A recent study carried out by a researcher at the University of Manchester, England, Alex Baratta, found that trainee teachers with certain regional accents were being encouraged to reduce their accent and to try and speak English with a posh accent, like the Queen, in order to get ahead in their jobs. It was suggested by him that this is a form of snobbery – “There is a respect and tolerance for diversity in society, yet accents do not seem to get this treatment – they are the last form of acceptable prejudice.” Many of the trainees who changed their accents to that of “The Queen’s English”, felt that they were losing their identity and selling out to succeed when they changed their English pronunciation. He suggests that in a society where diversity is embraced, there still appears to be a stigma against certain accents. Is it really necessary that we all pronounce English the same way to fit in and get ahead?
At Change Your Accent we firmly believe that it is important to embrace diversity and maintain your cultural identity. However, learning how to improve English pronunciation to be better understood, can help you to succeed in both work and social situations. Improving your English speaking skills will improve your self-confidence and give you the tools you need to get ahead. So, no, you don’t need to sound posh like the Queen to succeed. Sound like yourself, but use our proven accent reduction strategies for successful communication and to get ahead.