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What is Your Learning Style?

What is Your Learning Style?

Did you know that speaking a second language can improve your memory and cognitive abilities? Before we get ahead of ourselves, we’ve identified the four learning styles that will help you speak a second language in no time! Some people are visual learners while others prefer to listen to music or lectures. There is no right or wrong way to learn a language; you have to do what works best for your learning style. Are you curious as to what learning style best suits you? The most widely used tool for this is the VARK model, developed by Neil Fleming in 1987. VARK stands for Visual, Auditory, Reading and writing, and Kinesthetic learning.

Many of our language instructors follow this model because they understand that each student has a different approach and preference when it comes to learning a different language. And depending on the language, you may prefer a different style. For example, students whose native language is English may prefer the visual style when learning Japanese; but while learning Spanish, they may gravitate more towards a reading and writing lesson. Learning styles are not one size fits all. Many students will use a combination of learning styles depending on their objectives and schedule. For example, someone traveling frequently may prefer to have lessons virtually and incorporate the use of a textbook rather than a hands-on in person lesson.

Not sure what style works best for you? Read the tips below to find your learning style.

  • Visual – prefers to use pictures, images, diagrams, movies
  • Auditory – prefers music, lectures, discussion
  • Reading and writing – prefers reading textbooks, taking and writing notes
  • Kinesthetic – prefers hands-on activities, experiments, manipulating objects and materials

Visit our Language Training page today to learn about the programs we offer!

What It’s Like to Live the Life of an Expatriate

What It’s Like to Live the Life of an Expatriate

It’s been two years, and it’s time to come home

How can a concerned employer minimize re-entry pain for the returning expat and the family when the way things used to run has changed?  Is there any way to avoid reverse culture shock? At Techworld, we believe there is! Repatriation orientation programs can provide your expats with a new sense of belonging and an ability to better visualize and manage successful returns.

Techworld follows a re-onboarding plan that begins months before an actual return. It addresses both sides of this complex equation:  for returning families and for returning professionals alike.

The Family

Repatriation assistance for the family begins with assessing expectations.  Basic questions are asked about the expat assignment and how families see their impending return home. Answers to those questions – particularly those which express doubt or uncertainty – are used to develop specific programming.  A one or two-day repatriation programs developed and delivered to family members.  (Based on age, children may be included.)

The best repat orientation programs key on assessing the significance of what family members have learned abroad and its impact on their lives.  They identify new family member skills, interests, and perspectives.  They examine common readjustment difficulties in values, trends, and culture and provide suggestions for dealing with such challenges.  A common program thread is that all family members will support, encourage and contribute to each other’s experiences in addressing such reverse culture shock.

No two expats or families are the same.  The best repatriation programs and processes are highly individualized.  “One size fits all” approaches don’t fit.

The Professional

Returning expats need formal, well-thought-out support from their employers. Fewer than 25% of companies have repatriation program for returning employees. There is a distinct loss of the return on investment associated with international assignments if new skills and expertise aren’t integrated into the organization.  It’s vital to find ways to recognize and use new skill sets and the experiences your expats gain abroad.

The very best way to do so, of course, is to align the returning expat’s ability to perform with new work.  In addition, employers should take pains to solicit helpful, big-picture lessons about differing overseas practices and protocols.

You may not want the returning expat to immediately be placed in a position where they are independently responsible for various tasks. If this is unavoidable how might those lessons be leveraged to fit the needs of your company? Wise employers will take pains to find alternative outlets for such new skills and expanded expat knowledge.  Among the possibilities are collaborating with expats on:

  • Lunch-and learn-presentations
  • Special projects which draw on overseas insights
  • Hands-on support for the company’s future expats

A global organization’s success in providing outlets for sharing key expat learnings, expertise, and suggestions will benefit both returning expats and the company.

The Bottom Line

There are many benefits to an organized repatriation of deliberate re-onboarding from Techworld.

Failure to develop and deploy such a plan, on the other hand, may very well prove a gold mine for headhunting companies which are only too happy to locate and woo experienced talent to succeed on a global stage under another firm’s banner.

To learn more about the programs we offer, visit our Repatriation page today!

Ted Travels to Shanghai, China

Ted Travels to Shanghai, China

 

Shanghai Museum of Ancient Chinese Art

The past few weeks have been amazing.  Shanghai is beautiful! Chelsea brought me to the Shanghai Museum of Ancient Chinese Art housing over 120,000 pieces. It is considered one of China’s first world-class modern museums after being rebuilt in 1996. The building was designed by local architect Xing Tonghe. The building is in the shape of a ding, an ancient bronze cooking vessel which is round on top with a square base. The ding symbolizes the ancient Chinese perception of the world as, “round sky, square earth.” 

