Is learning English or any other language still worth the effort?
This question seems to become more and more relevant because many people did learn English at school and think they can cope in many situations. And companies seem to be more reluctant to invest in language trainings of their employees because saving costs at any price is the prevalent motto.
As the owner of the renowned language institute BCU and a very experienced trainer and tutor I would like to convince you of the contrary.
Therefore I will try to give you a number of reasons why a company should invest in the communication competency of their staff whose everyday job is dealing with lots of foreign customers, suppliers and partners.
- Globalisation is a widely recognized fact because everybody can see and experience its consequences both in a private and business context. And even smaller and medium-sized companies have joined or had to join the world market by extending their supply chains to find the most appropriate and/or cheapest raw materials as well as labour.
- It is a frequently mentioned fact that the number of skilled(& younger) workers is too small to satisfy the growing need for dynamic and creative staff. This is particularly true in the IT branch. So it is highly important for companies to attract skilled workers by offering perks that their employees need in their job and will improve their professional skills.
- Of course, generation Y seems to request a better work-life balance - but they are aware that they do need better communication skills in order to fulfill their very demanding tasks in an international context and represent their company adequately. To achieve this they have to learn the common denominator - English - to perfection.
- And you can be sure that your staff will feel rewarded by the appreciation that you show them by investing in their language skills - their motivation to invest themselves much more in their job will certainly be visible.
- And if they have to go abroad they will have to learn the language of their target country at least a little bit to show their interest in their new surroundings: their colleagues, business partners, neighbours as well as their new friends and their kids’ world.
- If they want to join in free-time activities and integrate into a new society this will be easier if they speak the language. Because real integration can only take place via the language - there is no doubt!
- We must not forget that learning languages is a fantastic kick for your brain - particularly nowadays where we use very creative and innovative methods and foster learner autonomy as much as possible. The state-of-the-art books on the market are a very good proof of the great development of teaching materials as compared to 30 or 20 years ago.