When being fluent is not always enough

You may be fluent. You may even be confident, But are you doing enough to keep improving your communication skills as a non native English speaker?  Are you using your skills as effectively as you could?

Our Multi-Cultural Exchange is an opportunity to learn how to think differently, boost your confidence  together with your ‘people skills’ – and be part of a diverse multi-cultural community.

Run at the Bank of Ireland Enterprise Lounge in Trinity, this series of mini workshops has been created specifically for non-native English speakers living and working in Dublin who are looking for ways to up-skill and make real connections. 

If you have a reasonable, working knowledge of English and are an employee or business owner, job seeker or perhaps someone who is looking to develop a business or creative idea, this is an opportunity to become a more confident communicator by helping yourself and others as you learn with and from each other.
Creating a 'Culture of Conversation' for today

The MMTW Multi-Cultural Exchange is based on the belief that success comes from collaboration and the most sustainable relationships from creating a ‘culture of conversation’. Using your working knowledge of the English language, you will be improving your communication skills and gain confidence through the sharing of experience and expertise with the guidance of the Event Facilitator Janie Lazar, MMTW Founder and Business Owner.   

Booking essential. Places limited.



Face to Face Matters – it’s where real life happens!

Knowing What to Say and Using language appropriately – effectively – efficiently and in your own way

Yes, all of this matters and how you come across to people says much about you personally and professionally. Now we’re not saying you need to be perfect, that can be, well perhaps a little lacking in soul you might say.  Where you come from and accents are an essential part of who you are and in many instances can be quite endearing.  They are part of your identity and give powerful clues as to your cultural identity.

When you show who you really are through what you say, sharing what you feel by how you tell your story, people connect emotionally with you.

What we’re talking about is being understood, speaking clearly and effectively. In short, communicating in the most appropriate way in a manner which reflects who you are and represents your company well too. As a business owner, this is equally important as you are representing your business and in many cases as the business owner, you may also be representing your clients, their services and brands.  In doing so you’re carrying their reputations with you too. They have placed their trust in you and that carries a responsibility to be taken seriously.


Face to Face Matters - it's where real life happens.

(even though you're probably reading this on FB now!)

image from FB.  Source unknown.


Words do matter and it is important to be comfortable in how you use them so you can be understood, whether you are speaking in your own language or another. If you’re speaking without feeling, as if reciting from a script people will know. They will hear it in your voice, see it in your body language.. Aiming to be word perfect is unrealistic. Just because you’ve written your speech or presentation in one way, it does not mean you have to deliver it that way.  If you do, there’s a danger it will sound wooden and insincere.  The goal is to establish a rapport, a connection, to deliver a clear message that can be understood.  You need to understand who you are talking to, whether it is an audience of many or simply one other person and relate to them, deliver in a way which is appropriate to them.  Reading your audience, not reading to your audience is vital. The more you speak in public and make presentations, the more aware you become of how to keep on improving whatever the language and wherever you are in the world!.

Face to Face Matters  –  making life real

Click to talk to us about working with your company on a group or one to one basis.

Click here for details of our March 22nd Breakfast Event
7.45 Registration. 8am prompt start. Ends c. 9.30. am


When words don’t come fast enough

Years ago when I was a fairly competent French speaker living and working in Paris, I loved the life I had.  The only thing was that no matter how well I spoke the language, I often found that conversation progressed so fast that by the time I’d begun to speak, the moment was lost.  You may have experienced this too. Frustrated and disappointed often, I eventually lost confidence in my ability to contribute as effectively as I wanted to. I feel my employers lost out, I did and probably my clients at the time too – I hasten to add there were no complaints !!

