❝The limits of my language are the limits of my world❞ once said Ludwig Wittgenstein, the great Austro-English philosopher. In business you need to push through your limitations and communicate with others all over the world, which is why a corporate language learning strategy is becoming more and more important. In research conducted by Tsedal Neeley on language in global organizations and Robert Kaplan on the leadership of global organizations, it has been reaffirmed that having a strong language strategy is paramount in global business and their management.
Four reasons for a corporate language learning strategy
English is often seen as the lingua franca of the corporate world and your business needs a concrete strategy to ensure employees can use it, and other languages, effectively to communicate and here is why:
#1 Increase confidence with languages
Your employees need to feel confident when working in whichever language they are using at that time. No-one wants to feel “childlike” when trying to communicate in a professional manner. Help them reach their potential by creating an effective corporate language learning environment.
#2 Global corporate language learning
We live in a globalized world; if employees cannot communicate efficiently and sensitively between countries and cultures the business will suffer. A language learning strategy is what drives how international teams interact as without an appropriate level of skills, communication can break down.
#3 Better communication skills via corporate language learning
You risk losing important contacts or connections if you do not invest in corporate language learning. You need to enable all employees to be able to communicate effectively, including equipping native speakers with the skills to speak clearly and with a level of vocabulary that non natives can understand. Otherwise you can unintentionally exclude others and damage what could have been a great business relationship.
#4 Choosing talent assisted by corporate language learning
You could misinterpret a lack of language knowledge as a lack of talent. If an employee has not been given the chance to improve their language skills, you might think that their miscommunications or mistakes are down to the fact that they do not have talent or skills in their role. This might not be the case; and if they had better opportunities to improve their language skills, they could shine in their role.
When you have an efficient corporate language learning system in place, you help your business to bloom as staff are confident, motivated and effective in their communication both internally and external to the company. Language limitations will not longer confine you, or leave you tongue-tied.
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