After receiving her doctorate in business administration, Joan was faced with the dilemma of joining a Fortune 100 company as its chief operating officer or teaching at an Ivy League university.
The problem with the sentence above stems from the use of dilemma. A dilemma is a choice between two unappealing alternatives, such as the choice of starving in the wilderness or eating live grubs (or even eating dead grubs for that matter).
Most people would agree that being a COO or a university professor are attractive opportunities. Therefore, Joan is faced not with a dilemma, but merely a choice.
It’s important to remember that dilemma involves a choice. (The Latin prefix di means two, twice, or double.) So, if your situation does not involve a choice, try using predicament, problem, plight, or difficulty.
Check out more writing tips below…
Search Tips by Topic
- Capitalization: Eponyms
- Comma – Restrictive/Nonrestrictive
- Compare to/with
- Could care less
- Daylight saving time
- Due to
- Every Day/Everyday
- Guess what/I wonder
- Hear hear
- Home/Hone in on
- I wonder/Guess what
Professional Style Monthly Subscription
Sign up to get Professional Style delivered straight to your inbox every month. It’s FREE, and you can’t beat FREE!