As the world become more interconnected it becomes more valuable to your career and your earning potential to be able to speak more than one language. As we know how important English is to have any chance at career, that’s why English speaking courses are on the rise. With over 365 million native speakers and close to a billion who speak it as second language it is by far the most important business language to learn. Many of us native English speakers however become lazy at learning other languages as most serious business people around the world have learned at least rudimentary English. We should not then make the mistake of staying unilingual as learning other languages not only makes you smarter it can also open up more opportunity. But what other languages should you learn to further your career?
Probably the easiest global language for an English speaker to learn is Spanish. With over 570 million native speakers it ranks second in the world for mother tongues. It is language of the most fast growing parts of the Americas and once you master speaking Spanish you will have no difficulty quickly being able to understand Portuguese and even Italian. With just this language and English you will be able to conduct business almost anywhere in the Americas.
The second most important language is one of the most difficult to learn but once you do become proficient in it you will see many opportunities open up to you as it is the native tongue of one of the most important centres of manufacturing and the economy that looks destined to dominate not just Asia but possibly the World. Studying Mandarin will seem a daunting task but it is becoming increasingly important for not just executive roles within in China, but across south east asia as well since the Chinese diaspora is an important part of the business communities in Thailand, Cambodia, Indonesia and Myanmar and being able to converse with them in the language they speak at home will open doors for you.
The third language is also one that most English speakers find difficult to learn because like Chinese it has a different system of writing. It is the language of some of the richest countries in the world and learning it will open up tremendous opportunities in the Middle East and North Africa. Arabic can seem daunting at first but there are lots of resources available to help you even more so than learning Chinese. You should have no difficulty finding a tutor as almost every mosque will have access to Arabic language learning programs.
By being able to add these three languages to your skill you should now be able to converse with a third of the planet in their native tongue. This can be an incredibly valuable to not only strengthen business relationships but also make you much more valuable to employers and open up opportunities for travel and cultural exploration. It will unlock the world for you and set you free to explore it.