Customer support engineers in the Japanese division of a U.S.
multinational needed to contact American development engineers
in order to solve customer problems. Due to differences in approach
to writing email caused by cultural communication styles, problems
were slow to be resolved, causing customer complaints.
- Identified the specific writing style patterns and language
issues that were causing miscommunication and slow-downs in
response time to customers
- Produced a 3-day workshop for the Japanese engineers, clarifying
the cultural differences in writing style and providing customized
writing practice to make their e-mails easier for American counterparts
- Trained a local consultant already working at the Japanese
division to continue the process
Decreased number of e-mails required to resolve issues and increased
speed in solving customer problems.
A level 3 technician in a storage and data management company
needed to express himself more clearly. Feedback from customers
indicated that they could not understand the employee at times
due to his pronunciation problems and use of non-standard phrasing.
These communication issues were impeding the technician's ability
to work efficiently with customers in resolving technical problems
that affected their businesses.
- Uncovered thoughts that led to problems with word choice
- Identified pronunciation issues which interfered with comprehensibility.
- Delivered training to help the employee make the necessary
adjustments in his communication style
- Designed practice routines for the employee to assimilate
the new skills and patterns into his speech
The customers and internal managers reported that they no longer
had problems understanding the technician after he had completed
just 25% of his coaching program.
The manufacturing department of a mid-sized company was composed
primarily of immigrant assemblers and technicians. The company
wanted to institute problem-solving and process improvement teams
among all the employees. The company was also instituting a bonus
system, where the employees would receive bonuses for meeting
specific benchmarks based on their participation in teams. The
company’s effort was hampered by limited English skills among
the employees and complaints from the employees that they had
to work harder without making more money.
- Delivered process improvement and problem-solving training
- Redeveloped the process improvement and problem-solving materials
to make them accessible to the assemblers and technicians
- Trained employees in English communication and meeting skills
The company saved $1,000,000 the first year (after deducting
the cost of the LinguaTec program) due to increased speed in production.
Performance reviews for manufacturing employees A new system
for performance reviews required every employee in an engineering
and manufacturing company to complete a form detailing their contributions
to the company and their career goals for the coming year. The
first year this was instituted, the manufacturing manager and
supervisors spent over two months helping limited English-speaking
manufacturing employees complete the forms.
- Created a guidebook with examples of how to answer the questions
on the form and simple definitions of difficult terms
- Provided two three-hour workshops with explanations and practice
in writing measurable goals and using the guidebook
Reduction in management and supervisor time by over 80%. (After
the training, it took them only two weeks of involvement.)