We are delighted to be kicking off the new year with the release of a new eBook, in which our founder Emma Serlin shares her top 5 tools for making sure your accent doesn’t get in the way of your effective communication.
Many non-native English speakers living in the UK find themselves caught in an annoying paradox. On the one hand, they are fluent in English and, to a great extent, see England as their home. On the other, having an accent means that often people’s first response will be to ask them where they are from. It’s a frustrating thing, to feel judged by one’s accent before one has even started to share their ideas. And the frustrations don’t stop there. it can lead to far more wearying daily communication challenges; from blank looks because of an incorrect pronunciation, through to having to avoid a certain word because
you don’t know how to say it, or not getting a laugh on the punchline of a joke because the intonation is wrong, or even feeling just slightly out of it at work socials, or preferring to write emails instead of pick up the phone - the list goes on. But by the same note, accents are wonderful and important. They hold a major part of our identity. They contain our culture and our heritage, and it’s important and totally fundamental to hold onto that.
So what is the solution? Well, the great news is that it is possible to work on one’s accent; to take the edges off, avoid misunderstandings and improve clarity and confidence - and there is no need to get rid of this vital part of your identity in the process! A lot of people feel since they have lived in the UK for so long and still have an accent maybe it is impossible to change. Not true! It is very possible. There are small and incremental changes you can make with individual sounds (which is a bit like going to the gym as you retrain your brain to adopt new neural networks) and bigger broader changes with an understanding of how the language actually works. These we call quick wins:
things you can do, starting from today, that will instantly improve clarity when you speak, and also give you a sense of confidence about how to use the language to make it work for you. So in this eBook, you will find five top tools to help you clear up those misunderstandings and feel more ownership over the language when you speak it, so that you can share your ideas without interference.