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  • Steve Whalen

English Classes Return Online with Zoom

Updated: May 11

Before the outbreak of Covid-19, CRG had begun a program of free English classes for our employees who are interested in working on their fluency.


Boston is blessed to be multicultural with a significant portion of the city being recent immigrants. One mantra I follow is "diversity is strength". I don't know who coined this phrase but I believe in it. Our workforce at City Realty Group is very diverse and is a point of pride for the team. It is not uncommon to hear many different languages being spoken both in the office and on work sites. Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, Indonesian Nepali, Armenian, Russian, Haitian Creole, Albanian and of course English are some of the languages that our team members use. I am fascinated by different cultures and love the interchange


Some of our teammates struggle with English. These individuals are able to do their jobs but often require a team member who can translate instructions to them. This sometimes leads to misunderstanding of direction and the team doesn't fully benefit from their feedback. We work around this, but I have been pondering this issue for a while.


Every year in late December I try to take some time to look at our company from the proverbial “40,000 feet”. One item that I think about is our employee experience and showing employees that we value them. Prior to the current stay at home advisories, our company would host an employee lunch every two weeks. We’d encourage everyone to take a break and talk amongst themselves while enjoying good food from a country of origin of one of the employees. I see these lunches as a time to strengthen bonds and encourage dialogue. This year I was focused on finding an approach to language and assisting our team in better communication.


Before the outbreak of Covid-19, CRG had begun a program of free English classes for our employees who are interested in working on their fluency. Unforunately, we had to halt the meetings due to the public health crisis.

However, with the help of teacher Norky Vasquez, we were able to bring back the English classes virtually. Last Friday we hosted our first virtual meeting, and we are looking forward to continuing the classes as a way for our employees to still have this free learning oppurtunity while at home.

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