Catch 22

I didn’t want to draw attention to the fact I needed help. My employers assumed that everything was ok because once I was ensconced I managed to get my work done efficiently. No-one asked or guessed anything was wrong at all. I never voiced my concerns. But with the benefit of hindsight, what a lost opportunity for both parties.  I never realized my potential within the organisation and my value to the company was not maximized.  Had I received more than basic induction training, which really revolved around product only I probably would have still been living in France.  Ah. C’est la vie…

Training needs are hopefully better identified these days, but I’m not entirely convinced. Technology is making so many every day tasks faster and in many instances being automated, thereby reducing the need or opportunity for human intervention. And yes, never has the need for human connection been greater. 

Is there something more about the 80/20 rule we should be looking at?

If more than 80% of our satisfaction in life comes from our relationships with others, the need to connect and communicate effectively and especially in a business environment  appropriately, boosting core communication skills and language competency where it is most needed has to be an integral part of a continual program of professional development.

I’ve been that executive working overseas, involved in client meetings, team meetings, training sessions. More recently, in Italy where people have been amazingly receptive to any efforts I make, once the conversation gets going, that sinking feeling returns as I cannot keep up enough to join in the conversation and I can feel my stress levels rising as I struggle to make sure I’ve understood the salient points of a meeting.

Emotions play havoc with our minds.  This we know. What we don’t fully appreciate is quite how this triggers unhelpful patterns of behavior, what employers can do to help and how we can help ourselves more.

It’s not rocket science and particularly as in Ireland the workplace is becoming more culturally diverse, we need to be more aware that many international employees are often doing jobs because of their native language and sometimes multilingual abilities  which is great for the clients they service. It may leave a gap where their Confidence and Competence (two words which in themselves can sound remarkably similar when mispronounced by a non native English Speaker!) in using English effectively may be slowing down the rate at which they integrate and contribute within their teams and the company overall. The greater the levels of engagement, the greater the performance.

Many people I work with whose first language is English lack confidence, fear public speaking and hate making presentations so it is easy to understand the difficulties facing non native English Speakers. I know. I’ve been there. And yes, lack of confidence, disappointment can play havoc with one’s emotions !

Much More Than Words specializes in working with International Executives boosting language competency through the provision of Professional and Personal Development.

‘the organisation as an emotional arena’  

18 January 2017 –  7.45 – 9.30 am

Be part of this conversation with Dr. Annette Clancy, Assistant Professor of Organisational Behaviour at UCD College of Business as she shares invaluable insights at our first Breakfast Meeting of 2017 for HR Specialists.

 Kindly hosted by the Bank of Ireland

at the new Enterprise Lounge at UCD, Montrose

Contact Janie: 086 857 2005 

booking advisable

One Free Place on Every Public Workshop

Is there such a thing as FREE?


In our world yes.
smiley-svgOver the years both Andrea and I have seen so many people unable to pay for professional training because training is not an option at work, or perhaps for small business owners in particular, there never seems to be enough time or money. If you’re a job seeker or have just moved to Ireland, spending money on upskilling however much you need it, may not be top priority for you.

We’ve both lived overseas. We’ve experienced first hand how challenging it can be and know the importance of developing both language and communication skills in the country you’ve moved to. As a small part of our commitment, we allocate one free place on every public workshop we run to help you integrate and engage more fully.

Ireland is a great and exciting place to live and work, especially when you have a good command of English which is still the common language between people of different nationalities.

How can someone apply?  There are two easy ways. The first way is to submit a suggestion on our Facebook page of what kind of workshop would be the most useful.  Maybe you need Presentation Skills, help with Networking, Business Language for Sales.  Perhaps Stress Management or Interview Skills.  Perhaps there’s something we can do that is not listed on our website you’re your suggestion will help us to keep our service relevant.  The second way is to email us directly with the subject line ‘free workshop application’, giving us your contact details, a little bit about yourself and your suggestion for a workshop you need.  We’d love to hear your suggestions.


Driving lasting change through training innovation

Click for details of our next Public Workshop 



Radio Time – In our Own Words


Much More Than Words: ‘In Our Own Words’

We talk about MMTW on Dublin South FM 93.9

With Padraic Marren  on ‘The Business Eye’

Preparing for Interviews – Yes, we train people in this area too!


mmtw services