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How do you verify that a prospective employee is bilingual?

you hired a bilingual employee who's not bilingual??

Hiring is tough, takes time, and is expensive. Add the qualification of “bilingual”, and the job just got even tougher. How do you verify that a job candidate is actually fluent in two languages if you are not bilingual?  Brittany saw this issue first hand and set out to solve it with technology.

Who is the entrepreneur?

Brittany is the founder of Lingo Qualifier. That’s all we know about her from this elevator pitch that Brittany practiced at Pitch Practice, except for the story she told. It’s that story that gives us context for the problem and lets us know that Brittany has experienced the problem at her workplace.

What is the problem?

Brittany’s boss hired someone who said they were bilingual in English and Spanish. After being hired, the company learned that she was not, in fact, bilingual. If you’ve ever hired anyone, much less a candidate with a special qualification like being bilingual, you know it’s time consuming and expensive. Also, once you make that hire and the candidate accepts the job, mentally, you’ve moved on. Now you have to start all over. Brittany told a short story to completely illustrate the problem. Well done.

What is the solution?

Brittany said in her pitch she wants to design an app to solve this problem. That’s fine, if an app is the right solution. Refer to Lean Startup methodology, and remember that we should “fall in love with our customers not our solutions.” What that means is don’t build an app because you think that’s the solution. Build whatever will solve the problem.

Who is the customer?

This piece is abundantly clear, again from the simple story she told. The customer is hiring managers at companies who hire bilingual employees. She could (and probably should) get much more specific with this target customer to narrow the initial audience down to those who hire lots of bilingual employees who speak different languages (as opposed to just English & Spanish), because those hiring managers have an even harder time. Very few people are bilingual, and far, far fewer speak more than two languages.

What is the ask?

Brittany asked for a “seed funder”, but she wasn’t sure. This ask tells us that she hasn’t done a lot of research into how big the problem is nor into how to solve the problem. When you ask for money, you need to know exactly how much you need and exactly how you’re going to spend it. Until you know those two things, don’t try to raise money. Instead, ask for something that you need today to help you get to the next step, whatever that step is.

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