Read this Blinkit’s software engineer’s story on breaking the “Poor Soft Skills” stereotype of Indian tech talent

Created :
April 3, 2023
|Updated :
April 3, 2023
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“When you have to grow further in your career, improving communication skills is not a choice - it’s a need.”

If this statement sounds familiar, pause and ponder for a minute.

You might have heard it many times, maybe several times each day, by your subconscious. Sometimes it would scream at you while at other times sarcastically smile when it sees you shy and silent, even when situations demand you speak up, like presentations to CXOs or appraisal meetings.

Amit Mishra (Name changed) is no stranger to this provocation from his ego. During his 5+ years of experience as a senior software engineer, he has seen enough times how just coding without communicating his impact limits his career.

Today let's learn more of his story that highlights the "Can code, why learn to Communicate" mentality prevalent in the Indian tech ecosystem hurts many careers.

Amit currently works at Blinkit. Being a bright student, Amit earned both his bachelor's and Masters in Computer Science from I.I.T. B.H.U.

And just like any middle-class boy from India, Amit was pleased when he got a job at Blinkit - one of India's fastest-growing start-ups.

But, in just 10 months, Amit found himself struggling within the organization.

Why? Because Blinkit has a competitive work environment with enormous pressure from management and leadership. Hence, he was cautious not to make even minor mistakes, worrying that even a tiny oversight might cost him his job.

And this worry was not limited to making a coding error but also extended to his poor communication skills. Amit feared losing face and looking stupid in front of his seniors. After all, his seniors are responsible for his appraisal, so he would think twice before saying anything in front of them.

Personally, I was not surprised when I heard Amit’s story. At BBR English, I regularly see talented professionals with tremendous potential feeling insecure about their career growth due to lacking “Good English Communication skills.”

The management in a unicorn start-up like Blinkit is always short of time - they can’t be bothered with all the little details. He has to tell a story tying up together the problem, the solution, and what he and his team have achieved.

Amit realized that his communication challenge was holding him back hard - if he wanted to realize his dream of leading a team in system architecture, then he would need to improve his spoken English.

Please keep reading to learn how BBR English helped this IITian to grow in his career by elevating his English communication gap.

Why Amit Struggled With Spoken English? 🤔

Like I said above - Amit's struggle with English is not unique. I have seen this story play out so many times in my career - a talented middle-class boy dreams of making it big gets into a prestigious college, secures a good job, but then struggles to grow in his career.

Why? The answer is always Poor English Communication Skills!

Let me be honest; I don't think this is entirely Amit's fault. It's not like he didn't try to improve his spoken English. But, when you grew up in the small district of Lakhimpur in Uttar Pradesh - studying in English medium is a luxury that not even the rich can afford, much less a middle-class boy. So, unsurprisingly, Amit studied in Hindi medium till 10th Grade.

And when you study in Hindi medium for all of your childhood - Hindi becomes the language of your brain. Your mind's thought process is trained to think in Hindi. So he always had to translate Hindi words into English before speaking. English just wouldn't come naturally to him.

This happened to Amit and thousands of my other students who didn't have the privilege to study in English medium schools.

After getting into IIT BHU, Amit realized his limitation of not being able to speak Good English. After all, IITs are entirely English medium. Also, he got exposed to students from all backgrounds, and he quickly realized the unfair advantage his English-speaking batchmates had over those who couldn’t. Internships, Jobs, Scholarships - all of them conducted their interviews in English.

So he decided to take the initiative - he loved reading, so he started reading newspapers and history books. He even applied to join his literary club - but he was rejected on the spot! This rejection didn’t help his confidence to speak in English.

Nonetheless, Amit’s coding skills were good, and he secured a job as a software engineer. And he has managed to thrive for 5 years in software engineering. But as he grew in his career, he realized that to move into leadership roles - his communication skills have to be just as good as his coding skills.

Amit wasn’t terrible at communication; in his assessment, he believed his English communication skills were OK. But, still, he struggled to think and speak in English.

Amit had an easy time bonding with his colleagues and juniors at his job. But, he used to hesitate around his seniors because he didn’t wanted to talk to them without English. He felt that if his seniors noticed his poor English communication, it would hurt his chances of moving into leadership positions. Let me repeat his own words:

“When you have to grow further in your career, improving communication skills is not a choice - it’s a need.”

Why Amit joined B.B.R. English?

Amit had realized that leadership roles like I.T. Team Leads need a strong command of Business English. Hence, he actively looked for communication courses.

His search first landed him at Cambly English speaking course. However, he discontinued it after 2 weeks and demanded a refund.

Why? According to Amit, Cambly lacked a proper structure.

After Cambly, Amit searched for independent mentors but quickly gave up - his busy schedule didn’t allow him to waste his precious minutes bumbling from teacher to teacher.

