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That vital question you ask yourself whenever you need to update the executive team…

"Will the data speak for itself?” 

You can build a state-of-the-art model that will increase sales. You can uncover vital insights about customer turnover. You can create stunning visualizations. But data will never speak for itself. Which means....

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You Must Speak for Your Data

Everyday data professionals uncover helpful insights. But they often confuse managers by over-explaining their work. 

 

….Or worse yet, have executives tell them that they “don’t agree” with the data.  

 

So think about it….can you really confidently communicate in English with diverse stakeholders?

 

And even if your current role is largely technical, you still must be able to clearly discuss your expertise during interviews. 

 

Because as you know data scientists were once labeled “the sexiest job of the 21st century.” 

 

So the global talent pool? It’s expanding. Fast. 

 

The most successful individuals combine world-class technical abilities with great communication skills. 

 

And those who don’t? They get left behind. 

 

So if you know you could communicate more effectively in English during interviews, meetings, and presentations. But you aren’t sure how to break through your current level… 

 

… then what follows could be a turning point in your career. 

 

It could be THE pivotal moment in your transformation into the type of data professional who is able to drive change through a combination of great technical and communication skills.

"The storytelling program was amazing to improve my English speaking skills..."

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The Data-Business Gap

It’s 10 am on a Tuesday. It’s your turn to share your screen. You’ve been tasked with updating your colleagues on an important forecasting project. This project could help your business save a lot of money.  

 

Your heart starts to beat faster. Your leg starts to shake. Your face is a bit red.  

 

You’ve spent the last 2 months working on this project. And 2 days preparing this presentation. You’re really proud of your work.

 

You begin with all the relevant background details. You discuss the importance of data quality. You introduce your forecasts. You even mention how other departments will be able to use these models.

 

Boom!! A key business problem is solved. Until..

 

…a skeptical executive questions the return on investment. 

 

This makes you say to yourself….

 

“I thought I just explained that…” 

 

So you attempt to explain that investing in quality data will lead to quality forecasts. But skepticism remains.

 

You're nervous. You try again. And again. At this point, you’re just repeating yourself. 

 

 Maybe, they just don’t see the value in your project or…

 

…maybe the project isn’t the ideal solution to the problem. 

 

This interaction reminds you of an article you read on LinkedIn 2 weeks ago. 

 

It was titled: “Why 85% of data analytics projects fail” 

 

The key lesson? There’s often a pretty big gap between data teams and business teams. 

Now you’re certain. The data-business gap? It's real. 

But you’re an analytical individual. You’re paid because of your technical, programming, and statistics skills.

 

You get it—communication skills are important. 

 

However, you’re busy. You work 9-hour days on multiple projects. You still find time to learn new technical skills on Coursera.  Maybe the business team should develop data literacy so they understand you. 

 

But if you can't effectively communicate the business impact of your work…it doesn’t matter how good your technical solutions are. 

 

The best projects?

 

….will be given to colleagues. 

 

The best clients?

 

… will work with others. 

 

The best jobs?

 

… will go to those who demonstrate excellent communication skills in interviews. 

With all of those technical skills, isn’t it time to truly make a difference? 

You deserve to have your insights valued. 

 

You deserve to have all of those “data-driven executives” actually listen to the data.  

 

You deserve the opportunity to bring value to new organizations. 

 

And let’s be clear….

 

You’re not trying to give TED Talks in English. 

 

You just want to speak the "same language"  as business stakeholders

 

So you can…

 

…finally get buy-in from that skeptical marketing manager

…present insights that create buzz amongst your coworkers

 

…offer recommendations that a data-driven CEO simply cannot ignore 

 

…and open Gmail and see “Congrats - We can’t wait for you to join the team!” after interviewing for your dream job.   

 

You can make that a reality. 

But first we need to discuss...

The Stories You Tell Yourself...

Story #1

When it comes to communication? You're not a "natural."

Every few weeks you watch one of your bosses give a great presentation. Or easily explain how an algorithm works to a fellow manager. 

 

You’re always impressed. It seems so easy for her. 

 

When it comes to communication? She’s a natural. 

 

…Except, she’s not. 

 

Because there’s no such thing as “naturals.” 

 

We’re not born with skills. We learn them.  

 

Did you wake up one day knowing how to write that perfect SQL query? Or visualize your data using R?  

 

No.

 

You learned new techniques to clean data efficiently. You asked for advice on how to make your forecasts more accurate. You practiced. You experimented. You continuously improved.

 

And now when you apply your technical skills? It seems effortless. You’re a “natural” 

 

And your boss? 

 

She learned techniques for how to communicate with skeptical stakeholders.  She asked for advice on how to answer those tough questions about her data. She practiced. She experimented. She continuously improved.

 

And now when she applies her communication skills? It seems effortless. She’s a “natural” 

 

But if your boss became an effective communicator through learning and practice…

 

…that means you can too.  

 

Of course, you might learn a bit differently than her. You might make more mistakes.   You may need more practice. It could take longer. 

 

And that’s okay. 

 

But if you’re motivated to learn communication skills, you can. 

 

The first step? Understand what to learn.

Story #2

You need to improve your accent or vocabulary.

 

You’re probably pretty comfortable speaking English in casual settings. 

 

Chatting with your foreign friends? No problem. 

 

Using English when traveling? Easy. 

 

And this shows how much you’ve invested learning this vital skill.   

 

But it’s different at work.

 

And that’s understandable. Data concepts are challenging to explain in your first language.

 

Doing so in English? That can feel impossible.  

 

So what do you do after your call with a FAANG recruiter doesn’t go well? 

 

You think about registering for classes with Wall Street English so you can…

 

…get that “classic” American accent 

…avoid those embarrassing grammar mistakes. 

 

…and learn new vocabulary that will impress all of your foreign clients.  

