Your Accent is Your Asset
Do you have an accent like me? Do you consider your accent an asset or a liability?
After many years of living and speaking internationally, I now believe my accent is what I make it to be. It can be a liability, just as it can be an asset. In this write up, I share with the reasons I consider accents to be assets.
Asset # 1: Accents Adds Diversity:
In today ‘s global workforce, accents are a given. There is no way we can turn the clock back. Chances are that you ‘ve made a call to call center located in a foreign country of late. Because economic reasons driving outsourcing and global migrations, we are going to see more accents in the workplace. The global workforce of tomorrow is no longer going to be a homogenous accent. It is time to get comfortable with accents because accents will continue to shape our workplaces in immeasurable ways.
Asset# 2: Accents Represent Authenticity:
Other than pretending to speak like someone else, anyone with an accent should be proud of their authenticity. This is what makes you different. This is what makes you unique. Just like you will not like to be called some one else ‘s name, so is the case with your accent. Your accent speaks volumes of who you whether you want to keep or abandon your roots. If you are proud of yourself as a person, you should also be proud of your accent, that is what makes you a genuine person with unique ideas and perspectives.
Asset # 3: Message Trumps Accent:
Have you ever heard the phrase content is king? Audiences tend to appreciate the speakers of presenters with better content. It is true that your accent counts. It however does not supersede your message. Regardless of your accent, most members of you audience will rate you based on what value you deliver. Are there exception to this? Yes. However, I believe that the vast majority of the audiences will definitely evaluate you, based on what they learned from you and not where your accent comes from. Who cares about your accent when you can deliver a powerful message that connects and communicates?
Asset # 4: Accents are Exotic
I have been complimented several times for my accent. You better believe me. Though the Governor of California is often ridiculed by late night comics, I believe that he has been complimented by the people of California and his wife for his exotic accent. Though I consider my accent somewhat goofy and like that of a a descendant of Yoda, I have been complimented by the fairer sex. Not bad for a guy who did no set out hoping to be noticed by any measure at all for such an inauspicious attribute. Beware, you too can have such compliments come your way. Just relax and bask in the glory of such moments.
Asset # 5: Accents Get Attention
I have been at a conference in which my fellow co-presenters of the home accent have been treated unfairly. To a large extent, I believe they did not get much respect because they sounded like everyone else. Unfortunately, the audience did not give them the benefit of doubt which they gave me. Because I had foreign accent everyone woke up to listen to me, even though professionally, I did not think that I was any better than my fellow local presenters. Thus, your accent can also give you an unfair advantage.
Beware, your accent can be your asset. Use it to the best of your advantage!