In my experience with learning English, it is a very easy language to learn and to master, but sometimes our main language doesn’t make it easy for us to get the accent right. Most people I know who learned English after their 15th birthday, all have an accent.
Does having an accent, make you not worth the time to be listened to? Does it mean you don’t have interesting things to talk about? Of course not. I’ve had a lot of interesting conversations ,in English, with people who don’t really speak English.
Who needs to do the extra work then?
The one learning the language and trying to express their ideas or the one with perfect English and wishing they could understand what’s being said?
I think both. Those of us who are learning needs not to try and get rid of our accents because we probably won’t be able to (and it’s what makes us, us) but we need to try and do a lot of work so that we can explain our ideas and have meaningful conversations, and for those with English as their primary language (they need to do a lot more work), they need to be able to extend some grace and be patient with us, they need not to assume what we mean by what we are saying, but ask us questions to fully understand what we actually mean, they need to applaud the courage of those trying to excel in an other language, they should be willing to extend their hand further more, after all, it’s their language!