The Republic of Costa Rica is a small country located in Central America. It is bordered to the north by Nicaragua, to the south by Panama, and it is bathed by the Atlantic and Pacific oceans to the East and West respectively. Costa Rica is widely known for its pacifist tradition and democracy, along with its rich and exotic landscapes of mountains and beaches, that make tourism one of the most important industries in the country.
Its Spanish speaking population of 4.615.518 inhabitants is quite diverse. Especially in San José, the capital city, it is common to encounter people from all over the country. This diversity, along with the country´s level of education and good international relations, have made English and other languages very common in Costa Rica´s business world.
As a result of expanding their services in Europe, a large corporate Costa Rica-based company was faced with the challenge of providing their services to thousands of Italian customers in a rapidly-growing new market. Therefore, I and my colleague were asked to jump on a flight to San José, to train 20 customer service specialists to work directly with Italian speaking customers.
The challenge was to take this group of eager learners from a beginner to an intermediate level in 3 weeks of intensive training – a daunting task, considering that it normally takes months for a class to advance this much. This definitely required skilful time management and a lot of strategic and tailored planning.
As Cactus teachers, we approached this very ambitious goal with a carefully designed program that focused on their specific needs. We immediately recognized the need for a very strong language foundation, in terms of speaking, writing, reading and listening. Moreover, we constantly applied the relevant vocabulary used daily in their industry and in subjects they could relate to.
The students definitely stepped up to the challenge and did their part. Although it was really demanding to meet such a challenging target in a such a short time, students attended the course with enthusiasm and they thoroughly enjoyed it. After an intensive 8-hour daily training program, they were successfully tested and certified at Intermediate level. As a teacher, I found this experience amazing and incredibly rewarding, and I am really glad to have taken part in this exciting opportunity made possible by Cactus. Nowadays, constantly evolving business environments require adaptability, efficiency and accuracy: our own success story proves that Cactus incorporates all these skills into its language training.
Cactus is one of the world’s leading providers of tailor-made language training, providing general, business and industry-specific language courses in over 50 countries and in over 30 languages worldwide. All forms are training are provided, including 1:1, in-company, public group courses, immersion courses abroad and online courses.