Useful languages to learn besides English.
The good news for those who aren’t keen on learning English, is that it doesn’t have to be your worst nightmare anymore. No more poring over this language and its grammar rules. Instead, pick one of the equally booming languages that are conquering the world and soak it up today!
There are many reasons why you should study English, but there are also many reasons why studying other languages may be just as useful and important as English. Even though English doesn’t belong to the most difficult of languages in the world, many people still struggle to understand grammar rules and pronunciation that vary across different English-speaking countries. So, what languages are truly beneficial in today’s reality?
Let’s start with Chinese – more precisely Mandarin, which is the official language of the People's Republic of China. Besides being one of the most widely spread languages, it is also one of the most difficult. It is estimated that more than 20,000 characters exist in written Mandarin, but to read a newspaper, you need to know as many as 2000-3000 characters! Reaching fluency in Mandarin takes much more time than in Spanish or French, but the fact that Mark Zuckerberg, the founder of Facebook, made an effort and spoke to the Chinese audience at their University for about 30 minutes, should make you even more motivated to start learning it. But its difficulty is what makes it so unique and valuable on the job market. Looking at the economy of China, and how fast it is developing, we can only suspect how big an empire it will be in the future. So, if you are interested in doing business globally or working in China, it would be a good idea to get familiar with Mandarin to become an attractive, potential employee. What’s more interesting, according to China Daily, a daily newspaper, around 400 million Chinese learn English additionally, which amounts to more than all U.S English speakers.
Spanish allows you to cooperate and communicate not only throughout Europe but also in the US and South America. It passes for a very phonetic and melodic language which actually is quite pleasant and quick to learn, except for the fact that it has more than 18 tenses! In addition to its constantly developing and influential culture, there are obviously connections towards the business world. In fact, around 50% to 70% of American students most frequently choose Spanish as their second language to study, which only shows how many people will continue to use it fluently in the future. With knowledge of this language, your chances are broader in many aspects of your life, beginning with work opportunities and connections with other people. Since mutual trade goes up while trading in Spanish, companies are more likely to seek Spanish-speaking employees to make their business grow more in Latin American markets.
The Arabic language is hugely powerful and is the liturgical language of Islam, the second-largest religion in the world. Even though there are around 300 million people who speak Arabic, only 100 million of them are non-native speakers. Plenty of international companies and governmental organizations seek fluent Arabic speakers, but as a business, communicating with your Arabic customers in their language will place you in a better light and distinguish you from your competitors in the business market. What’s more, some governments do their best and offer scholarships for people interested in learning Arabic – what more do you need to start?
Russia is widely known across Europe and Asian territories. It certainly has huge political and economic power, and besides the Cyrillic alphabet, as much as 300 million people can speak Russian around the world. Again, it is the next business-oriented language, which gives you more opportunities in the global market. Considering the size of Russia, which is two times bigger than the US, and the fact it’s a huge exporter of many natural resources, makes it a very appealing market for many companies. Additionally, if you’re interested in discovering the Russian culture, it will give you deeper insight into the original versions of famous Russian literature. The next advantage of learning Russian, is that it makes is easier to learn other Slavic languages like Ukrainian and Belarusian, and communicate with a greater number of people.
The first and the most appealing reason for learning French is that a lot of multinational organizations like the United Nations, the European Union, UNESCO, NATO, the International Olympic Committee, the International Red Cross, the African Union, FIFA, and over 70 more, use French as their official and administrative language. Needless to say, that a good command of French will definitely increase your chances for a career in those institutions, in France and other French-speaking countries, which is, by the way, the only language along with English, spoken on all five continents. It also currently makes it the third most usable business language globally. Who wouldn’t like to be able to speak the language of love?
German is among the top European, business-oriented languages. Did you know that the economy of Germany remains one of the most powerful in the European Union? So, if you are about to do international business, knowing German will definitely increase your chances for a job in an international company. Also, because Germany is constantly pioneering new technologies, and many multinational companies are located there, German employers will probably demand high fluency in this language. Despite having complicated spelling, it slightly resembles English, which certainly helps while learning. So, if you are still wondering if it is worth your effort, think about how many doors it’s going to open for you. German Universities pass for excellent schools with relatively low fees and high scholarships for students. After that, you may think about those successful German corporations, and how you are going to unite with foreigners.
Remember that knowing English is nowadays considered to be an obvious asset, so learning other languages will make you a very attractive employee. Besides business chances, knowing other languages allows you to travel around the world, get to know other cultures and people, as well as develop your personality.