Knowledge of a language – key to success


The language and cultural barriers are limitations in foreign expansion.

According to research conducted by Education First in cooperation with „The Economist”, 60 per cent of respondents out of ca. 600 managers from all over the world consider language and cultural barriers as the biggest limitations on the way to foreign expansion – right next to technological competences. It is the bad communication with partners and clients which mainly contributes to the lack of success on foreign markets.


First and foremost, it is about understanding where we want to conduct our businesses. The way of running a business in Poland does not always work, for instance, in Germany. People there are much more direct and scrupulous and Polish entrepreneur should adjust to these conditions. However, the most important thing is the possibility of communication, that is the ability to speak German fluently – says Piotr Majdan, country manager in Education First in Poland.


According to 68 per cent of respondents, the English language still constitutes the most important language in the world of business. The Chinese language is on the second place, however, only 8 per cent of managers demand from their employees to speak fluently in this language. In spite of the fact that 90 per cent of higher-rank managers notice a relation between language communication and increasing sales, the half of them do not invest in development of employees in the area of universal communication in business – points out Piotr Majdan.


The conducted research presents that nearly half of managers claim that all difficulties in communication with partners result from the lack of training courses in the area of knowledge of a foreign language. The cultural and language skills are also a very important issue in multi-cultural teams which are becoming more and more popular – 90 per cent of respondents believe that the better communication in such teams enables generation of higher incomes.


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