The USA, like most parts of the advanced world, is multi-cultural and multi-lingual. Our booming economy and thriving employment market attract people from all over the world and, whilst English is still the language most commonly spoken, the USA has a burgeoning job market for fluent speakers of other languages.
Thus, learning a second language will undoubtedly boost your job prospects. A recent YouGov survey revealed that 58 per cent of adults believe that learning a second language would help their career, but fewer than one in four adults speak more than their native language.
With that in mind, below, we are going to take a look at some of the different industries whereby learning another language would really help you to propel your career prospects, as well as discussing some of the most popular languages to learn.
Top industries requiring language skills
There is quite a range of industries where multi-lingual skills are an advantage, some of which are obvious and some not so obvious. The biggest sector is in translating, interpreting and teaching, and there are tools like Text Mechanic to assist with this. You could find yourself working with the police service, the healthcare sector, local authorities or social services, to name just a few areas where translation services are needed.
The sales and customer service sectors need linguists to deal with customers who may not have English as a first language. Other industry sectors include recruitment, banking, marketing and advertising, I.T. and sales. In almost every industry in the USA today you will find a need for people who can speak other languages. Many companies look to young managers with language skills so that they can work efficiently in an international economy.
In schools or adult education, where English can be a second language for many pupils, you will need the ability to speak the language of the students in order to teach them English. Interpretation positions in the educational environment are available too.
Which languages are most in-demand?
German, French, Dutch and Swedish are highly in demand, closely followed by Danish, Spanish, Italian and Norwegian. Anyone dealing with companies in the USA and Latin American countries will be highly valued for their ability to speak Spanish. Asian and Middle Eastern language speakers are also much needed. Investors from Arabic speaking countries have a considerable presence in the USA as well, so there are many different opportunities and plenty of languages that have a lot of appeal.
With the rapid increase in globalisation has come a huge rise in multinational businesses and internet-based companies. With all that in mind, why not make the best use of your language skills? If you are currently thinking about different ways to enhance your career prospects, it certainly makes a lot of sense to learn a second language. This can help you to standout from other candidates for the job in question.