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Examples of the increasingly global nature of business, society, and culture are easy to find — brands such as Google®, Apple® and Coca-Cola® all cross political, social and cultural boundaries. Modern economies and financial markets are linked tightly, meaning fluctuations in one country can have serious impacts in others. In this environment, businesses of all types are recognizing that they need to embrace globalization or risk being left behind. Global expansion is no longer just an opportunity, it’s a necessity.

global expansion: why english matters

A global mode of communication is needed to collaborate across borders, build ideas, and ultimately achieve the goal of global business expansion. English is the only language used widely enough in business to be a unifying force. English is essential to enabling this idea of global communication in the workplace.

Robert M. Hutchins – global communication

“A world community can exist only with world communication, which means something more than extensive short-wave facilities scattered about the globe. It means common understanding, a common tradition, common ideas, and common ideals.”

Robert M. Hutchins, American Educational Philosopher and Chancellor of the University of Chicago

global expansion case studies: what the experts have to say

michelin

At Michelin, English-language proficiency supports employees’ professional development so they can expand their international opportunities.

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fullchamp technologies

FullChamp Technologies encourage English proficiency to increase corporate competitiveness and support their transition to globalization.

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citi

Citi recognizes the benefits of fostering a culture English-proficient among their employees.

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building a global business: english language challenges

In order to access the full benefits of English in global expansion efforts, businesses need to overcome certain challenges.

Prioritizing global communication skills

priority gap

The need for English-proficient employees has increased in recent years. However, fewer companies actively encourage their employees to improve English-language proficiency skills. For nearly one in five multinational companies, the priority placed on encouraging English-language proficiency among employees significantly trails the reported need for English-speaking employees1. Businesses that face this gap could face short-term difficulties in integrating into the global business community due to problems communicating with clients and suppliers. More importantly, a lag in encouraging English proficiency could indicate that a business will increasingly fall behind competitors for whom English proficiency is a higher priority.

Preparing for globalization with English proficiency

proficiency gap

Overall, the importance of English is seen as important for a large majority of companies, but these same companies often believe that English proficiency among their employees is not adequate1. The existence of this proficiency gap may signal a warning that many companies are ill-prepared for increasing globalization; communication challenges may obstruct business growth, and insufficient English proficiency may actually make it more difficult for companies to fully integrate into the global business community.

Assessing English proficiency

assessment gap

Even when companies offer training programs in English, a large percentage don’t assess their employees after these programs conclude1. The existence of an assessment gap could lead to non-proficient employees being placed in situations where English proficiency is required and assumed, based on completion of a training program — and this could cause miscommunications, delays brought on by misunderstanding or even loss of business. Additionally, not determining the effectiveness of training could result in money wasted on non-performing programs, and stunting the effectiveness and growth that the training is intended to promote.

How the Toeic® program can help

Using a standardized assessment like the TOEIC® tests can enable you to recruit better communicators, retain your existing employees and promote key talent. This ultimately means you can expand into new territories with confidence, assured that your employees can handle the global challenges and opportunities of today and tomorrow.

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