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Workshops for Managers

Catalyst Communication offers two workshops to address what management can do to support the language and cultural learning that ESL employees need to undergo in order to be even more effective contributors to their workplace. These workshops are interactive- participants are asked to come with their experience, questions, and ideas.

The first workshop will look at the cultural challenges of managing employees from different backgrounds. Issues like facial expressions, the amount of silence we are comfortable with, how close we stand to each other have an enormously impact on the gut-level assumptions we make. We often assume that people are cold or overly friendly because of these basic cultural differences. The first step to take in addressing these issues is to become much more culturally aware of our own values and perceptions. As we realize our perceptions and values are culturally bound, we’re better able to interact with people from other cultures.

The second workshop will focus on language. We will investigate how small changes in how managers communicate information can lead to significant increases in comprehension and effectiveness. Native English speakers are often not aware of the difficulties English as a second language speakers have in understanding English. By focusing on how information is organized, using comprehension checks, watching the speed of the discussion, summarizing, and being aware of the vocabulary used, comprehension and, ultimately, productivity improve.

Follow up coaching is available.

It’s crucial that your employees have excellent communication skills as these underpin all the work they do. As well, as the shortage of skilled employees becomes more severe, it becomes more and more important to retain and develop current employees. Newly arrived Canadians and employees who speak English as a Second Language have particular needs and challenges.