4 Languages to Learn for Business in 2020
As the world adapts to being online more and more, so are we changing how we communicate. In particular, these changes are affecting the way we do business and network with other entrepreneurs. While English is spoken by more than 1.5 billion people, being monolingual can be a disadvantage in today’s globalized world. On the one hand, multilingualism gives workers the competitive edge they need to get a new, international job.
On the other, business owners who want to scale up their businesses would be wise to acquire foreign-language speakers as their in-demand skills are essential to ensure accurate and fruitful communication with their partners abroad. But which are the most useful languages to know in a professional setting? Here are the top 4 languages to learn for business in 2020.
1. Mandarin Chinese
There’s no better time to learn Mandarin than today. With more than a billion native speakers and with China being the second-largest economy in the world, being fluent in Mandarin is a significant advantage when it comes to business. The Chinese economy has been growing exponentially in the last few decades. In fact, the National Bureau of Statistics in China shows that in 2018, it was seven times larger than in 2000. Though this is a challenging language to acquire, the benefits are worth the effort, as any employer would be pleased to add these specialist language skills to their repertoire.
Knowing German will also open new business pathways as Germany is the European nation with the most thriving economy. Further, this country is a key economic partner for Canada, with the largest market for Canadian exports. Bilateral trade has increased in the past few years, totalling almost $25 billion in 2018, thanks to new treaties signed (like the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement). It’s no surprise, then, that employers are looking for bilingual employees with strong German skills to communicate with their clients and partners abroad.
Those who do business in the fields of oil, energy and infrastructure will find Arabic to be an extremely useful language, especially considering that many businessmen in the Arab countries do not speak English. As shown by the Canadian-Arab Business Council, the Middle Eastern economy was US$3-trillion in 2019 (50% larger than Canada’s economy), and growing at a faster rate every year; so, this market should not be ignored!
With over 500 million speakers worldwide, Spanish is not a language to be overlooked. After all, the USA—Canada’s largest trading partner—is the country with the second-largest number of Spanish speakers in the world (and is on course to be number one by 2050). Learning Spanish, then, is not only essential for those who want to enter the Latin American and Spanish markets, but elsewhere in the world, as well, especially in the fields of mass media and management. Sign up for a face-to-face or online Spanish course today and new opportunities will open up for you and your business!
No matter the size of your company or your professional objectives, learning a new language will always be beneficial in business. Being multilingual will not only help companies to sell their services and products to new audiences but it will also be useful when applying to new jobs at international companies. Learn one of these languages today and give your CV the boost it needs to get the job, promotion or raise you always wanted!