Learning new languages

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Picture this: You are a young Italian boy living in a small mountain village against the green slopes of Sicily. You’re 20. You go to school and watch TV. One day you open the shutters of your bedroom window and you think: “Mi piacerebbe davvero allontanarsi.” You know you want to be a part of the big world. It’s out there in the distance. You are aware of that. You can see that world on your TV screen every day. It’s fast, beautiful, trendy. It looks like so much more vivid than your own dusty town.

There’s only one problem. The language of the big world is English but apart from your high school teacher .. no one in your town speaks English. So – You decide to learn it all by yourself.

You’ll have to find ways to learn English. You watch more TV, you find courses online and you install ‘speech’ on your computer.

After 2 years of intense self study you’ll speak English like no other in your village or even in a range of a few kilometers.

You buy a ticket and you end up in Amsterdam … it’s your dream come true. But also a complete emotional crash. You do not speak the language you have tried to learn so hard. People have a hard time to understand you. They even ask you on what kind of computer you learned your sentences.

It’s exactly that what is happening in the Social Media and Marketing area. People that call themselves professionals really want to learn the language of the country that’s only comes to you through a screen. They follow, repeat, rehearse, study. But honestly: you’ll never get it unless you’re really a part of it.

To understand the language of the new world, you can not simply repeat other peoples successes. You have to feel to understand. You have to question the ‘why’ and not the ‘how’. You have to get the difference between ‘post’ and ‘send’.

Fellow professionals: question!

Marco

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