English is thought of the lingua franca of our era. Even though native English speakers are about five% of the world's population (300-400 million men and women), English is one particular of the most spoken languages about the globe and the most published one particular. Why? Due to the fact there are additional than one particular billion men and women who speak it, no matter if it really is a mother tongue or a second language. 1 billion is a extremely impressive figure, is not it?

Understanding a foreign language is just an solution

There is a typical notion amongst native English speakers that they never will need to understand a further language. This is naturally primarily based on the reality that English is spoken in so several other nations. They can travel to Sweden, Poland, Romania, Ethiopia, Mexico, Russia or China and have tiny or no troubles in obtaining along with the locals mainly because they all speak English. (Some of the native English speakers admit that from time to time these foreigners even speak greater English than their pals at household.) Hence, mastering a foreign language is just an solution, not a necessity.

The most current statistics about the quantity of British pupils that take A-levels in foreign languages help this statement. Not only there has been a dramatic drop in attending German or French classes compared to the mid-90&primes, but these figures have fallen to a record low. Pupils choose science and maths alternatively. Hence, one particular can say that mastering languages is a foreign idea to today's British teenagers.

Are the British at threat of becoming a nation of monolinguals?

The concept that the British could develop into a nation of monolinguals is a hot subject. An report about this situation, not too long ago published by The Guardian, got additional than 1000 comments in just four days. Some say it currently is. Other individuals argue against this. Nonetheless, they agree that being aware of additional than one particular language may possibly be additional advantageous, but they just decide on not to understand a further language when English is adequate.

I specifically liked the comparison amongst English and Latin in this report. Disregarding the time periods, each languages have a somewhat little quantity of native speakers and are spoken as a second language by a substantial quantity of men and women from other nations. So the vast majority of the speakers are bilingual. The distinction stands in the way men and women understand the second language: not only the conquered had to understand Latin, but also the conquerors who settled outdoors the walls of Rome had to understand the nearby language. In contrast, men and women currently struggle to understand English, but the native speakers look not to bother mastering any other language. As English is now a extensively spoken international language, English speakers may possibly feel they will need no other language this is extremely a lot a modern day invention, with no precedent in older civilisations.

How does this influence your enterprise?

Contemplating the effect of making use of other languages when undertaking enterprise, right here is a quote that says it all:

“If I am promoting to you, I speak your language. If I am purchasing, dann müssen sie Deutsch sprechen.”* Willy Brandt

Selection makers in international business never have to understand all the languages of the nations they sell their goods or solutions to. They just have to be conscious that language is an vital tool in closing a deal.

* If I am promoting to you, I speak your language. If I am purchasing, then you should speak German.