Learn or Improve a New Language Online with a Live Language Tutor
Customization, relevancy, insanely in-depth assessment of needs and constant tweaks to curriculum based on weekly and monthly goals and needs – all done with a LIVE instructor.
Your employees can conveniently learn or improve a new language online with a live, private language fluency tutor. Contrary to popular belief, learning or improving a language online is just as effective as in-person lessons. Language is learned through relevant, interesting conversations, and it doesn’t matter whether you can reach over and touch the fluency partner or not. It’s just less expensive.
Fluency Corp offers online language training that’s taught by live native speakers – live teachers are more engaging and give more accountability than a self-paced software program. We know there are quality self-paced programs available, but while these may be less expensive, we believe a live tutor will build fluency more quickly for what your employees need to do, since we base our conversations and lessons on your employees’ specific jobs and challenges. And of course, what better way to improve speaking, than to speak?
We at Fluency Corp are huge advocates of on-site workplace language training. But we also realize that there are times when a native speaker instructor in the language you need just isn’t available in your area, or at a time that is most convenient for you (6am? 11pm?). Luckily, technology now makes language instruction by native speakers accessible no matter where language learners are located or what time you want your language practice. I personally take classes at either 7am or 11 pm, because it is very unlikely that I will have something come up that will cause me to cancel my session.
For example, let’s say you are planning to relocate employees to one of your overseas locations. You already have on-site instruction lined up for the employees once they are in their new country. But if you also offer online language training with a live instructor before they leave home, you give them a head start on preparing for their international move. They’ll feel at home more quickly after they move overseas, and that increases the odds that your international relocations (which carry a hefty price tag for your company) will be successful. Not to mention, they will be able to contribute at work right away, as opposed to being lost for the first 6-12 months (which is typically how long it takes to feel comfortable with the language depending on hours of exposure per day. More exposure = more quickly assimilated). A recent client survey shows that new employees recently relocated to the US lose 5-10 hours a week of productive workweek hours their first year in the US. This could be avoided!
Another example: You employees collaborate with colleagues around the globe, including some who speak a different language and come from a different culture. Ideally, you’d like to give your employees time abroad to develop language and cultural fluency. But what if relocations just don’t make sense for your company right now, or you don’t have the budget to send as many employees overseas as you’d like to? Fortunately, you can help employees build fluency without relocating them. And one of the best ways to do that is online language training with a live instructor. They can get basic language and cultural knowledge about their colleagues with just a couple of hours a week on Skype. This will allow the employee to collaborate better with their overseas colleagues, not to mention 1) understand how hard it is to learn a new language as an adult 2) be empathetic with those working in another culture when they let things slid or when things aren’t done a certain way or on a certain timeline and 3) learn how to better communicate with less idioms and simpler words, since they now understand how complicated learning a new language can be.
First, your employee chooses the best time to have class.
We want to ensure that the schedule is convenient to the specific schedule of every single one of your employees.
Second, we ask your employees to fill out an individualized form to discuss each need. This could be working on confidence during presentations, practicing speaking at meetings, working on more native vocabulary and idioms for work, clarity in pronunciation so others can understand more easily, going over emails to ensure clarity when writing, and more.
Then, we set a start date for the lessons. During this first class, your employee’s fluency partner will dig even deeper, asking questions to pinpoint exactly what is relevant and useful for your employee. What will increase confidence, understanding and communication on a daily and even hourly basis. We write out the goals for the next 3 months, and send these goals to HR or the manager. We reassess the goals and send progress reports every 3 months.
Throughout the course, we are constantly making changes to the curriculum. A stagnant curriculum becomes irrelevant. And irrelevancy is a waste of your time and money. That’s why we reassess your employees’ needs during every class asking: what will be most relevant for us to work on this upcoming week? What are you struggling with more or need most help with? What will improve your communication and ability to work at 100% at work?
We work with your emails, your memos, your vocabulary, in order to be as effective as possible and see immediate growth throughout even the first week in lessons. We supplement with various books, TV, radio and other MODERN materials that the employee can work with at home, all depending on the needs of the client.
We recommend a minimum of 26 hours of lessons, but see the most results when at least 52+ hours are taken. If you were to take 2 hours a week, that would be 6 months of classes. 90% of our clients take at least 100-200 hours of lessons to get to a native level of speaking with complete confidence and total dominance of the language.
