Seminar Two Current Event Summary
Kelly Root
LANGUAGE AND CULTURE - eng231-s2014-ol-u-91566.003

Global Business Speaks English

This article addresses the business language needs of large corporations. With the growth of internet-based commerce, it is the small and mid-sized companies with poor English skills who are getting left behind. Awkward phrasing, grammatical errors and misspellings undermine their effort to win customers. Good business language support needs to be accessible (and affordable) to everyone. “Ready or not, English is now the global language of business. More and more multinational companies are mandating English as the common corporate language—Airbus, Daimler-Chrysler, Fast Retailing, Nokia, Renault, Samsung, SAP, Technicolor, and Microsoft in Beijing, to name a few—in an attempt to facilitate communication and performance across geographically diverse functions and business endeavors.( Neeley,2012)”
People naturally communicate in the language and manner that works best for them so imposing a language policy will always create problems. Of course, it's a good idea to encourage employees to learn useful languages and English is the most useful for most international corporations.
One of the reasons that English has become an international language of commerce is that it has been allowed to develop, adopting words and structures from other languages while adapting to different cultural influences.
Just as products need to be localized to suit particular markets, corporations need to react to the cultural requirements of their operations. Insisting that English be the medium of communication across the board is an over-simplified approach.


Neeley, T. (2012, May). Global Business Speaks English. Retrieved April 14, 2014, from http://hbr.org/2012/05/global-business-speaks-english/ar/1