Why Language Skills Are Essential in Global Market Navigation for Startups

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Never before has our world been so interconnected and globalised as it is today, so the ability to speak multiple languages is of great importance. However, multilingualism goes beyond communication. Since culture and language are strictly interlinked, learning a foreign language can help you understand the culture and traditions of the people who speak it. As a result, multilingualism serves as a bridge between languages and cultures. SInce the 1980s, the English language has been recognised as the lingua franca used in fields such as technology, tourism, and business.

Whichever business you’re involved in, you will have probably noticed that English terminology has found its way in any technical jargon. This is not surprising, as the population of English speakers worldwide is around 1.35 billion individuals. Consequently, being proficient in multiple languages, particularly English, is essential in today's global market.

How Can English Language Skills Benefit Your Business?

Effective communication is a skill that anyone involved in dealing with others should master. Moreover, the ability to communicate effectively in a foreign language, such as English, can bring many significant advantages to your business. For this reason, many companies are encouraging their employees to improve their language skills, leading to a surge in demand for Business English education.

Let’s see how English skills can be useful to your business:

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English And Startups - a Winning Combination

In today's business landscape, most startups operate on a global scale right from the start, not only in terms of trading, but also sourcing products, ideas, and talent.

While remote working and visas for digital nomads have facilitated the hiring of international candidates, the inability of speaking the recognised lingua franca (i.e. English, currently) can hinder the process.

Although some countries are inclined to recognize English as an official second language to address local talent shortages, there are concerns that potential cultural repercussions might arise. Despite this obstacle, standardising the language throughout the teams would mean increasing the chances of hiring the most qualified individuals for the job, regardless of their cultural background.

This would be a great advantage not only for multinational corporations but also for startups, to build optimal performance and connectivity from the get-go. Furthermore, startups who embrace the English-only rule in their business are more likely to emerge as more competitive and better able to achieve growth in a global market.

What English Course Is Suitable for Your Business?

To help you decide, let’s take a step back to understand TEFL. ‘What is TEFL?’ You might ask. Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) is an industry where English is taught as a second language to international learners. A typical TEFL class focuses on General English, where grammar, vocabulary and skills (Reading, Listening, Writing, Speaking) are taught around materials that cover a wide range of topics, such as social events, the environment, hopes and dreams etc. Although generally useful, this kind of course wouldn’t be suitable for the team in your business.

Unlike General English, Business English courses are specifically designed to address communication needs for professionals in the workplace, such as meetings, negotiations, and presentations. Tailored Business English courses prioritise participants' needs, adapting lessons to their industry and role requirements using authentic materials. This approach is crucial to ensure that everyone in your team feels included and appreciated.

In this type of courses, there isn’t a focus on grammar and basic language skills - which are interwoven in the lesson - because Business English focuses on specific vocabulary and formal language relevant to professional contexts. Because of the unique nature of these courses, it’s important to engage with a language trainer who understands your needs.

As Business English courses are usually company-funded, you must ensure that your instructor provides evaluation reports to follow the progress of your team. Typically,

lessons are carried out on-site, so it’s your responsibility to find a quiet area where the classes can take place.

Set Up Your Startup

As an entrepreneur, it’s your responsibility to give your business the best chances to succeed. This can also mean helping your team develop their English language skills to improve their confidence and effectiveness in dealing with clients and suppliers.