An idea is only as good as the person who articulates it. If a person can’t sell his or her good idea to a needed investor, then the idea is wasted. This happens in business all the time, all around the world.
In a recent study from the University of St. Gallen in Swtizerland, researchers examined the need for clearer communications in business. They found the inability to conduct a clear back-and-forth with employees, managers, investors, clients and business partners can lead to exponential losses for a company. An example may be that your organization has a meeting with an important foreign stakeholder to explain your new business strategy, but an obvious language barrier is keeping you from adequately explaining yourself. As a result, your business may lose that investor and the revenue he or she represents.
Becoming and, more importantly, remaining successful on in the global economy is starkly different than doing so locally. To truly compete, your business not only has to be one of the best in your industry, but you also need to maintain open lines of communication with other industry leaders, as well as international investors, stakeholders and even interested third parties who can affect public opinion, like media outlets. That means ensuring yourself and your employees have a solid grasp on the universal language of business, English.
You need to be an authority in your field, but establishing your company as such requires frequent conversations and exchanges. For instance, given the importance of the international economy, news organizations often dedicate staff to cover the daily happenings. If your business were to receive coverage, whether good or bad, it’s important your public relations staff are equipped with the Business English language training they need to adequately answer questions and give statements. In many situations, the reputation of your company may rest on the shoulders of a single spokesperson, whether it be someone talking to the press or giving a presentation to an important prospective investor. If that employee are unable to clearly and accurately deliver the message your company has worked to construct, you could miss out on a potentially lucrative opportunity.
Cross-border economics have helped blend national borders, taking previously segmented workforces and combining them so the best companies can find and obtain the best talent. However, introducing your staff to foreign cultures, especially if you’re new to the international marketplace, could prove troublesome if there are no Business English training programs in place to put everyone on the same page.
Try to consider a situation in which you’ve just brought on a highly recruited employee to help push your business past the competition. Assuming he or she is a nonnative English speaker with limited language training, miscommunicated instruction could lead to intense stress and ultimately the employee’s departure. Of course, your business can choose to recruit staff who already speak English, but then you’d be limiting yourself on talent. It’s currently estimated that more than one billion people in the world speak English, whether as a first or second language. That still leaves more than 6 billion whose only barrier to succeeding internationally may be learning English.
With a robust Business English training program, your company can explore talent from regions throughout the globe. With adequate options available for incoming staff, HR departments can attract talent based more on merit than the ability to communicate in your native tongue.