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Advice for Incoming Intern with Speech Impediment

Editor’s note: Here’s a submission from the mailbag. If you have trouble posting your Open Item, send us a message at [email protected].

Hi GC,

Since accepting an audit internship in October, I’ve been reading through your many internship articles to prepare for the big day! My concern is a little different than most, as I’m worried that my speech impediment will negatively impact my internship experience. I have a stutter and it’s difficult for me to finish a sentence without stammering or blocking – resulting in some confused faces or awkwardly-long smiles while I struggle to finish a word. I’m asking for advice on how to talk with clients, socialize at lunch, and generally converse with coworkers and clients. I’m usually very short and precise in what I say and do not do well with small talk. Any advice?

Thank you!