FIRST IMPRESSIONS STILL matter, particularly those first few seconds of meeting someone. 2006 research from Princeton psychologists suggest it’s even less, with an impression forming of a stranger from their face, in the blink of an eye.
Another aspect of that impression is voice, and a British-Irish dialect quiz that the New York Times ran earlier this year underpinned just how connected an accent is to its geographical location.
A recent survey of UK accents showed that accent bias still exists and some still face negative bias. However, the new research also showed that, in a professional setting, lawyers who were hiring trainees had a heightened awareness of the need to be fair, and were able to switch off the biases and recognise competence in interviewee responses.
Keeping this in mind, we are asking Fora readers this week: Do you think your accent has affected your career opportunities?