My fiancé is a Latino, fluent in English but raised in Guatemala. He’s an environmental/sustainability consultant with a MA from Yale and an MBA. He does have an accent and I think that makes (cont)

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OP, I’m sorry to hear about your experience. I think there’s plenty to be optimistic about given that he’s getting call backs for initial screens / interviews. There’s a lot of entropy in job searching, even for native English speakers, and especially for attractive jobs like the ones he’s pursuing. While I don’t have a noticeable accent (raised in PR), I’ve also struggled in the past with verbiage / precision. Things that have helped me get better include: - Rehearse common interview questions with a strict 2-min time limit. IMO English is a more precise and concise language than Spanish. As a native Spanish speaker it’s important to practice with a time limit to make your language crisper. - Focus on pacing and strategic pauses to add impact - Err on the side of overconfidence. Go in with a mindset that you are crushing it and if they don’t understand you, it’s their problem (eg don’t feel like you need to add more color than what’s necessary). - Practice, practice, practice!

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This is really helpful advice thank you ZS! I will pass this along

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Is that something you think is happening or did he express that concern himself?

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I think it’s happening. He’s had some success but it just seems like such a low call back rate from a first phone screen when they loved his resume. Much lower than me for example. He gets so many more first screen calls than me as a percentage of jobs applied for but significantly fewer call backs after the first or second contact. I’ve heard him interview on the phone so know that what he’s saying about experience, background is strong. He’s also very friendly. But if a role is client facing or investor facing, he almost always doesn’t make it further (or in final rounds he does make it to, he loses out to a white frat guy type). This is my theory over time from observation that accent plays a larger role than it should. He’s got a good role right now, but took two years of interviewing to get it. I worry about his ability to move if this role were to disappear or he were just ready to move on in time. I worry every time he wants to switch jobs, it’s going to be a marathon

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I would say to use his background as a way to stand out instead of pretending to be whitewashed

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Valid. I like this strategy

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His interviewing tougher for so many client service professional firms. Interviews are so much about how you speak. His word choice could be a bit more precise (white woman here educated into the importance of very specific word choice) but most of his career has been in English and he has done very well when given a chance. Any advice you have on getting past these stereotypes regarding minor accents and word choice? I’ve helped him prepare a lot for interviews but I can see how the white professional community often looks at him differently when they hear a hint of an accent. It’s frustrating

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There are language / communication coaches that can help with this.

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