How Learning Languages Benefits your Business (even though everyone speaks English)
by Teva Serna
It’s a well-known fact that English is the international language of the world, and the official language of business for all international markets. Managers and directors across sectors know and use English, not only because they are expected to, but because English is often a prerequisite to secure a promotion or opportunity within their organisation. So, with everyone speaking English so well, why would any English-speaking business need to invest in language training? At Cactus we know that learning languages benefits businesses – find out how.
It’s all about perspective. It is true that under normal circumstances two professionals will automatically communicate in English, if they don’t share the same first language. However, this does not mean that the meeting will have a successful outcome. While there may be numerous factors that negatively affect the outcome of any meeting, the language spoken – or the absence of language skills – is a common one. A recent study highlighted that the UK is losing £48 billion every year in missed opportunities due to the lack of language skills in its workforce.
Don’t get Lost in Translation
Although English is the most learned language in the world, the reality is more complex. Not every English learner will reach a fluent level, and even those who do will still generally favour their own language. And this is key when selling or negotiating. By using the client’s first language, you are reinforcing your message and demonstrating respect, thus increasing your chances of success.
Non-native English-speakers also often find native English speakers the hardest to understand. Very often, monolingual English speakers also lack the cultural awareness skills necessary to convince their international clients, and do not adapt their way of speaking when communicating with foreign partners. Because they have never experienced first-hand the difficulties that may arise when communicating in a new language, monolingual speakers generally do not develop clearer ways to express and communicate their ideas and messages.
How will Allocating a Budget for Language Training Benefit my Business?
Offering your employees language lessons is a long-term investment that will improve your organisation’s reputation in international markets, reinforce trust and respect between you and your foreign clients, and avoid communication issues that often result in negative outcomes. Learning new languages benefits businesses wishing to expand their international trade in a number of ways:
✅ Invaluable insights into both B2B and B2C behaviours that will inform your negotiation techniques and marketing strategies
✅ Understanding of management and communication styles, values and attitudes, that will help you win business
✅ Practical strategies for overcoming the challenges particular to conducting business in other markets, leading to effective and successful outcomes
✅ Reduces costly errors by avoiding misunderstandings and miscommunication between employees from different countries
✅ Assists your compliance with local regulations and standards
✅ Supports the tailoring of your offer to the needs of your target market
Increase Your Profits, Invest in Language Training
At Cactus Language Training, we provide fully comprehensive language training solutions. From assessing your language training needs to ensure that the solution we offer matches your requirements, to evaluating the progress your employees make by the end of each course. We constantly report on the return of your language training investment. Our solutions include:
✅ Cross-cultural training, to develop cultural awareness skills
✅ Pronunciation and elocution lessons, to ensure your business pitch reaches out your foreign partners
✅ Blended learning solutions including online activities, webinars and virtual classrooms
To receive more information about how Cactus Language Training can increase your profits, or to get a quote, simply call us or contact us with any questions you may have. Cactus also offers a free no obligation language consultation for corporations and individuals.
Cactus language offers the following types of language courses:
Evening language courses: 19 different languages in 15 UK locations
Language holidays: worldwide immersion courses in the country of the language
Private tuition: tailor-made and corporate language training solutions throughout the world
TEFL: teacher training courses for both English and other languages all over the world
Online courses: for teacher training, English and French