 

But before you join those general classes ask yourself…  

 

Will a native accent really help you summarize the KPIs on your Tableau dashboard? 

 

Is a wide vocabulary going to convince managers to invest in data quality?

 

It might help a little, but think about it this way… 

 

Technical individuals from the United States are often stereotyped as “geeks” who lack communication skills. 

 

Even with their wide vocabulary and native accent.  

 

So if you really want to confidently present the business impact of your data in English…

 

Focus on communication skills first. 

 

Then fill in your language gaps.

Story #3

The next thing on your “to learn” list should always be a new technical skill

Your days are filled with meetings. Cleaning data. Performing exploratory data analysis. And maintaining the model you deployed earlier this year.  

 

But you’re keenly aware there is always a new skill you could develop.   

 

Therefore you’re always learning new technical skills.

 

And that’s a good thing. 

 

You should…

 

…get that AWS Certificate

 

…learn about NLP on Coursera

…and read books on visualizations using Python. 

 

Upskill. Diversify. Ensure your technical background remains your strength.  

 

But if the next thing on your “to learn” list is always a new technical skill...

 

...then you’re missing half of the equation. Because...

 "Success is determined by the quality of your ideas and how well you communicate them.” 

 

Imagine two data scientists competing for a job. Candidate A has all the required tech skills. 

 

Candidate B is missing some technical knowledge but has excellent communication skills. 

 

Who do you think will get the job? 

 

Many technical managers will choose Candidate B. 

Why? 

…because they believe “it's easier to teach tech skills than soft skills.”  

That means you need to take initiative. You must learn the best practices so that you can continually improve your communication skills. 

Because when it comes down to it, communication skills can help you overcome a lack of certain technical skills. 

 

But technical skills probably won’t help you overcome poor communication skills. 

Here’s how you can finally break through your current English level

In order to make communication skills your strength, you must master…

 

“What you say” and “How you say it”

 

Traditional language learning focuses on “what you say.” This is your grammar, vocabulary, and accent. 

 

As for the “how?” 

 

Well…That’s rarely addressed. 

 

This is a problem because how you frame and present your ideas matters. 

 

This is what makes great communicators seem so “natural.” No matter the situation, they excel. 

 

It is also why there are millions of native English speakers who have really poor communication skills. 

 

They certainly know “what to say”...

 

...they just don’t know “how to say it.” 

 

Fortunately, you can Focus on Frameworks. This means learning “how” to communicate effectively. 

 

You break down your communication into unique situations.

 

You learn how to frame and present your ideas for maximum impact. 

 

You ensure you always communicate in a clear, brain-friendly way. 

 

Then you fill in language gaps as needed.

 

When you Focus on Frameworks you can…

 

…provide clear 60-second updates during meetings that executives love.  

 

…transform data into an engaging story that your colleagues remember.    

 

…give a presentation where the sales team actually listens to your recommendation.  

 

…ask stakeholders thought-provoking questions that help you design the perfect solution. 

 

…and quietly walk into an interview confident that your communication skills are better than your competition.  

 

Best of all? 

 

It makes your communication skills cumulative. They build on one another. 

 

You can learn a new framework today. And apply it tomorrow.

 

 Then continue to master it throughout your career. 

 

Eventually, you’ll be able to combine frameworks confidently.

 

And when it comes to both your technical and communication skills?

 

You’ll be viewed as a “natural”.

I was surprised and happy to discover that becoming a great speaker is a skill that you can learn and it's not something that is “natural” that can’t be taught. I realized you can actually learn how to add “sparkle” to your speech.

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You’ve taken plenty of English classes. During class you practice new vocabulary. You learn a grammar point. You try to adjust you accent to sound “native.” Your teacher gives you feedback. Then you practice during a conversation. 

 

You know these classes. It’s a “general” English lesson. 

 

Over the last 10 years I have taught over 2,500 students, across 5 continents, for 6 different schools and companies. Whether I was working with a student in Korea or a partner at Ernst and Young Mexico, a lot of these were “general” English classes.

 

I started my school, Accents Welcome, in 2019 because I wanted to move beyond the “general approach” to learning English. 

 

I decided to do something different. To help students improve their English AND their communication skills. 

 

I wanted…

 

…speakers to keep their accent and still be understood…hence Accents Welcome : )

 

…clients to learn “how to communicate” using brain-friendly frameworks 

 

…and to create lessons that were specific to the unique needs of individuals. 

 

So I made a negotiation lesson for a lawyer. I taught a sales class to software representatives.

 

Then I taught a storytelling class to Walkens, a data scientist from France. 

 

I was immediately hooked. I quickly realized that data professionals face some very unique communication challenges. And I knew frameworks, like storytelling, could help them overcome these obstacles.   

 

Since then, I’ve only worked with professionals just like you. 

 

They are data scientists, data analysts, business analysts and data engineers across the world. From Taiwan to Spain. Mexico to Saudi Arabia.  

My clients have worked at companies such as Facebook, IBM, Ernst & Young, Boston Consulting Group, Tiktok, Tesla, HP, Capgemini and British Airways.

 

Some are searching for new jobs. Others want to do their current work better.   

 

I’ve moved from teaching those “general” English lessons to classes that are tailored to the unique needs of each individual. 

 

My favorite part of working with such a talented niche?

 

I become a better teacher every day. 

 

I help my clients address their weaknesses. But I also learn from their strengths. 

 

So I can share it with you. 

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David Gates  M.Ed.

An English Coach for data professionals

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It was such a great experience. I did not expect a course so adapted and personalized to my requirements. Definitely, David's advice and feedback have been very useful for me to build confidence in my daily work.

 
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“...with David's storytelling techniques, I could finally organize the chaos in my mind and use a clear structure to prepare presentations.”
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