Speaking English in a professional way doesn’t come easily, but sometimes it is necessary. If you work in an international city like Amsterdam or for an international company and your mother tongue is Dutch or another language, presenting in English can be a huge challenge. How about your professionalism and self confidence in English, in front of an audience?
English in an international context
For example, today my tech handyman Martijn – the rock in my online branding – came by because of a printer problem that was solved spontaneously the moment he walked in. This man has a special gift. Because it was such a beautiful day, he decided to take it easy, which invariably leads us to interesting conversations about the most diverse topics. Martijn told me that he had attended an international congress on fintech with various speakers. The topics were very interesting, but the presentations left a lot to be desired. The official language at the conference was English and the presentations were in English – a language that mostly everyone speaks to a greater or lesser extent. With an emphasis on ‘lesser,’ as it turned out.
Struggling with English accents
One of the speakers was an international who spoke an English that was a bit difficult to understand. Whenever he got stuck, he ‘forgot’ to speak English and just continued in his native language. In addition, according to Martijn, the presentation was like a one-man show: the speaker made no contact with his audience. After him, a lady took the floor. Her English was better, but her accent sometimes made it difficult to understand her. She did interact with the audience in a professional manner, which helped to make her message stick better.
English language as a challenge for professionals
All in all, it’s a bit of a shame to see such language blunders at a large, international congress. While an event like this magnifies the obstacles of using English, the same problems can arise on a smaller scale within a company. English communication in international teams can be challenging and may even cause great frustration. It is disturbing when, time and time again, your colleagues do not understand you, when you have to repeat what you say, or when you keep finding yourself asking for repetition and explanation. This doesn’t improve the team’s mood and it makes work processes run less smoothly. Wouldn’t it benefit your business if your professionals could improve their Business English? This is a challenge that Flowently can help you with!
Together with Flowently, you can create a program tailored to your needs, so you can learn what is relevant to you. Would you like to know more about our Business English program? Contact us for information.