Learn to avoid pitfalls
People who use English as a second language often have no idea of the mistakes they commonly make. Those can range from subtle but significant grammatical errors to structural flaws in their pronunciation of English. Such pitfalls for non-native-speakers often form an obstacle to clear and efficient communication in both speech and writing. Sometimes they can even lead to embarrassing misunderstandings.
With over 25 years of experience in helping mainly Dutch speakers communicate more effectively in English, I am intimately familiar with the specific range of problems they typically face when using English. I am also keenly aware of the differences between English and other languages when it comes to the conventions in business and scientific writing.
Gain confidence through practice
Whether together with a group of their peers or in one-to-one coaching sessions, my clients become aware of their ‘blind spots’ when it comes to writing and speaking in English. I give them the tools they need to make specific improvements and provide opportunities for supervised practice with using those tools. The goal is to make them feel more confident in speaking or writing in English.
Sharpen your intercultural skills
While most of the people I train are Dutch speakers, my English language workshops or individual coaching programs can accommodate people from any background. Participants in my workshops often represent a variety of nationalities from both Western and Eastern Europe, Asia, North America, Latin America and Africa. I have been invited to give workshops in the Netherlands, Germany, Turkey and South Sudan.
My own experience of living as an expat in the Netherlands for nearly 35 years has opened my eyes to a broad range of cultural differences. I have used that experience in developing training programs to help people from all over the world improve their communication skills in international and/or intercultural contexts. Here, too, clear and effective communication in standard English is always the goal.