I am a Greek professional person in the Uk. As part of my work I need to talk to strangers to create prospects and leads. I find it very difficult because I think that people are more likely to reject me (or not approve me) than a local person because they will know I am a foreigner. As much as I hate it and I know it's not right, it is a problem for me and it restricts my work. I think it is pshychological (perhaps stemming from past experience) but I cannot overcome it. Any suggestions please?

Welcome Demetris. I'm sorry to learn that you are finding it difficult to speak to strangers here in the UK. Maybe it would help you to remember that almost everybody in the UK today who call themselves British is descended from a "foreigner" of some sort, from all the invasions we have had! Vikings, Romans, French, Danes.

If you do feel self-concious, British people can often be won over by a joke about yourself. Maybe you could try comparing yourself to Stelios Haji-Ioannou (founder of easy jet) or something like that.

probably the most important thing is to know that you are doing a good job, and have something to say to people. You need confidence in yourself.

It would be naive to say that no one will ever reject you just because you are 'foreign'. But please remember that this sort of person is very much in a minority.

The main issue is whether or not people can understand you when you speak, as if your accent is very difficult for a British person to follow, they are more likely to use someone else just to avoid the hassle.

An accent in itself should not be too much of a problem - or do you find that there are misunderstandings and gaps in your conversations? If so, you need to lose some of your accent or find out where your particular problems lie - get a nice but honest Brit to point these things out to you. Professional elocution lessons will reduce an accent and might be worth it to boost your confidence, but are not essential. Let your British friends know that you don't mind if they correct your pronounciation and phrases.

If you are not having problems communicating but merely have an accent, I doubt this is putting people off and you need to build your confidence. As Abbie said, Brits are descended from assorted races, we live in a highly integrated multi-cultural country, and we are used to dealing with accents as our own native accents vary wildly. It can be quite tricky for one Brit to understand someone from elsewhere in the UK, so dealing with an accent is commonplace for us.
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"An accent in itself should not be too much of a problem "

Then why do many English people say that they have problem with Scottish accents
i guess if you speak in the correct grammer no one will look down upon you.. on the other hand they will be quiet impressed
confidence is the key ! yep
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All in good time Constantine. Remember you are one up on most British people they only speak one language. Enjoy being who you are and everyone or most will accept you. Go on going on.
the problem with the sottish accent is that they speak very quickly and people dont listen properly.

i have no problem with scottish accents.

as to being rejected demetris, there is one thing you must remember about the british...

we can smell your fear!

but seriously, no matter what the accent, if your nervous then we can tell, and we dont like nervous people, it makes us nervous, and we dont like being nervous.

just be confident and if they have a problem with your accent then in my opinion *** em!!
there are so many accents in england i would be suprised that people would be annoyed by your accent. just dont let em get to you
You have to be proud of yourself because not every british person can speac greece language even with the accent
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