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Old 07-02-2013, 11:16 AM
 
1 posts, read 670 times
Reputation: 11

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It is only here in North America (US/Canada) that we have this BS culture that says "you have an accent" For those of us that have travelled to other places, we know there is no such thing as this. I mean, in this day of globalization, who really cares how you sound, as long as you are fluent. Have we asked ourselves that how come these folks understand us and our "accent" but some of us seem to have a problem "understanding" their "accent" under certain circumstances? So in this case, if this gentleman's "accent" was such a problem, how come the manager was able to identify that his English is fluent? If you really have a problem understanding him, then you shouldn't be able to piece together a thing he has said. To be honest with ourselves, when we travel to Asia and Africa to secure those business contracts do we really have a problem "understanding" these folks? Or do we have a problem "understanding" them when we sign them up here for student loans and mortgages? Is their "accent" a problem in these situations? Why does the "accent" thing become a problem when they want to access some of the benefits that we may feel we have reserved for ourselves. I'm sure for this man, his "accent" would not have been a problem if he was trying to get a low level job. And this is why I believe that this attitude really is systemic racism. If you have acknowledged that his English is fluent and he has the experience to do the job then hire him if he is your top candidate. But to then also tell him that he should attend an accent-modification class is absolute nonsense. So, how then does equal opportunity and diversity come to play in this context?

This "accent" thing is even so laughable sometimes that we tell the Britons that come here that they have an accent..wow! I mean, if there is anybody at all that should have a problem that others are not speaking proper English the way they would, it should be them, not us.

Come on folks, the world has moved on, it is a global village. This is such a petty and childish thing to dwell on when we have pressing issues to address such as how we in North America are fast losing our significance on the global stage. I mean, our level of education is rapidly falling that most of our kids cannot even compete globally. These are real issues to address than being bothered about how others sound.
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Old 07-02-2013, 11:20 AM
 
Location: Great State of Texas
86,093 posts, read 72,297,737 times
Reputation: 27564
Quote:
Originally Posted by Old Tired Man View Post
A man came in for an interview at my son's company. The man could speak fluent English but you could not understand half of what he was saying. His accent was so strong no one could understand him. When he called up and asked if he was hired the manager told him that he was a nice man and had lots of skills but because of his accent he was nearly impossible to understand and the job required regular phone and in person communication in English. The phone went dead and the manager assumed he had hung up.

A few days later a letter was written to the CEO of the company from the man about being discriminated against because of his accent. Now the CEO wants him brought in again for more interviews.

I think the manager who was so honest was outspoken but just trying to help the guy out. Others would say the manager was racist for telling him to go to an accent modification class. What do you think?
The days of honesty are long gone. Years ago that man would have taken that as a sign that he needs to work on his speaking ability before applying for more jobs or seek a job with less verbal communications.

Today..it's right to the EEOC to file discrimination.

No wonder employers just say "yes or no" to hiring and only give dates of employment as reference now. We did this to ourselves.
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Old 07-02-2013, 11:41 AM
 
Location: Montreal, Quebec
15,087 posts, read 11,973,569 times
Reputation: 9708
I'm pretty sure the Honey Boo Boo clan thinks they speak fluent English, but you still need subtitles to know what they're saying.
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Old 07-02-2013, 02:27 PM
 
36,291 posts, read 16,215,126 times
Reputation: 9756
I have no problem with people speaking English with an accent. I commend them for at least learning our language. However, there have been times when I have called a company with a problem and I can hardly understand the person on the other end because of their strong accent. I think those who have a strong accent shouldn't deal with the public. There are other jobs they can do where that isn't a part of their job.
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Old 07-02-2013, 02:29 PM
 
43 posts, read 27,554 times
Reputation: 15
The only ones who should get jobs are real American citizens.
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Old 07-02-2013, 02:31 PM
 
4,743 posts, read 3,718,243 times
Reputation: 2481
[quote=Old Tired Man;28122458]
Quote:
Originally Posted by MIKEETC View Post

I disagree, the man was a hero for telling the immigrant the truth.

A hero?

bad policy that puts companies at risk is no hero

Should fire the numb nuts, doesn't belong in HR


- stick with the standard answer "at this time we are pursuing other candidates"
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Old 07-02-2013, 03:02 PM
 
47,576 posts, read 60,475,092 times
Reputation: 22275
Accent has zero to do with race.
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Old 07-02-2013, 03:06 PM
 
47,576 posts, read 60,475,092 times
Reputation: 22275
Quote:
Originally Posted by weltschmerz View Post
I'm pretty sure the Honey Boo Boo clan thinks they speak fluent English, but you still need subtitles to know what they're saying.
But they are different because they are southern white Americans liberals despise them and condemn their accentd.
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Old 07-02-2013, 03:27 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
27,139 posts, read 29,534,576 times
Reputation: 26599
Accents are not a problem, but heany accents combined with poor enunciation, diction or cadence would be a problem for phone communications.

Unfortunately, in today's world, if you want give a job seeker candid feedback, you should wait until they ask.
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Old 07-02-2013, 03:37 PM
 
10,357 posts, read 7,950,091 times
Reputation: 4547
Quote:
Originally Posted by Old Tired Man View Post
The Manager was trying to tell the poor man with the incredibly strong accent an inconvenient truth, that he was not being hired because no one could understand him. People don't hear themselves or understand their weaknesses and the immigrant likely was quite proud that he had learned to speak and understand English. But it is one thing to say the words and another thing to have people understand you. The job required great communications skills in English, and the applicant spoke English but few people could understand what he was saying.

I think the manager was naive but someone needs to be honest with the immigrant and explain to him that he needs to modify his accent or he will be unemployed a long time. Why can't people tell him the inconvenient truth?
Try learning a foreign language and then eliminating your American accent. It's pretty hard to do.
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