One of the reasons that Fluency Corp’s online language training is so effective is that it includes the same features as our on-site language classes including training with a live instructor.
Just like our in-person training, our online classes are taught by live, native speakers. It doesn’t matter how many recordings your language learners listen to or how many vocabulary lists they memorize if they can’t hold their own in conversations with native speakers. (Writing and emails can also be a part of the course if relevant for the participant.) Online training with a live, experienced, native speaker instructor quickly gives your employees the practical, conversational experience they need to do their jobs.
Our online language training is fully customized to your needs. With “off the rack” self-paced programs, your employees might waste time studying vocabulary and phrases that they’ll never use. Fluency Corp’s instruction focuses on language skills they’ll use every day. We ask your employees SPECIFICALLY about their job, their role, their meetings, their presentations. Nothing cookie cutter about it.
Fluency Corp online classes don’t just teach language skills. Instructors also offer valuable cultural guidance. After all, working or living in a different culture isn’t just about understanding what’s being said around you. It’s also about understanding customs, tradition and etiquette. Feeling more comfortable in the culture is an enormous reason relocations are a success and one of the top reasons they are a failure.
Don’t under estimate the power of personal connection in online language learning. Even though meetings are virtual instead of in-person, your language learners will still benefit enormously from working with a live instructor who knows their unique goals and needs, and cares about their progress. Learning from a live instructor instead of on their own will make your employees more engaged, enthusiastic and accountable as they build their language skills. When you ask most people how they became fluent, they usually cite having made a really good friend, and because of that, they spoke the new language for hours. That’s what we provide – professional language advisors that get your employee TRULY fluent. Not canned fluency from a book.
Jim wants to learn Spanish to better communicate with his 60% Spanish-speaking population at work. Even though his employees speak more English than he speaks Spanish, he feels it’s important to connect with them. He decides to take 3 hours a week online: Mondays 7-8am, Wednesdays 5-6pm and Saturdays 9-10am. Since he started at level A0 (no prior knowledge of the language), it will take him 100 hours to get through A1 and A2. These levels are the beginner levels. This is his goal – to be a successful beginner speaker. He’ll be able to have short, basic conversations about himself and others. This will allow him to get to know his coworkers better. We will implement specific job-related vocabulary and even teach him phrases that he uses daily at work. We asked him to write down the words and phrases he uses most each day, so that we can incorporate these phrases into his lessons.
Jin wants to polish and perfect her English. She’s a Senior Analyst for a Fortune 100 car company. She has a C1 level and has been working in Silicon Valley for the past 10 years. C1 level is an advanced level; 1 level above professional proficiency. This means she can easily do her job in English. But she knows that she stills misses some things in meetings, but is too self-conscious to bring it up. She also notices that sometimes her coworkers look at her confused, and has realized that she’s hard to understand at times, but no one says anything. She would like to work on less academic and more daily vocabulary so that she understands these daily phrases that everyone uses. Since she speaks Korean at home and on the weekends, she has missed a lot of the daily words that are so common, and she doesn’t socialize much in English. We got to know Jin, and we put together a program for her that consists of phrasal verbs, idioms, and American accent training to smooth out some incorrect pronunciations, and even work on her emails.
Every class we discuss 5 new words or phrases, and give her quizzes to ensure she can use them in sentences, and we discuss situations where these phrases would come up. She now watches 10-30 minutes of a sitcom each night as well, writing down new phrases or words that she hears and the context in which she hears them. She can watch TV with her family, since her children are native English speakers. This does not take away from family time.
We also work on accent training about 15 minutes per class, smoothing out her vowels and a few tricky consonants, while also helping her to connect her words more (called liaisons), so that it’s easier for a native speaker to understand her.
Jin is also listening to talk radio on her way to work now, and gives summaries to her fluency partner in class, and the fluency partner takes notes over grammar and vocabulary to ensure everything is used correctly. This helps her prepare for meetings when she has to give summaries or updates about work. We’ve also suggested lunch with an American coworker once a week, because she admitted that she mostly sits at her desk for lunch or eats with another Korean coworker. She has promised to reach out to native speakers for lunch once a week to develop deeper friendships with native speakers and others on her team.
This is simply a lack of confidence, but with her fluency partner, she gets more and more confident in her already-outstanding speaking ability more each class. This will allow her to speak up more in meetings and share more ideas, not to mention better collaborate with her teams.
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