The United States has always been a diverse country with hundreds of ethnic groups living together, working together, making their communities strive together. Shop a Small Business believes in diversity and supports the efforts of different groups to make our local communities stronger. And today we will discuss the benefits of learning a foreign language for small business owners.
If you are running a small business in any part of the country, you might have experienced a need for a speaker of any other language than English. For Texas entrepreneurs, it’s often the Spanish language. You inevitably face a situation when the language barrier does not allow you to close a deal or sell your service. We would strongly recommend being extra empathetic to the people who struggle with English. Remember, it’s not their first language, and it is not that easy to even overcome this fear of making a mistake when you speak. So to understand better what people who either learn English as their second language or learn a second language to be able to communicate with the native speakers, we prepared a short analysis of the benefits of learning a second language as an adult.
1. Gives insights into the Cultures of the World
No matter how hard it is to learn a foreign language, it is extremely rewarding to understand and converse with native speakers. Usually, learning another languages opens many doors into the cultures of the world, including understanding people’s behaviors and traditions. It can definitely help your small local business to acquire long-term customers among certain ethnic groups if your competition is not as accommodating and friendly.
2. Cognitive development
Learning any other language than your native improves memory, concentration, critical thinking ability. It is never too late to start learning a second language. But learning a second (or third, or fourth) language at a young age will greatly improve your creativity, listening skills, and comprehension.
3. Boost confidence
Learning a foreign language is not an easy task, and making mistakes and acknowledging them is a part of the learning process. Often it is harder for adults than for kids to put themselves out of their comfort zone, while practicing speaking or writing in a foreign language. But as many of us know, there is no better sense of accomplishment than conversing with someone in their native language. You just have to start.
4. Potential business growth
Even if you did thorough demographic research before opening your small business, many rules of running a small business in the pandemic changed, including moving business in online platforms. It means that your small business now has the potential to grow and gain more traffic through means of communications, like conversing in a foreign language.
5. Connection with clients
Generally speaking, it is easy for bilingual people to find connections with other bilinguals regardless of the language they speak. As an entrepreneur, you want to open as many doors as you can, and a second language might just be the one you need.
Learning a foreign language in adulthood might seem intimidating and unrealistic. But benefits of speaking another language are numerous. Your travel experience becomes richer, your confidence grows, you are setting a great example of world citizen to the younger generation, and on top of that, you may have a great advantage comparing to your competitors on the market.
Check these online resources for learning a new language:
Wondrium (Spanish, Italian, German, Portuguese, French, Greek, Latin, and more)
Coursera (Spanish, Russian, Chinese, Korean, Japanese, French, and more)
Rosetta Stone (Spanish, French, Portuguese, Filipino, German, Hindi, Farsi, Vietnamese, Turkish, and more)
Duo Lingo (Spanish, French, German, Italian, Dutch, Japanese, Arabic, Hindi, and even High Valyrian for Game of Thrones fans).
In-person and online classes: