Professionally Speaking: Do You Sound the Part?

Interview

I did not get the job after mispronouncing the name of a prominent street in Cleveland Ohio. I believe the interviewer used this method to weed out people. He started the conversation talking about the name Carnegie (CARnegie.) The emphasis being on the first syllable. After talking about Andrew Carnegie, Carnegie-Mellon, and Carnegie Hall he asked me to say the street in Cleveland. All Clevelander pronounce the street with the emphasis on the second syllable (CarNEGie.) I failed the test by putting the emphasis on the first syllable. The interview ended in five minutes. I doubt that failure to provide a regional pronunciation cost me the job, I was just not the interviewer’s choice.

This interview, however, taught me the importance of knowing and using correct pronunciation. Mispronunciations will cause your listeners to critique your statements and question your expertise.

Use this resource to check your pronunciations: 100 Most Commonly Mispronounced Words

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