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Language and Intercultural Skills in European SMEs By Name Presented to [Name of Professor] Class Institution Language and Intercultural Skills in SMEs in Europe Introduction The business world is increasingly becoming competitive due to the global phenomenon called globalization…
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Language and Intercultural Skills in European SMES
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Download file to see previous pages In effect, this underlines the global approach that business is taking. In this case, globalisation does not only affect the multinational corporations, but also affects SMEs. Thus, remaining competitive and adapting to the modern business environment is the most essential approach towards the global business phenomenon. Adapting to the new business models requires SMEs to acquire new skills essential for remaining competitive. In this regard, SMEs should not continue with the usual methods of transacting business. One important object for these businesses is to ensure that they learned foreign languages enhance their competitiveness in the business world. It is important to point out that, customers will always appreciate conducting business while speaking their language. In effect, managers will always find it competitive to learn foreign languages as an essential skill to conduct their businesses. On the other hand, it is crucial for managers to learn intercultural skills since “Geography is dead” on a business perspective. However, in order for SMEs' managers to learn foreign languages and intercultural skills, it is important for businesses, governments, and university to collaborate in order to prepare young managers to adapt to the competitive global market effectively. Therefore, the first part of this expose discusses the importance of learning foreign languages in SMEs, in Europe. The second part is a discussion of the importance of intercultural skills for these SMEs. Finally, the final part of the expose is a discussion of the collaborative efforts businesses, governments, and the university can implement to prepare the budding managers to a competitive global business environment. Importance of Foreign Language Skills for European SMEs English is ideally the formal language for conducting business in Europe. However, there are other important languages that an individual should learn in order for them to transact business in an orderly manner. Some of these languages include Spanish, French, and German, among other languages. In this regard, failure to learn foreign languages limits SMEs in terms of market reach and expansion. According to the European Union (2003, p. 39), SMEs are small and medium-sized enterprises, which meet a set definition criteria of staff headcount, annual balance sheet and turnover. On the other hand, skills in foreign languages ensure that the time taken for negotiations is shorter and since managers in SMEs are able to build relationships while communicating in the local language of the countries of their operations. Besides, foreign language skills are crucial in eliminating poor judgement since managers are able to interpret data by understanding the foreign language. According to Maurais and Morris (2003, p.1), “Global communications challenges are becoming increasingly prominent in a rapidly changing world characterised by rising interdependence.” In this regard, this implies that no single business unit can survive on its own without depending on another business. In this case, a business needs suppliers and producers of the goods and services that formed their business operations. Importantly, businesses and customers have a symbiotic relationship enabled by communication. Communication entails passing information and obtaining feedback between two parties, which is possible by understanding ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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