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  • Jennifer Abramson

How I Built This - Accent talk



I was listening to one of my favorite podcasts, How I Built This with Guy Raz, when I heard a highly accomplished man named Hernan Lopez profiled. He was an early podcaster who created Wondery in 2016, which he later sold to Amazon for $300 million dollars. Prior to that, he was the President and CEO of Fox International Channels. Hernan is from Argentina and moved here in his 20's with what he described as "terrible" English skills. When Hernan's boss's boss suggested that Hernan take accent reduction classes, he saw that suggestion as a gift. Some quotes from the episode include:


"...as far as time spent vs. impact on my career, one of the best decisions I ever made and I recommended this to so many people over the years"

"Think about it - if you're at a meeting with your peers and you come up with a great idea, but you're not communicating it well...in a way that comes across. And then, another colleague who has a perfect accent and is a great communicators picks up on your idea, but then communicates it in a way that inspires people - that gets people to say, "Oh wow! That's a great idea!" Who do you think gets credit for the idea?"

"I don't think I would have made it to the C-Suite level at Fox if I hadn't taken those accent classes""

You'll notice that Hernan still has an Argentine accent, yet he is not challenging to understand. This is ideal - his cultural heritage has been preserved yet he is well understood!


Give it a listen here: https://wondery.com/shows/how-i-built-this/episode/10386-wondery-hernan-lopez/ or wherever you get your podcasts

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