Economic confidence improves above forecast – but are you ready?
I found it encouraging to read that, "Britain will end the year with its strongest rate of jobs growth since 2007". Cautious signs that the economy is healing were echoed by the Chancellor George Osborne. Economic confidence in the Eurozone also improved more than economists' forecast back in June, adding to indications that the 17-nation economy is also starting to recover from the longest recession since the debut of the common currency.
Boosting business growth is not about finding additional revenue streams. Rather, it is about working with what we already have. In my opinion, businesses in the Europe have a long way to go before tapping into the profit potential of a culturally and linguistically diverse population. Optimising the business potential of multilingualism begins with a culture of inclusion. Real progress will be achieved if businesses, large and small, take stock of existing language skills and use these to their advantage, while ensuring the consistent development of learning strategies that are both motivating and compatible with the demands of the workforce.
By taking time to understand the latest learning technologies and content, organisations start working towards a global learning strategy. Recruitment policies, training strategies and business plans can be reviewed to ensure language learning is an integral part of the organisation. Talent can further be enhanced by developing creative and target-driven learning strategies from the ground up, which are adapted to the individual needs of each organisation.
Good multilingual communication skills open up opportunities that make the difference between success and failure. Organisations aiming to gain a competitive advantage and leverage talent need to step outside 'local silo' ways of operation and embrace the exciting breadth of global knowledge, learning content and connections currently available. The time is now for organisations to re-evaluate their training, performance management and succession processes in order to ensure talent mobility is truly facilitated to deliver sustainable growth.
It's all in the communication
In a rapidly changing workforce, language skills provide the key to communicating across borders and operating both efficiently and profitably. Multilingual learning also opens up intercultural dialogue and better communication amongst staff, which in turn, increases efficiency, quality, accuracy and the smooth running of business operations.
The United Kingdom is fortunate to have a diverse and growing population. However, out of a population of 62 million, just over 59 million are English-speaking. This means that there is a significant pool of potential talent across the nation that is being underutilised due to insufficient English language skills. In this regard, organisations in the United Kingdom could implement language training strategies for migrant workers who are otherwise deemed to have the requisite talent and skill to meet certain labour shortages.
The task now for organisations is to find the right measures to ensure that they have a scalable and skilled workforce and to offer language training in ways that are both motivating and suitable. The economy is (nearly) ready - are you?