November 28, 2015

Business English and Career Guidance Coaching for Keralites and Indians

This post outlines some common questions that prospective clients to Authentic Journeys have about what we do, the process and the outcomes

What are some examples of goals you’ve helped others reach?  
  • I will learn and apply American phone and email etiquette while handling routine as well as challenging encounters with my US colleagues and clients. 
  • I will learn how to use casual talk with Americans in e-mail, phone and in-person communication. 
  • I will identify my personal values and merge them with career and business values, assuring I am communicating these to my clients and colleagues, especially in difficult encounters.  
  • Identify and work toward career goals
  • I will improve my pronunciation and presentation skills to move up the corporate ladder.
  • I will learn to communicate more clearly with my supervisor / direct reports to understand expectations and work flow. 
  • Learning to communicate with more clarity and crispness will improve my confidence and allow me to get more exciting projects at work. 
  • Create and attend effective meetings with virtual teams and global colleagues. 

What do I learn about in a session with you? 
Because each session or lesson is tailored to suit your unique needs, the topics will vary based on your unique accent or cross-cultural communication and career needs. The goals are written based on your needs (or needs identified by your manager), and based on this, each session includes reflection, brainstorming, facilitation and follow-up of action plans.

How do you help me realize progress?
We use gap analysis to understand where you are and where you want to be. In the first meeting we brainstorm some goals that you can work on. By the second meeting I am helping you move closer and close to achieving your language learning and cross-cultural communication goals. 




Besides being a native speaker, how are your Spoken English classes different than taking them from local teachers in Kerala?

Feedback from clients in Kerala and throughout India include:
Your tips helped me speak with more clarity and confidence not only with foreign clients, but Indians in different parts of India, even Malayalees in different parts of Kerala!
You are the only teacher who gives us good feedback to improve our English. Your feedback points out our problems, your lessons help us to find the right solution and apply it to improve our English. After your lessons, I have been able to self-correct myself in both my written and spoken English. It gives me a lot of confidence. Thank you.

There are many native speakers who understand how to help Hindi speakers or even Tamil speakers, but so many native speakers teaching spoken English do not know the unique problems of Kerala people. You have helped me overcome some big problems in English like how to properly pronounce "mp" words and how to use articles and prepositions properly. It's not easy to change my behavior, but because you are honest and do not lie about my problems or progress, I can make better progress.


Am I required to do homework?

Yes, you are! Homework is often identified by you related to the goals that have been set. This homework is often ideally completed in short bursts, say 10 minutes a day everyday in-between sessions (especially for pronunciation work). In addition to this, we maintain a feedback form that details the work we complete together each week. You will be required to spend 5-10 minutes between sessions to fill this out for the maximum benefit. 

These sessions should not be thought of as college classes. No one is encouraged to 'mug up' the day before the call. In fact, this will not benefit participants at all. The kind of skill building we work on in sessions has to be practiced a little each day to fine tune it, and to embed the learning into our behavior and unconsciousness for long term success. 

You said you create a lesson for each session. What if I have something else urgent to discuss?

In the first five or ten minutes of every meeting we ‘check in’ and you let me know what’s been going on since we last met. We will review the homework and also talk about any pressing issues you’d like to discuss in the current session. We can adjust the session contents based on your requirements. If we do not cover the lesson I planned, we can save it for another day or I would email you parts of it for your reference.


Can my friends join in on the lesson?
If you have friends who are struggling with the same concerns as you or want to learn about the same culture adjustment topics or accent reduction strategies, yes, up to three of your friends can join the lesson.

There are so many of us Non-Resident Keralites (NKRs) or Non-Resident Indians (NRIs)? Can you help me if I don't live in Kerala or Kochi?
Of course, I am happy to help Malayalees (or Indians) regardless of their residence. We can meet over Skype, telephone or even by chat! It depends on the business, career or language (spoken English) skills you want to improve the most. I have also helped people through recording analysis alone to improve. All recordings shared with me remain confidential.

How long is the contract? What are the time frames and where do we meet?
The most popular package of classes includes 10 two hour sessions, for a total of 20 hours. Typically, meeting 2 hours every other week in your office or other public spot works best. (I do not have an office as I am a consultant and meet professionals in their work environments or over the phone/Internet). Though this is the most practical option to fit into most people's schedules as well as giving enough time in between lessons to practice and integrate the lessons into daily life, the 20 hour (or any time limited) package can be taken by you in any format you'd like based on scheduling. (For instance, 5 four hour sessions, 3 days, 6-7 hours a day, etc.)

What are your rates?

Contact us for the most current proposal, program packages and rates.

How do I set up my first meeting? 
Contact us to set up a first meeting. For more frequently asked questions, see this page





Updated June 2013, November 2015, May 2016

Photo credits

Indian IT employee (male): Pandiyan V, flickr
Lady in sari: Sean Ellis, flickr
These two photos are not photos of actual Authentic Journeys clients, but represent typical clients

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