According to a special feature in the January 14 issue of The Economist, companies and employees need to embrace continuous learning as a core skill to remain competitive in a 21st century economy increasingly characterized by the blend of human and machine intelligence. Attaining competency in Business English is critical to this goal on several levels.
First, Business English is itself a skill. Any worker in a customer-facing role increasingly needs English, not just to communicate with prospects from English-speaking countries, but to use as a common language with anyone who does not speak their native tongue. Those in technical and professional roles need English to participate in international communities of practice and exchange ideas with colleagues. Those in lower skill roles at risk for automation especially need Business English to give them the flexibility to transition into new positions.
Business English also empowers people to learn more quickly and expand the scope of career opportunities in an uncertain future. Formal training materials can be translated or localized, but the truly valuable “tribal knowledge” that comes from experience and collaboration within a field of practice is passed along through conversation, much of it in English. Those who can’t confidently participate in those conversations because of lack of Business English competency miss out on the exchange of ideas that forms the bedrock of learning, as well as on the serendipitous connections that can lead to future career growth opportunities.
Developing these skills is not just the responsibility of individuals. According to The Economist, a growing number of employers are “putting increasing emphasis on learning as a skill in its own right.” Organizational investments in Business English can help set those efforts on a firm foundation.
GlobalEnglish programs can help organizations better prepare for a future of continuous learning. Our unique style of blended learning empowers your talent to better manage other important global businesses challenges, including confident and fluid interaction with English-speaking audiences in professional settings, adapting to new technology and business models, and leveraging technology for productivity and analytics. Our customers find time and again that as their employees gain a better foothold on Business English, they improve on overall performance.
We encourage organizations seeking to improve the capability and capacity of their leadership pipeline to talk with their local GlobalEnglish to see how we can help them achieve their goals, including being ready for the learning-centric workplace of the 21st century. Reach out today to discover how to integrate Business English into your organization’s ongoing learning offers.