Thursday, June 14, 2012

The Importance of Knowing Spanish for your Organization

If You Are Not Speaking It, They Are Not Buying It®


This article on Monster touches on the critical nature of knowing how to speak Spanish in today's workplace. 
 Some Highlights: "With Americanized English the common tongue for much of the industrialized world, knowing a second language might seem as useless as learning Morse code. However, executive recruiters and hiring personnel say North Americans who speak Spanish can do far more than chat up Latino receptionists. Bilingual skills help job seekers land work. They can lead to key assignments and pay raises. In some cases, they may even be a job requirement.
Bilingual Means Feeling Comfortable and Productive
According to the January 2005 Korn/Ferry International Executive Recruiter Index, 88 percent of executive recruiters say the ability to speak more than one language is critical to international business success. Seventy-nine percent of North American recruiters cited Spanish as the additional language most in demand by employers. French was next at 43 percent, followed by Mandarin Chinese (30 percent).
"If I send US nationals into another country, I want them to acclimate and assimilate quickly," says Tom Birmingham, Korn/Ferry's managing director of global accounts. "Sure, in certain areas of Latin America they can get around OK without knowing Spanish, but personally and professionally I want them to feel comfortable."
Birmingham notes that an employee who can navigate a foreign environment with ease will probably be both happier and more productive than one who cannot. From a business standpoint, speaking another person's native language helps win trust.
"Global companies look at people who have global skills," Birmingham says. "And the ability to speak other languages, especially Spanish, is a global skill." By Dan Woog, Monster Contributing Writer

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