Reconnaissance thou art sneaky!

Reconnaissance…ooh, what a word! Not your every day run of the mill word now is it? Fascinating stuff!This terms was originally used in the military environment. The military definition for it is to, in essence, spy on your enemy and their territory thereof by gathering information about  them to use at a later stage for whatever purpose, be it to attack enemy terrain or for other reasons.Think of it as gathering information for the competitor to use for yourself at a later stage for some purpose only you know. In a more generic context , reconnaissance means to check or suss something out before taking any form of action. I am more interested in the non-military definition for this term and this is what will be explored further.

A typical situation in which the word ‘Reconnaissance’ is fitting is when an employer does what is called ‘reconnoitering’ to find out information about a potential employee. The information gathered can either land you the job, or unfortunately not. Some would say that the act of reconnoitering in this regard is sneaky or a tad unorthodox. Is it though? Do potential employers have a right to find out a bit of information about an employee they are looking into adding into their employ? I will leave that entirely up to you to speculate and mull over.

We actually all do our little bit of reconnoitering in our everyday lives. Think of when you have a crush on someone and you know that your friend knows your crush. What do you do? You of course gather as much information as you can from your poor unsuspecting friend. Or if your friend knows, you reel them in so that they are also in your loop of reconnoitering so that you know a little bit more about your crush before you sum up the courage to talk to them or make small talk.  Sneaky, isn’t it? Oh quite!

It is quite interesting how our daily lives are filled with acts of reconnoitering. It is quite fascinating to put such a ‘gigantic’ word to our acts of finding out information about potential endeavours. Looking for a hotel to stay at for a holiday this festive season? By all means go and suss it out. By all means do the reconnaissance now will you?!

Reconnaissance, reconnoitering, reconnaissance…letting these words stick. Happy reconnaissance folks!

By Sakhile Mogale

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