One of the major reasons for the preference of Filipinos as call center agents is because of the ability of the Filipinos to quickly adapt different kinds of foreign accents whether British, Australian or American (i.e. Alabama, New York etc) Accent is important to help facilitate effective communication and understanding. Clients and customers are more confident and relaxed to talk to customer service agents who possess similar accents like they have.
How exactly can you adapt an accent? First of, it must be noted that Filipinos are blessed with an “accent-neutral” English. Compared to other non-native English speakers, Filipinos speak English with the least recognizable accent or pattern compared to Indians, Chinese, Japanese and other nationalities. This allows them to easily adapt different accents not only of Americans or the Brits but even the accents of non native speakers like Chinese, Indians, and other people.
The most apparent way to adapt the English accent of a particular nationality is to surround yourself and talk to people whose accent you want to adopt. For instance, if you want to adapt the American accent, then talk to Americans. If you want to adapt the British accent, then always talk to a British. Through this, one can better learn what to imitate. The idea here is to expose oneself to the American or British language, which one can also attain by watching American or British films.
The next step is to practice. Imitate the accent and practice by talking using the imitated accent. This is why a British or an American friend is important because apparently, you’ll need someone to talk to or else then speak to co-employees who already possess the accent. This is exactly why most call center companies usually adopt a “Speak English Only” policy within the office premises to practice agents to talk using a particular accent.
Finally, learn their slang and their idiomatic expressions. Slang refers to words and phrases that is only understandable to a particular culture. Idiomatic expressions are also words or phrases whose meaning is not deducible from those words but on the experience of the people who developed the idioms. Both slang and idioms form part of the unique dialect of a people or part of a country, which agents must also be familiar with in adopting the accent and language of the customers they serve.
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