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How Good Is Your Filipino Staff's English Skills? Take The Sesame Street-Batibot Test

By Edited Jan 7, 2016 0 0

Outsourcing your business can help your business in a lot of ways.  It allows your business to grow without having to work more.  Outsourcing also gives you more time.  More time to focus on the other aspects of your business and basically, more time to do anything else you want.

One of the best places to outsource is the Philippines.  That country is brimming with intelligent, skilled workers that you can hire for as low as $2 an hour.  When outsourcing to the Philippines, one of the first things you should look for in your Filipino employees is good English skills. You'll need Filipino employees that have good overall English comprehension, meaning can they speak, read, and write in English and do they understand what they're saying, reading, and writing.

You'd want your Filipino staff to have good English skills because it will help make your professional relationship with them a lot easier. And if you plan to hire Filipinos for customer service, you'd want to make sure that they have great English skills. How they'll interact with your clients would reflect on you and your business.

One clever trick I learned from one of my trips to the Philippines is to ask prospective employees what children's show they watched while they were growing up. Did they watch Sesame Street or Batibot?

Batibot is a popular kid's show in the Philippines. It's basically the Filipino Sesame Street and in fact, also produced by the Children's Television Workshop; the same people behind Sesame Street. Batibot is a good show however, in general, most kids who grew up watching B don't speak, read or write English as well as those who watched Sesame Street.

Why?  It's probably because those who watched Sesame Street were exposed to good English at a very young age. And once you expose them to English at an early age, the lessons stick and they find it easier to learn English.

However, there are exceptions to every rule. You still have to test your prospective employees with writing assignments or a live interview in order to really tell if they can  speak or write great English.  These tests will show you if they really havemastery over the language and they're hard to fake.  Giving these tests will require more work on your part but they'll help assure you that your prospective employee really has the skills he or she claims to have.

But, in general, this theory does work. I tested this theory  on my Filipino staff and asked them what show they watched while they were growing up. Those who had good English skills watched Sesame Street while those whose English were just ok watched Batibot.

This question shouldn't be the basis on whether you should hire an employee. In th end, you have to use your own judgement but I have to admit that it is still a good question to ask.

Sesame Street- Batibot Test

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