latin America and the Far East. Recently it………….(set up) operations in Turkey, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Eastern Europe and China. Colgate-Palmolive ………….(become) a truly global consumer products company, worth $6.6 billion and selling in more than 160 countries.
Colgate-Palmolive’s five main sectors of business are: Oral Care, Body Care, Household Surface Care, Fabric Care and Pet Nutrition and Health Care. In the area of Oral Care, Colgate-Palmolive is the world leader in toothpaste. Since 1980, the company …………….(increase) its share of this market by more than 12% to over 40% today. Oral care revenues ……………..(grow) significantly in recent years and in 1991, they …………..(exceed) $1.3 billion. As a result of the company’s heavy investment in research and technology, it…………………(develop) many successful toothpaste, rinses and toothbrushes.
Q3. You recently moved to a new city on a job transfer. Write an email to your friend informing him of this move. In your email: (20)
i Describe the new city ii Explain how life in this city is different compared to the previous city iii Invite your friend and family to visit you in the new city iv Say what your new job profile is.
Q4. Write a dialogue, in about 20 turns, between two friends discussing what they would like to do in their lives after completing their education. (20)
Q5. Select a company you would like to work for and a position you would like to have within that company. Write an application letter in which you explain your qualifications and request an interview. (You should assume that you have graduated, or that you will graduate soon.) Send your CV along with the cover letter. (10+10=20)
Q6. Fill up the gaps with a suitable word from the choices in the brackets: (10)
i The secretary had completely forgotten that they had run out of …………………. (stationery/stationary)
ii The ………………… meeting was scheduled to begin at 11:30. (council/counsel)
iii As soon as the director arrived, Seema ………………… him of the situation. (appraised/apprised)
iv After the presentation, there was a lot of …………………about the project among the team members. (persuasion/discussion)
v The manager’s comments …………………that he was surprised by the success of our project. (implied/inferred)
vi She had not considered the side …………………of such strong medication.
(affects/effects) vii There was visible tension …………………Anant and his manager.
(between/among) viii After the showdown with his manager, Anant spent the weekend in tension,
dreading his ………………… dismissal. (eminent/imminent) ix Thankfully, there was no …………………discussion of the showdown on Friday.
(farther/further) x She ………………… from the Professor’s expression, that he was pleased with her paper. (inferred/implied)