Being multilingual is a skill that benefits just about every industry. Whether you’re trying to get a new job or looking for ways to grow your current business, knowing how to speak more than one language can give you the edge over a monolingual competitor.
As the world becomes more connected through means of the internet and frequent travel, it’s growing increasingly more important to learn another language in business and in personal life.
Here are five of the top reasons being multilingual can benefit businesses:
1. Improved communication with foreign clients and employees
One of the biggest benefits is that it allows you to communicate with clients and partners around the world. Not only will this help expand your market share, but it can also help gain insight into what kinds of products or services your audiences want. For example, by learning French, you may be able to better serve current Canadian customers. It’s important to know the most important languages to learn for business, as this means you can learn a language that will benefit you in multiple ways.
As English is the global lingua franca, it can be assumed by different language speakers that they will have to speak English in order to communicate with you and your business. However, if you’re multilingual and speak the language of your foreign clients or employees, it shows that you’re willing to connect with them on a more personal level, and actually put in the effort when it comes to communicating with them.
2. Breaking down barriers between countries
Another benefit is that multilingualism helps break down communication barriers between two different countries or regions. This can lead to increased business collaboration, as it prevents any form of barrier from stopping any connection that might have been there in the past. Yes, using Google Translate can be helpful for brief meetings or unimportant business, but actually understanding the language and its culture is vital if you’re looking to make long-lasting connections in the business world.
It’s important to note that being multilingual has been linked numerous times with improving critical thinking skills as well as creativity, and that these traits have been known to help inspire new ideas on how to grow one’s business. Breaking down language barriers will help build on these new ideas, and create even bigger and brighter ideas in the future.
3. Increase in job opportunities
The more languages you speak, the stronger your resume becomes. As globalisation continues to make an impact around the world, it’s more important than ever for businesses to hire multilingual employees who can communicate with clients and partners everywhere.
When going for a job interview, it’s more likely that someone with multilingual talents will get the job, over someone that is monolingual. This is especially the case if the company is looking to expand into different countries soon, or if they are having particular trouble connecting with different language speakers.
As well as this, speaking more than one language helps create an international image that is sure to impress future employers. Understanding the world around you is a big bonus to employers, and knowing other languages shows that you care about other cultures.
Job opportunities will also be opened up around the world, rather than just in your home country, as jobs abroad will be instantly more accessible.
As remote work has become much more popular since 2020, companies all around the world have discovered that there is much less need for in-person office work 24/7. Using an internet connection, it’s now possible to connect with remote workers around the world, which not only benefits the employee, but benefits the company as there is less money needed to be spent on office space and other physical things that are necessary for in-person work.
4. Improved learning skills
It’s been shown that speaking more than one language improves memory and learning abilities. For example, bilingual children are often asked to translate back and forth between two different languages, this forces them to think critically about what they’re trying to say, which builds on their critical thinking skills.
Language learning also helps when it comes to building on our memory, as you are constantly being forced to remember and learn new things.
5. Maximised market share
Another benefit is that being multilingual helps maximise a company’s market share, especially if their product or service is aimed towards an international audience.
Knowing multiple languages can allow you to tap into niche markets that others may not have the ability to do. This could give your business access to new clients who want what you’re selling but don’t know how to ask for it in their native tongue.
By incorporating these benefits of multilingualism into your current business strategy, you’ll gain the upper hand over monolingual competitors while also creating opportunities for future growth within your industry. As globalisation continues, learning more than one language will become more and more vital to business success.
About the Author
Simon & Simon – The UK’s #1 provider of experienced language trainers for businesses, helping improve language skills for over 25 years.
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