  

People’s Park

One sunny day Chelsea brought me to People’s Park located in the Huangpu District, which was originally part of the Shanghai Race Club’s racecourse, where the people of Shanghai gathered to watch horse racing. The Race Club, built in 1850, was Shanghai’s first racecourse. The Race Club’s activities came to an end during the Second Sino-Japanese War and the Chinese Civil War.

Every weekend the “Match Making Corner” is held where anxious parents of unmarried adults attend with a paper listing basic information of their children such as age, height, income, education, and personality to find them a significant other.

 

Chinese Cuisine

Let me tell you, the food there is AMAZING! We ate dinner at a local street food venue where I had so many amazing dishes. Everything from Spinach Noodles (bō cài miàn) to Fried Mashi (chǎo má shi) and BBQ Meat (kǎo ròu). It was pure Chinese cuisine, like nothing I have ever had before.

 

If you ever have the opportunity to visit Shanghai, China, I highly recommend going. The food, local venues, and history are just a few topics that Techworld’s instructors like Chelsea can help you with. Contact Techworld today to set up your cultural or language training.

 

Next, I’m heading back to New York City in the United States to work with Rachel, one of Techworld’s great group of Project Managers. Check back in next month to see how it went!

 

How A Killer LSP Can Make Your Life Easier

How A Killer LSP Can Make Your Life Easier

LSP.  Great, you think, just what I need. Another acronym.

But wait until you hear how an LSP can make your life easier.

LSP stands for Language Services Provider.  An LSP can help you by translating your marketing or training materials, providing an interpreter when your German team comes to visit the American headquarters, teaching your employees in Italy how to greet their Chinese colleagues and get your CEO ready for his trip to Brazil by helping him learn some Portuguese. We know what you’re thinking: I already have a global team.  I have employees all over the world who speak their native language and English. I’ll just have them do it!

Here’s why you might want to leave it to the professionals.

Techworld Is Convenient

Say you need your video translated and subtitled in 26 languages.  Do you really have the time to manage that process? And how do your bilingual employees fit this into their schedule with everything else they need to do?  By the way, none of your team knows how to subtitle a video either. Techworld has a team of linguists around the world, with years of translation experience.  Our in-house production team can create subtitled videos as easily as you can open a Word doc.

Techworld Guarantees Quality

Our translation process is rigorous. First, your material is translated by an experienced, trained linguist.  Then a second linguist reviews the entire translation to ensure proper spelling and grammar, consistency with previous texts and – most important – that the message is as loud and clear in Arabic as it is in English. Techworld will even partner with your teams to ensure that specific regional preferences are taken into consideration and incorporated into your translations.

Techworld Lives and Breathes Customer Service

Like most companies, we are only as good as our customers think we are.  So we go out of the way to treat your business like our business.  Sometimes we start our day at 4:30 am.  And sometimes we end our day at 4:30 am.  We’re always available and ready to go. Nothing is as important to us as how we can make your life easier, so you can meet your own business goals.

If getting a few things off your plate sounds like something you need, please give us a call at 01.248.288.5900.   Or explore the rest of our site to see how we can help you and read more about our specific language services.

How Do You Use Loanwords?

How Do You Use Loanwords?

Many of the words we use today are “loanwords”, or words borrowed from other languages. It’s fascinating to think that over time, some foreign words can become a part of one’s language. This is due to contact with other cultures and languages. Usually, loanwords become part of a language when we encounter a new concept of if that word does not exist in the native language. Other times, the new words just sound “chic” and it slowly becomes part of the native language. Here are some commonly used loanwords that have become part of the English language:

  • Siesta, pronto, llama, armada, armadillo, barracuda, bronco (Spanish origin)
  • Bundt cake, delicatessen, hamburger, pretzel, pumpernickel, strudel (German origin)
  • Bonsi, haiku, karaoke, manga, origami, edamame, hibachi (Japanese origin)
  • Alchemy, alcove, alfalfa, algebra, carat, gazelle, hummus, lemon (Arabic origin)

It may seem ‘kitschy’ to be so ‘gung-ho’ about loanwords, but who knows, being familiar with these common words and phrases might stop you from committing a major ‘faux pas’ at your next important business ‘rendezvous’! If you would like to learn more about loan words, we suggest taking a look at these texts:

  • Borrowed Words: A History of Loanwords in English, by Philip P. Durkin
  • Loanwords in the World’s Languages: A Comparative Handbook, by Martin Haspelmath

Interested in learning more? Contact us today!