One day, while watching YouTube videos, he came across an ad for B.B.R. English. He was thrilled to find a solution that passed his 2 essential requirements::

  • A program with a structured curriculum
  • A personal mentor

Intrigued, Amit signed up for the foundation session. During his session, he learned 2 missing pieces of puzzle that was holding back his communication skills:

  1. He lacked non-verbal communication - eye contact, facial expression, gestures, and posture.
  2. His speech was monotonous, lacking voice modulation, tone, pace, and pitch.

He absolutely loved the first session because of the value he derived from the session.

Why? Because of the following three reasons:

  1. He was getting a personalised program
  2. He learned quick and actionable tips to improve his communication skills.
  3. He loved the calibration report he recieved after the session.

And in case you are wondering why Amit loved his calibration report, here is sneak peek for you.

Our calibration report goes into extensive details about various aspects of communication - verbal, non verbal and presentation.

From this report, Amit learned where he stood on different parameters and what exactly he can do to improve upon them.

But, our calibration report doesn’t stop at just identifying the mistakes and providing surface level recommendations.

It also provided a holisitc roadmap spread across ten 1:1 private lessons which ensured that he would 100% reach his communication goals.

At BBR English, we believe in value first, trust us later approach. That is why we provide a detailed calibration report for just Rs 499 - and if you are not satisfied we refund the entire amount with no questions asked.

Amit was 100% convinced that BBR English will help him break out of his Hindi medium bubble and help him master the Business English.

He started to believe that with the help of BBR English he can finally give a permanent farewell to his struggles:

  1. Low confidence while speaking in front of team members
  2. Challenges in impressing your Team and management because of poor presentations
  3. Inability to communicate effectively with senior management

With full energy and enthusiasm, Amit enrolled for our English for Technology and Product Leaders program.

Amit Mishra - After BBR English!

Amit today is a confident speaker - he is no longer hold back by limiting beliefs that he was from Hindi medium and can never communicate in English with confidence.

In his own words

“Yes it has helped immensely, I feel more confident now as now I am aware about the correct ways to communicate.”

Amit's transformation was fast but not immediate - growth takes time.

At BBR English, we provide only 1 Live Session per week for 60 minutes - but this one session would be better than taking group classes 5 days a week. This means you will find a 500% better experience in every session, just like Amit did.

In every session, Amit learned something new. His mentor Tanu would invite him to speak in prepared and impromptu discussions - so Amit could build confidence in his speaking skills. She patiently listened to his thoughts and then provided her feedback on his content and delivery.

When Amit began his course, he cited a regular complaint he gets - he is a fast speaker, so his audience finds it difficult to follow him. He was concerned about how he would lead a team of 15-20 people if they couldn't even understand his instructions. He was confused what he should improve - pace, pitch, or pauses.

Tanu emphasized that Amit's struggles come from his nervousness. She encouraged him to begin by focusing on topics he is confident to speak about, like his own introduction. And while speaking, Amit should be intentional about being slow and deliberate. Take away for Amit - Speak about topics he knows and pay attention to being slow.

Eventually, Tanu noticed an interesting characteristic of Amit - he is fluent and communicative about topics he is passionate about. This hinted to Tanu that Amit's lack of confidence stemmed from his limited exposure to a wider range of content that limited his vocabulary. Takeaway for Amit - read and watch more English content about topics outside of his main interests.

Once Amit started to win over his original challenges - pace and limited vocabulary, Tanu started to develop in Amit the other aspects of communication - voice modulation, body language, holding an extended conversation, generating new ideas, and speaking impromptu with confidence.

Amit started his program in August of 2022 and finished it in early October. During his short stay with BBR English, he showed a massive transformation! In fact, by the end of his program, this is what his Mentor Tanu had to say about him:

You are fluent, used advanced vocabulary. Your verbal and non verbal communication are in sync. You can speak at length without talking long pauses or using fillers. Your pace has come down from fast to a moderate one and you have started using your gestures more effectively.

At the end of the course, Amit Mishra was delighted to drop his positive experience on whatsapp. His kind words made our day, especially her mentor Tanu😍:

Just like Amit Mishra, do you, too, feel stuck in your career because of poor English communication? Are you not considered for leadership roles due to your poor soft skills?

And do you also lack confidence which results in delivering poor presentations to management?

Then, you, too, need a personal coach to guide you through this journey. A coach who identifies your strengths and weaknesses, someone who provides you with specific and detailed feedback on not just What but How to improve.

If you are motivated by Amit massive transformation from a shy to a self-confident speaker, then why don’t you too sign up for the foundation session at Rs. 499 ONLY. You will get the same quality calibration report with a 100% analysis of your strengths and weakness followed by a complete, step by step roadmap of Your Success!

PS, if you are dissatisfied (we promise you won’t), you will get a full refund, no questions asked!

So what are you waiting for - Start right now

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