It’s great to see so many people involved in NGK’s English program this year, and this is the first part of that English program, the mindset session. I’m Paul Durant, your coach for the mindset training. Before we start let’s look at some of the topics we’ll be talking about in the mindset training.
There are 6 videos in the mindset training and each will focus on a different aspect of mindset. Today we’ll get started with some ideas to help motivate and inspire you to keep going through your English training and keep studying for the rest of your career.
In video 2 we’ll talk about taking a step AHEAD. In this segment we talk about strategies to help you succeed in the English classes and get the most out of each class
In Video 3 we discuss how to check your level right now and think about where you want to go with your English, as well as how you can use it.
In video 4 we talk about how to achieve your goals and we’ll introduce a great strategy for success – the five P’s.
In video 5 we’ll talk about tools you’ll need to keep a conversation going, and how to speak when you feel nervous!
And in Video 6 we’ll go over some learning and study strategies and tips that should make your study more fun and more successful.
Today we’re going to talk about how to prepare yourself for success in the program and certainly in your career at NGK. So let’s get started. – Do you know who Henry Ford was?
Well maybe some of you do, but for those who don’t know him, Henry Ford was an American automaker. But he was more than that. Henry Ford invented the assembly line system for making new cars. His Innovation led to much of the automation that we see today in many companies, including NGK. Why is that important?
Well, Henry Ford had a different perspective – a different way of looking at things. A different way of thinking about things. He didn’t always have the right answer or perfect solution. He tried a lot of things that didn’t work!
One of his most famous quotes was “the only real mistake is the one from which we learn nothing. That way of thinking is important for the English program and for the mindset training too. Why? because making mistakes is part of life when you’re studying English, or any foreign language. You can’t speak English without making mistakes, just like you can’t have a huge successful business without making mistakes. If you learn from those mistakes then you can develop your language skills.
Some people think that they study hard enough they won’t have to make mistakes, but that’s just not true. Language learning, like most things, is about study and practice. Actually the only way to learn a language is to make mistakes. Use those mistakes to develop your skill. Don’t worry it doesn’t happen overnight! It takes time and you might make the same mistakes over and over.
But when you get tired of making mistakes or when you feel embarrassed about those mistakes remember what the famous Psychologist BF Skinner said: “The real mistake is to stop trying.” BF Skinner was a psychologist who studied a lot about language learning and other psychological elements of behavior. I think that his quote, “the real mistake is to stop trying,” is also really important for English students. Many people stop trying to do difficult things when they start to make mistakes.
But, if you stop trying you can never improve. You’ll never get better. Maybe it’s tough to keep going. Maybe you lose your confidence sometimes. But the difference between the person who can speak English well and the person who won’t try is the capability to make mistakes, and the willingness to make mistakes. Making mistakes is part of the learning experience.You got to keep pushing through. You got to build your skill and your confidence as you go.
So remember, the real mistake is to stop trying. and I believe that just trying to do something is success. Think about the difficult things that you’ve tried to do in your life. I’m sure everybody has had a few of those experiences already, and you’ll have many more as life goes on and as your career goes on. But think about the ones you’ve already faced. Sure it was scary. Sure it was challenging. And maybe there were times we thought you couldn’t do it.
But you kept going. You kept trying. because just trying made you feel good. Just trying was the most important thing. So remember when you face challenges, trying is succeeding. Trying is the most important thing
Now let’s talk about English. I bet you some of you have tried to speak English. Well if you’ve gone through the school system in Japan, you’ve all tried to speak English at some point. because you’ve all studied English in junior high and high school and maybe beyond that. But maybe it was tough. Maybe you didn’t learn as much as you wanted, or didn’t get the grades you hoped for. Maybe in school you started to think you couldn’t speak English. But I’ll tell you what. If you can say “hello” you can speak English! It’s that simple? Well yes actually. “Hello” is an English word.
But I know there are a lot more English words that you have learned through the years. You just need to practice them. But “hello” begins the conversation. “Hello” starts the connection with other people. So that’s why it’s important to remember that if you can say hello you can speak English!
But what comes after hello? Well conversation is like playing catch. You’ve probably heard that before. First you have to catch the ball. What is catching the ball? Catching the ball is understanding and answering someone’s question. It is giving information to the other person. That’s catching the ball. That’s not too difficult, but you’ve also got to remember to throw the ball!
Throwing the ball is asking a question. That’s the only way to keep the conversation going. Questions keep the conversation alive. So remember to throw the ball. Ask those questions, because if you don’t throw the ball you might drop the ball! What does it mean to drop the ball? Dropping the ball in a conversation means the conversation stops. Nobody talks. You’ve lost the opportunity to learn more about someone and to tell someone about yourself, So don’t drop the ball. Keep the ball going. Remember: catch the ball, throw the ball, catch the ball, throw the ball. Don’t worry about if your question is a clever or smart question or if it shows you are a good speaker. Any question will do to keep the conversation going. In fact, the best questions come from listening to what the other person says. That is called active listening. If you listen closely you’ll naturally have some questions. The same will be true of your counterpart. And hopefully they’ll remember to ask questions too!
So now I want you to think about the kinds of questions that you may ask in a conversation. What would you like to know about someone else? What do you think is important to learn about a colleague to make a strong relationship? There are a lot of ways you already know to start and continue conversations.
Now, think about five questions that you’d like to ask a colleague at NGK who you don’t know. There are a lot of possibilities but when the question is more specific you can learn more about the person.
Everyone should have a notebook for this mindset training so, when you’ve thought about your five questions, write them down in your notebook. Think about these questions. Are there any follow up questions you can ask? Follow up questions are even more specific to get more detail or information. If you can think of some follow-up questions write them down too. Practice thinking about questions and topics for conversation. When we start class you’ll probably have the opportunity to use those five questions!
So when you attend your virtual classes remember to keep those conversations going! Catch the ball, throw the ball and don’t drop the ball! Through the course of this English study that’s going to be a key skill to master. Keeping that conversation alive! In this mindset program we’re going to get into some more detail about how to do that and we’re also going to get into some details about how to study better and manage your own progress in English.
You might get some great skills and ideas on how to manage your career or other challenges that you will face in life. Remember in English and everything else, the only way to do it is to do it! So let’s get started right away.