Imitation is the Greatest Form of Flattery

Imitation is the Greatest Form of Flattery

One reason I enjoy receiving complimentary copies of the magazine put out by our German counterpart association, ZVEI, is that it’s always amusing to see what new English expressions appear.  The May 15 issue, for example, features titles with “Compliance-Management”, “Smart Metering”, “Roadshow”, “Highlight”, “Automation”, and “Life Needs Power” among others, as well as the inevitable favorite “Girls are meeting companies”. 


For the record, as someone who has spent a little time in Deutschland and is married to a German, I’m not trying to be monolinguistically arrogant, and for that matter neither is NEMA with our website pages in Spanish, Portugeuse and Chinese — plus staffers and a former President from around the world.  Indeed, it really is helpful to everyone – not just those of us based in the U.S. – that so many of our foreign counterparts have web sites with both native-language and English sections.


If nothing else, this provides us a chance to think about how we might want to imitate them.  That “Girls/companies” article, for example, is part of a ZVEI program to get more students, especially young women, studying electrical engineering.  Yes, the U.S. is perhaps a bit more accustomed to filling scientific staffing gaps with imports, for lack of a better description, but maybe we need to focus a little more on fostering domestic talent as well.  Danke schoen. 

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