1. Talk your way into a new job, in a new language
English may be the lingua franca of the business world, but if you’re not up for a rendezvous with a language prof, you could be drawing your own limits.
“Foreign languages these days have only advantages,” notes global citizen coach Elizabeth Kruempelmann — and that’s not just for the time zone-trotting polyglots who close deals in foreign restaurants before jetsetting to exotic airports.
2. Foreign language skills are essential for global business journalists
Angel Gonzalez, who in recent weeks of his coverage for Dow Jones News Wires has flown over the BP oil spill by helicopter and ridden in boats with local officials, is the prototype for today’s global business journalist.
He is trilingual, he writes online, he writes for print, he does video and he has written a number of long stories on his BlackBerry. Whatever works at the time.
In today’s coverage, fluency in languages other than English and confidence in reporting with a variety of mediums makes a journalism graduate attractive to global business journalism organizations expanding their reach country by country. News bureaus in places like Shanghai and Dubai want bilingual reporters.