Ok, English Users, it's official.
English has now been designated as the global language of business. Now, we know what you're thinking.
Wasn't it that already? People who work in business should know some English. What's new about that?
Well, since you asked, what's new is that more and more multinational companies are making English their common corporate language. This means all international business is conducted in English.
This is already happening in companies like Airbus, Daimler-Chrysler, Fast Retailing, Nokia, Renault, Samsung, SAP, Technicolor, and Microsoft in Beijing, to provide a few examples. Did you notice that not all companies are American or British?
Because in the 21st century English is no longer just the language of English speaking countries. The bottom line is practicality. And guess what? The country that is at the forefront of this change is... China. One might wonder with the economic power that they have, why they aren't trying to push for more Chinese in business operations.
The answer is simple. Practicality. Just like the language of music is Italian; or Latin the language of biological and medical classification or French the language of cuisine. Today, now, in the 21st century, the language of business, logistics and technology is English. But what does this really mean?
For one, it ought to be a wake up call to all small or regional economies as well as companies from those countries that wish to expand globally. The message is simple. If you want to do business, move things around or be technologically connected with the rest of the world, you and all your staff need to do it in English.
But fortunately, at PLS, we have a number of effective and attractive training methods, including the Dynamic Online Training method from our partners at English Attack! that we spoke about in our last post.
And by the way, don't think that native speakers from English-speaking countries can just sit back and not worry about all this. There's plenty for them to do as well. First, they will have to slow down and be far more considerate when speaking to non-native English speakers. It also means they need to keep the language simple.
The goal is to make communication and performance go hand in hand across different regions of the world and business objectives. And as English Users, you're already a one step ahead of the rest.
Now if you'd like to read more about this topic, we highly recommend a recent CNN feature on their business page that goes into it further.
And to close it off, here is an interview with Tsedal Neeley, the Harvard Business School assistant professor who explains why every company needs a language strategy. Every company, including yours.