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Google tutors and janitors build relationships

October 26, 2012

SAN JOSE, CA — Yani Lopez, a Googleplex janitor for the past seven years, can now speak English better than ever before, according to the Mercury News.

google tutorFor the past year and a half, Lopez and Ben Lindahl, a 29-year-old Google software engineer, have met for an hour a week to work on her English and allow Lindahl to brush up on this Spanish, the article stated.

According to the article, the tutoring sessions have given Lopez the knowledge she needs to talk with her doctor and to people at her daughter's school, and the confidence to no longer avoid eye contact with people on the Google campus, now giving directions with poise.

Communication When English Is Not A Native Tongue

The tutoring has been a two-way street, as Lopez, who works all night then naps before volunteering at her daughter's school, has taught Lindahl plenty, the article noted.

"I have learned how difficult it can be to not be able to communicate with the world around you, especially if your daughter is living in that world," said Lindahl.

The original idea was to better prepare Silicon Valley janitors to work with those who work in the buildings they clean in order to position themselves to move up the career ladder or move on to better careers, the article added.

Click here to read the article in its entirety.