The Middle Manager

Surviving & Thriving as a Leader

The Value of Language

Did you know that there are over 6,700 languages spoken around the world? There’s nothing that compares to being able to speak to someone in their native, ‘mother’ tongue. Even people who speak multiple languages will canstockphoto10146601revert to the language of their birth when they become passionate about something.

But there’s more than one kind of language. If you are an IT professional, a medical doctor, a physicist, or a business person then you have a specialized language you speak to pass on ideas specific to your industry. If you’re an IT professional you often need to be bilingual, with knowledge of both the IT and business dialects.

To be successful in business it is critical that you become proficient in the language of your customer. If you come from a strong technical background it can be very difficult to make that transition. As you grow into higher levels of management it becomes extremely important that you do more than just simply understand the language of the busines; you’ll need to know how to translate that business language into something your technology teams can respond to and understand.

How do you start the process of learning a new language? Like with a spoken language it can be done. First, take advantage of any networking opportunities that are available in your chosen business. Meet and speak to professionals in that arena and find out what kinds of books and publications they enjoy reading. With time and effort you’ll be speaking a new language in no time!

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