How Closing the Language Skills Gap May Save Your Business Big $$$
Recently, Sheerin Vesin, Rosetta Stone Enterprise & Education’s HR practice lead, contributed an article to CRM Xchange. Here are the highlights:
One of our customers, Aspen Skiing Company in Aspen, Colorado, sought to provide their employees with foreign language proficiency. With those skills, their associates would be able to communicate with the multitudes of international visitors that the ski resorts receive every year. For example, ski instructors would be able to communicate more clearly with their students, building trust. These changes fostered brand loyalty amongst the company’s clients.
We don’t have to tell you how valuable brand loyalty can be.
Consumption in emerging markets is expected to hit a staggering $30 trillion by 2025, so it’s not surprising that 71 percent of business leaders currently plan to grow their companies in markets where English is not predominantly spoken. Considering this changing international landscape, language acquisition should be a key part in any organization’s learning strategy.
But there are also benefits in productivity and employee retention. A new study from Rosetta Stone reveals implementing language training has numerous employee benefits. The survey found 71 percent of respondents in sales and customer service roles reported that language training has helped them perform better in their job, and 72 percent of respondents said that learning a language has made them more confident in their work with teams, partners or vendors who speak the language they learned. Language training also fosters loyalty among employees. Seventy-eight percent reported “Because I was provided access to this training, I feel my company takes an interest in my development,” and 65 percent reported they are more likely to stay with their current employer.
So how do you work toward these impressive benefits? Implementing a language strategy that leverages the skills that exist within your workforce, and builds them where they are lacking, can be streamlined into three crucial steps:
- (1) Identify linguistic and cultural competency skills that exist within your workforce, and diagnose linguistic and cultural skills gaps by conducting a simple employee survey.
- (2) Document your organizational goals, which should include the geographic or demographic markets you will need to penetrate in order to achieve them, then map the necessary language and cultural communication skills to see where you have gaps you need to fill.
- (3) Infuse global communication skill development into employee development plans so employees can begin building the critical skills to connect with their customers.
Want to learn more about the benefits of implementing a language strategy? Check out our latest study: How Language Impacts Business.