An ambiguous ambition

More often than not, the provincial government's service plans feature ambiguous rather than ambitious goals and performance measures. But would any public office holder actually admit that? Well, in an email to stakeholders, Industry Training Authority chief executive officer Kevin Evans wrote his agency's plan provides "a crisp picture of the ITA's priorities for the coming year as established by the ITA's Board of Directors. It sets ambiguous (sic) goals by which our success over the coming year will be judged." Of course, we're sure he actually meant to write ambitious. But his spell checker seems to have gotten the better of him! The following is a complete copy of that email.

Subject: Industry Training Authority's 2010 - 2013 Service Plan

Good Morning,

I am pleased to let you know that the Industry Training Authority's 2010/11 - 2012/13 Service Plan was released last week alongside the provincial budget. The plan provides you with a crisp picture of the ITA's priorities for the coming year as established by the ITA's Board of Directors. It sets ambiguous goals by which our success over the coming year will be judged.

I encourage you to review the ITA Service Plan, which can be found on our website at http://www.itabc.ca/Page61.aspx

Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or concerns.

Regards,
Kevin Evans
CEO

1 Comment

Hi Sean,

It was a bizarre and regrettable error on our part, to be sure... but here's a sampling of some of the response to our hurried correction. It's encouraging to see that in this all-too-serious world some are able to keep oddities like this in perspective.

* I love your typo, and I am pleased to see that the ITA is capable of the sort of error I routinely make. But it is not as bad as an error at BCIT some years ago that went to press with the Director of Public Relations being identified as the Director of Pubic Relations.

* You must be mortified, but not to worry - this is what separates us from machines.

* Still "ambiguous goals" is pretty good. - Thanks for the correction. No need to apologize.

* Thanks but we are not focused on spelling. Good work thank you

* That's OK, I like to set ambiguous goals too.

* Here's a chuckle for you - as a little consolation that it happens to all of us: I was born in Germany and English is my second language. When I started teaching computer courses at Okanagan College and created my first exam I wasn't sure if I had made it too difficult. So I joked upon handing out the exam, "I guess I know that I made it too difficult when I see sweat drops appear on your foreskins".

Of course, I meant "forehead". The exam started 15 minutes late.

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