In our interconnected world, the lines between countries, cultures, and continents are becoming increasingly blurred. It’s possible to have calls or meetings with teams in China, colleagues in Peru, or clients in Spain all in a working day. But within this business environment, language isn’t just a means of communication — it’s a way of making connections.
So whether you need to brush up on your English, tap into Indonesian, or pick up the Portuguese basics, here are a few reasons why language learning tools are invaluable to your business…
1. Teamwork Makes the Dream Work
Nothing says “collaboration” more than learning a new language. Many companies across the world are adjusting their internal policies to make room for an international workforce and cater to employees from many different nationalities.
Scout24 is an online marketplace that serves as a guide to help consumers make informed decisions when it comes to relocating. The company grew quickly, and simultaneously so did the number of international employees. The company’s language-learning manager soon found that people were struggling to communicate and noticed an increase in fractures and misunderstandings within teams. So Scout24 trialed Babbel as a means to unite company culture and foster an inclusive and adhesive spirit.
After several months, the company achieved their goal, streamlining communication and boosting the motivation and confidence of their employees. Jesko Schäfermann, Vice President of People, Organisation & Culture said, “A modern tool like Babbel increases our employees intercultural understanding and their enthusiasm for learning.” Thanks, Jesko!
2. Relocating Abroad
There are few things more life-changing than relocating for work. And when the opportunity arises, Babbel is there to support you all the way. Carry us around in your pocket throughout your new adventure — we’ll be there to help you order tacos in Mexico City, pastel de natas in Lisbon, or fish ‘n chips in England.
Last year Babbel teamed up with ESMT Berlin, an international business school that trains students from all over the world. Even though all programs are taught in English, the school encourages students to learn German to give them greater access to the culture and to encourage and motivate them to live in Germany once the course is over. We know German isn’t an easy language, but our flexible, bite-size lessons had the students saying “Ich liebe Berlin” in no time!
3. Business Trips
Traveling abroad can be stressful, especially without the language tools needed to order a coffee, let alone pitch a presentation. Besides, business trips are about more than just meetings — they’re an opportunity to connect, network, and build relationships. So being on the same language page is vital to successful business travel.
Insight is a leading provider in IT products and services. Their Learning Manager chose Babbel as the best format to improve employee competency and efficiency in English. The team were able to start at their individual levels and select the appropriate lessons within the language app. As the trial continued they were able to use their new language skills in meetings abroad, building new relationships with international clients, and strengthening their communication within meetings. Nice work, Insight!
4. Customer Service
Strong communication and mutual understanding is at the forefront of good customer service. Without it the customer feels frustrated and the employee can feel demotivated. That’s why introducing language learning to the customer service team can be hugely beneficial to your business.
For example, we worked alongside food services and facilities management company Sodexo to help solve a unique problem. The company is one of the world’s largest multinational corporations — they employ over 420,000 people of over 120 nationalities. The two core languages used to communicate within Sodexo are Spanish and English. Sodexo’s challenge was that front-line employees had low proficiency in English and struggled to communicate with customers, while some of the managers had a poor grasp of Spanish and so couldn’t communicate with their teams.
And that’s where Babbel came in. Our flexible, personalized lessons were able to address the diverse language issues of their employees, so in just one contract the entire company could work on their individual needs. After several months of usage, staff were communicating much better with customers — and the managers were able to say “Bien hecho, team!”
5. International meetings
Of course, language learning is about strong communication — but it’s also about feeling comfortable in a different country. That’s why Babbel makes the perfect travel companion because we get our learners speaking confidently in no time. Plus our flexible and personalized lessons can be used offline, so down-time on a plane can be used to brush up on skills.
Recently Babbel came to the rescue of the THW (Federal Agency for Technical Relief), Germany’s official civil and catastrophe protection organization. Because they often work in international settings, language learning is of utmost importance to the organization as they need proficient English in order to communicate with international rescue services and civilians. Klaus Buchmüller, THW’s Head of International Operations, was delighted with Babbel’s easy-to-use technology, especially that it can be used offline — a must in disaster areas with no WiFi. THW successfully used our services to improve their English, strengthen their communication skills, and react to emergencies quickly and efficiently. So that basically makes us heroes, too… right?
Interested in introducing language learning into your corporate culture? Contact the Babbel for Business!
Svenja Blessner, Language Learning Expert
Svenja is passionate about language learning trends, product development, and traveling. Having lived and worked in six different countries around the globe, she’s convinced that being able to communicate across languages and cultures is not only the key to the world but also to personal and professional success.