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    8 Replies Latest reply on Oct 13, 2011 6:31 PM by OfficeGoddess

    Will accent matter?

    Witty_Frosty Adventurer

      Hi there,


      I wanna know if any of you folks that had experience doing business with foreigners would care about the accent. For instance, 2 mexican business man offer the same products at the same price, but one of them speaks english with spanish accent, the other speaks standard accent like he has been IN the states for many many years, would you prefer the later one?


      I know businessmen rely largely on rationality and reasoning, but will a nativish accent play a high hand?





        • Re: Will accent matter?

          Interesting question, Witty.  My thoughts are that it would depend on the business. I'll be curious to see the responses you receive!

          Thanks for posting !



          • Re: Will accent matter?
            JackieGold Scout

            It's somewhat of a controversial question, but yes I'm sure accent does factor into a customer/business-person's perception of you and your business. I think it's unfortunate that this is the case but it is nonetheless true. However, depending on the type of clientele you are dealing with, the accent might also work in your favor among those who appreciate diversity and internationalism.

            • Re: Will accent matter?
              SME_ally Adventurer

              i have been dealing with non-english speakers for over 17 years and have never considered a person's inability to speak proper english or his/her accent to be a deal breaker.  it is absurd to think otherwise.

                • Re: Will accent matter?
                  LUCKIEST Guide

                  Well put. It also depends on what part of the country we live in.

                  The greatest challenge to multiculturalism may be political.

                  There is talk of a retreat from multiculturalism as a normative ideal and as a set of policies in the West.

                  There is little retreat from recognizing the rights of minorities and indigenous peoples.

                  Part of the backlash against multiculturalism is based on fear and anxiety about foreign “others” 

                  for an imagined past when everyone shared thick bonds of identity and solidarity.

                  • Re: Will accent matter?
                    JackieGold Scout

                    Just because you don't doesn't mean others do.


                    I live in New York City  and consider myself to be extremely accepting of different cultures, races, ethnicities, religions, etc. But I wasn't referring to myself in my original response. I'm referring to many people I have encountered and known who feel otherwise.

                  • Re: Will accent matter?
                    OfficeGoddess Navigator

                    It's not the accent that matters to me, it's understanding what is being said.  I have spoken to folks from Indonesia with their lovely lilting accent and had no problem and I've spoken to U.S. Southerners (Alabama, Georgia, etc.) whom I couldn't understand to save my life,  As long as the language being spoken is comprehensible, an accent or lack of one really shouldn't matter.