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When Does Your Accent Get in the Way of Your Professional Success?

h“Can you get rid of my accent?” That is often the first thing that someone says to me when they call for information.  I always ask, “Why do you want to get rid of your accent?”

In my opinion, unless you are an actor preparing for a role with or without a specific accent, there is no reason to erase one’s accent completely. One’s accent is a vital part of their self-image, reflecting their heritage and culture. It is a reflection of who they are. We all have accents.  What is important is that one’s accent or the way they speak does not interfere with the delivery of their message.

In business, speaking with clarity and confidence is essential to business success.  If someone is frequently asked to repeat what they just said they need to make improvements in their communication.  A particularly heavy accent can make speech difficult to understand and create communication gaps that detract from the message.

When I founded my business in 2009, I observed many of my non-native English-speaking clients working within a field of native English speakers. Since that time, business demographics have changed. Every industry now has a melting pot of individuals from all over the globe speaking Standard American English with varying accents. On one conference call you may have someone from India, Japan, Germany, China and the Ukraine all trying to be understood while speaking English.

We often hear from our clients that their confidence is affected when people ask them to repeat what was said or the listener looks confused. An accent-reduction and modification program is designed to provide essential tools that will not only build clarity, confidence and credibility, but also will truly transform communication skills into those of a business leader. Accent reduction and modification training will not affect just your clarity and confidence, but your career as well.

One issue that can be particularly difficult with a heavy accent is telephone communication. Speaking on the telephone can be tricky because you lose all of the visual cues that you normally have in conversation. Clear, crisp speech will help you get your message across effectively and avoid misunderstandings. Watch the video below for tips on communicating effectively on the phone.


Do you think there is room for improvement with your accent?

I am available for a free telephone consultation to discuss how we can transform your communication skills into an effective professional tool. Please use the form on the right to send me your details and I will be happy to get in touch.

I would also like you to have a look at my “Tips to Excel on the Telephone For Non-Native English Speakers”, so I’ll send a pdf document directly to your e-mail – just a few ideas which I think you ‘ll love.



About Jayne Latz, Founder and President of Corporate Speech Solutions, LLC:

HeadshotJayne Latz founded Corporate Speech Solutions (CSS) in 2006.  CSS is comprised of a team of corporate speech-language pathologists uniquely qualified to deliver the training to transform business professionals into strong, confident and dynamic speakers. The goal is for each individual to walk away with the ability to “Communicate with Greater Clarity, Confidence and Credibility.” Jayne Latz was recently featured in the Wall Street Journal and appeared on “The Today Show.