Language can greatly affect your business, regardless if you’ve made the move to international markets or not. With our increasingly interconnected society and our growing global economy, it’s important to take other cultures into account when creating a business strategy. Whether you plan on learning a new language, or just becoming aware of what potential clients and customers are speaking, this article is here as an outline to the most powerful voices in business.
As the most widely spoken language in China, (with over 900 million native speakers and 193 million more speaking it as a second language) it is one of the best languages to have knowledge of for business purposes. China has the world’s largest economy and is home to some giant businesses. However, outside of China mandarin is also spoken in Taiwan, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and Singapore - places of high purchasing power and emerging markets.
Worldwide, english is spoken by over 900 million individuals and can be heard all over the world. In many countries, english is the primary foreign language used, and is the official language of many of the leading international organizations. It’s used in 94 countries, is the most common language on the internet and is an important language for businesses to succeed globally.
With about 530 million spanish speakers worldwide, having a solid understanding of the language can help business both internationally and at home here in the states. Spanish is the official language in more than 20 countries, but even in America, 30% of the population are native spanish speakers - with that number only projected to rise by the end of next year.
While most popular throughout the Middle East, Arabic is spoken by 422 million people worldwide. In the last ten years alone, the use of arabic has increased by 2500% - passing benchmarks set by previous leaders english and spanish. If you’re looking to expand your business into the Middle East or into the oil, gas, fashion, or tourism markets, having an effective translator, or having extensive knowledge yourself is a must.
Known as the language of love, french also holds an influential place in the business world. Spoken in 39 countries by over 229 million people, having french in your business repertoire opens doors to new markets in areas that typically have low english speaking populations. It is also the official language of large international organizations like the United Nations and the World Trade Organization.
A translator to do it all
Learning a new language may seem impossible to some, but in the international world of business, the knowledge of other languages and cultural differences is detrimental. If it seems like too large of a task to take on, a translator is the way to go. Having an effective translator on your team can help ease transitions to international markets as well as help business at home. Translators are highly skilled in interpretations, body language, cultural exchange, and all the small details that typically get left behind by online services or guess work. Help your business, hire a translator.