Learn To Speak A Language For Career Benefits

If you’re looking to get ahead, learn to speak a language. As the economy becomes more globalized, learning another language improves your employability as companies will pay a premium for multi-lingual employees.

The Internet and other market pressures have created an economy that is increasingly interconnected and globalized. As a result, businesses can use workers from around the world to complete projects, increasing labor cost competitiveness and access to knowledge bases. While modern telecommunications technology has eliminated many geographic barriers to a more interconnected global workforce, language barriers remain.

Companies are in search of multilingual employees to help facilitate worldwide operations. The demand for multilingual employees is pronounced in management. According to a recent study by Korn/Ferry International, about 31 percent of executives are bilingual, while 20 percent more speak more than two languages.

Bottom line: If you want to move up, you need to learn to speak a language other than your native tongue.

Hot Languages

In the U.S., employees who speak both Spanish and English are in high demand as Hispanic Americans are now the biggest minority population in the U.S., and have made up about half of all the nation’s population growth for the past decade. International companies doing business in the U.S. would also do well to have Spanish-speakers because of the growing economic and political strength of this demographic.

The rising might of China and India makes learning the languages of these Asian nations a plus for workers in Australia and other nations with significant economic ties to these nations.

Cashing In On Language Skills

If you learn to speak a language other than your native language, you can reap significant economic benefits. A recent study shows that pay for bilingual employees ranges from 5 to 20 percent more than that of employees in similar jobs who have only one language.

If you take the plunge and learn a new language, be prepared to demonstrate your competency if you list your language skills on your resume. Companies seeking bilingual workers typically give job candidates competency exams that may include written and oral examination.

When describing your language skills, be honest. Some employers will hire employees with basic foreign language skills and provide them with additional training to bring them up to speed.
If you learn to speak a language, you can increase your employability and your earning potential, making taking a language course or investing in language software well worth your while.

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