Improve Your Business Language Skills

See also: How to Write a Business Case

Business language skills are critical needs in this modern era of globalization and cut-throat competition.

An employee that has competency in business language skills is likely to be able to climb up the career ladder with ease. And that applies to businesses as a whole, too: a recent study conducted by Bersin and Associates reveals that organizations that are able to communicate their strategies in a clear and precise manner are 113 times more likely to achieve higher levels of profitability and efficiency.

A similar study conducted by Global English revealed that 97% of employees surveyed believe that poor communication as a result of inadequate business language skills can create misunderstanding.

A staggering 83% of employees report that poor business language skills have resulted in a negative impact on sales, profitability and efficiency of operations in their organizations. In the modern international workplace, the importance of these skills transcends the English language alone. If you are conducting business across many countries you may want to look into the 5 most popular business languages.

It is therefore imperative that anyone who wants to succeed in business, managers and workers alike, focuses on improving business language skills.

Gaining competency over this particular skill will allow you to communicate with your peers, subordinates, supervisors, and clients easily and clearly, and this will bring an increase in productivity that will ultimately result in higher profitability.

Here are six simple ways that will allow you to improve your business language skills quickly:

1. Increase Your Vocabulary

Improving vocabulary is key in mastering the specialized words used in business language.

You can easily improve your vocabulary through training software that offers a comprehensive range of exercises. Learning commonly-used business idioms and abbreviations can also enhance your vocabulary.

Furthermore, you can do research on the Internet in order to find the terminology used in the specific field that you are currently employed in. It is important that you adopt an inquisitive approach towards learning, and find the meaning of any business word that you are currently unfamiliar with. A business dictionary can prove to be particularly helpful, since you'll be able to find the complete meanings for new terms and their relevant usage within business communication.

2. Business Language Training

Business language training works too. If you're looking for a quick way to improve your business language skills, consider signing up for a language training course. These courses can be intensive or simply provide a few tips on how to communicate more effectively in business situations. You'll learn about things like listening skills, reading body language and how to speak clearly and concisely.

The best thing about corporate language courses is that they're accessible and affordable. Many companies will subsidize the cost of these courses so that all employees can take advantage of them — even if you're not in a management position.

If you're lucky enough to have access to this kind of training, take advantage of it!

3. Read Business-Related Material

You can significantly enhance your vocabulary by reading a wide variety of material related to your field or business.

Reading business information and current updates will not only allow you to remain abreast with the recent changes in the business environment but also allow you to keep up with any changes in terminology. This knowledge can prove to be essential when you are communicating with third parties or working on customer contracts.

See our page: Commercial Awareness for more.

4. Play Games

You can even learn business language by playing games like crosswords and word search games.

These games can allow you to enhance your business vocabulary while ensuring that the learning process is fun and engaging. Business-themed language games include crosswords based on financial terms and important concepts, or word search games using terminology from banking or industry. You can use free word-search puzzle generators to create your own games, if you can't find one specific to your field.

5. Watch Business-Oriented Programs

Watching programs that focus on business is an excellent way to improve language skills, because the people in those programs will be using key terms frequently and correctly.

These programs are often hosted by experts in the field and therefore can prove to be an important source of valuable information and knowledge as well as vocabulary terms. Business terminology is naturally used on these programs and merely watching them attentively can help you grasp terms that are part of business communications.

Listening to or watching these programs will not only allow you to become familiar with new words but also learn their correct pronunciation and usage.

Simple knowledge of business terminology cannot completely eliminate the chance of misunderstanding in organizations; rather, an employee must be able to correctly use the terms so that the underlying message is effectively communicated to the second party. Watching these programs will allow you to understand the current business scenario while also becoming familiar with a range of words and their proper uses.  

6. Practice

Learning new business terminology will not impact your communication skills until and unless these terms are used correctly in your the daily communication.

You must try to use as many relevant words as possible during your conversations with colleagues and peers. Furthermore, recently learned business terminology can and should be incorporated into the presentations you give, so that you are able to gain confidence in your ability to use the terminology.

Finally, you can practice your business language skills by writing business letters and memos.

An individual working in an organization is likely to need to communicate with stakeholders and peers through the medium of memos and letters. However, it must be remembered that letters and memos need to be to the point and precise. Your business language skills are critical during this point, because short sentences must convey your instructions, term, or requests. It is important to be familiar with the general writing pattern found in letter formats used in your industry. Use a formal tone where appropriate, and make sure the language you use helps to clearly convey the information.

See our page on Business Writing Tips for more.

The Skills You Need Guide to Getting a Job

Further Reading from Skills You Need

The Skills You Need Guide to Getting a Job

Develop the skills you need to get that job.

This eBook is essential reading for potential job-seekers. Not only does it cover identifying your skills but also the mechanics of applying for a job, writing a CV or resume and attending interviews.

It's critical to have these language skills if you want to have a successful career.

As the study reports highlight, 30% of employers believe that new university graduates do not have the necessary command of basic English, much less the terms and concepts used in a specific field.

The success of a business lies in the capabilities and competencies of its employees and improving your business language skills can help you become a vital asset for your organization.