Why is it a good idea to learn French with your co-workers?

Happy businesswoman standing in front of a business meeting

The French language is spoken on every continent and is the fifth most popular language on the Internet. It’s the language of diplomacy, an important language in journalism , and in jurisprudence.

It’s an official language of the United Nations, of NATO, of the European Space Agency, of the North American Free Trade Agreement, of World Trade Organization, of the EU, of the Council of Europe and of some important international non-profit organizations such as the Red Cross, Amnesty International, Médecins sans Frontières and Médecins du Monde.

In 2050, French may become the number 1 language in the world especially thanks to its growth on the African continent.

French is an elegant language and it’s perhaps the moment to expand your business to Canada, the West Indies, Polynesia, Europe or Africa. If that’s not the case, maybe it’s the moment to have a common activity which reinforces the relationship between the co-workers of your company.

If you decide to learn French for work or pleasure, it’s a good idea to do it as a team because learning a foreign language is comparable to a work challenge. Indeed, like for some projects, learning French is a long process which requires observation of details and efforts to reach a common goal: being able to communicate with French-speakers.

The French language is a good choice because 45% of the English vocabulary comes from French. It has the same alphabet as English and you will be able to make simple sentences quickly. French is a world language and will remain a world language in the future because it’s really spoken on all the continents like English. Chinese and Spanish, for example, are not spoken in such a broad way as official languages.

Like for any long process, some people want to give up easily but it will be the moment to test the team spirit. If there is solidarity and encouragements, it will be positive for the atmosphere of your company and its projects.

Learning French is also a fun activity. You discover foreign cultures from different continents and you discover sounds that you would never have enunciated in other circumstances.

Little by little, you will become more aware of geography, some traditions, cultural and historical facts and you will become more open-minded and more interesting for your friends, family and customers.

You will become a better person and you will be able to be more flexible with your customers. You will feel more empathy for the people who make efforts to speak your language therefore you will show a better image of your business.

Learning French is not limited to lessons. In order to improve your level and fluidity, you will need to practice in real life: during meet-ups of French-speakers and Francophiles in restaurants and bars, during parties with French songs, during French movie nights… You will meet interesting people who can be important for your personal and professional life.

By highlighting the fact that your team can speak French, you may become more attractive to European companies. Indeed, in Europe, employees often take foreign language classes due to their geo-political situation and because they must continuously adapt to the EU market and globalization. But if you show that you also made efforts to adapt to the others, your company will look smarter and so different than the other American companies.

The fact that most of the Americans do not make the effort to study foreign languages can endanger their society in the future. Let your company be an example for your country and a good surprise for foreign companies.

Make the difference by learning French and be smarter than your competitors!

Emma Franks

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