Languages can Open the Door into Worldly Markets
Our world is becoming smaller every single day. A message that once took weeks to deliver now takes seconds. People are traveling now more than ever before and because of this many are learning a second, third, and even fourth language! Learning different languages allows one to speak to others in their native tongue, which in turn paves the way for stronger connections. Notably, this concept is relevant to both the individual and businesses alike.
English: The Global Business Language
English is undoubtedly the global business language. Children from China to Colombia are taught that knowing English will get them far in life. However, in most cases, English is viewed as a necessity and not necessarily an option. Children NEED to know English in order to get far in life, but what about Spanish, French, or even the most spoken language in the world–Mandarin?
Language Learning in the US
It is common to hear US high school and college students who have taken Spanish and French classes for years not know much besides a few simple phrases and numbers and quite frankly, this is unacceptable. In a world where our counterparts speak Mandarin, English, and often a third language fluently, it’s time the US do the same.
Employees who know two, three or more languages are extremely valuable to a company. These individuals can cross the cultural and language barrier far more effectively than an employee who relies on the global language of English. In fact, many countries require a level of trust before even bringing a business discussion to the table. China is one of these countries. Having the ability to speak to a potential client or business partner in their native language undoubtedly creates a small opening of trust, and thus allows businesses to engage in business discussions with people from other nations.
As the late Nelson Mandela once said,”If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.”