BP 7

By researching the benefits of knowing a second language in the business world, I hope to discover the mental, financial, and social benefits of being bilingual.  Along with the benefits, I also plan to find disadvantages of bilingualism so I can weigh the benefits of it.  With this research paper, I hope to influence others to go out of their comfort zone and learn a foreign language.  As the business world is becoming more global, and people in many other countries learn multiple languages in school, I feel that the United States will soon encourage schools to implement more language courses.

I searched for sources on ProQuest, Business Source Premier, and well known business websites.  In order to get the most out of my research, I found sources that share the benefits of learning a second language whether that language was Spanish or not.  I found articles that discuss the cognitive benefits of bilingualism, and articles that give specific examples of why knowing another language is important in business careers.  Some of my articles focus on the overall benefits of learning a second or third language, while others specifically present information on how bilingualism can help someone succeed in the business world.

Buchholz, Barbara B. “Bilingual Benefits.” Crain’s Chicago Business 25.21 (2002): SR11. Regional Business News. Web. 25 Feb. 2016.

In volume 25, issue 21 of Crain’s Chicago Business, Barbara Buchholz writes about the benefits of knowing multiple languages in a white collar job in the United States.  Buchholz targets her article, “Bilingual Benefits”, to immigrants from Mexico.  Unlike other articles that I found, in this article the author explains to her audience why it is beneficial to learn English as a second language. 

Buchholz interviews the Rodriguez family, who emigrated from Mexico to Chicago.  The father, Alejandrino, worked in manual labor jobs, so he did not feel the need to learn English.  However, when his children starting working white-collar jobs, they realized the importance of knowing how to read and write English.  The author writes about the cultural tendencies of native Hispanic cultures when it comes to assimilating with the American culture.  Buchholz also discusses how knowing English has helped Carmen Rodriguez in her real estate business.  The fact that she knows Spanish, as well as English, has helped her grow her client base to a much larger size than some of her competitors who only know English.

This article will help me prove why it is beneficial to know multiple languages even when English is not a person’s first language.  I can use Carmen’s personal story to show how being bilingual can help grow one’s business.  Buchholz includes both sides of the assimilation argument in his article, so he is not biased.  This is a reliable source because the article was shared on a well known website, Crain’s Chicago Business. 

Chau, Lisa. “Why You Should Learn Another Language.” US News. U.S.News & World Report, 29 Jan. 2014. Web. 25 Feb. 2016.

In her article, “Why You Should Learn Another Language”, Lisa Chau describes how people who speak more than one language have the upper hand when advancing in the business world.  Chau posted her blog post in the Economic Intelligence section of the USNews website in early 2014.  She has spent many years as a professor at multiple schools teaching business courses and serving as an assistant director for the Tuck School of Business at her alma mater, Dartmouth College.

Chau recommends learning at least one language other than a person’s native language in order to set yourself apart from others and have an advantage in a corporate business career.  In order to convince her readers why it is so beneficial to be polylingual, she shares a story about Ryan McMunn, a CEO who works with people in other countries.  By knowing another language, Chinese in McMunn’s case, he was able to create strong and successful business relationships with business executives and employees in China.  Chau also shares advice from two other business professionals that state why knowing multiple languages is so important.  Along with the men’s personal stories, she includes scientific facts about the cognitive benefits of bilingualism. 

This source is reliable, because Chau gives specific examples of how being bilingual has helped Business professionals succeed, as well as sharing scientific facts.  The article is posted on a well known and reliable news website, and all of Chau’s qualifications are listed at the bottom of the article.  The information the author included in her article will help me write about real world examples in my research paper.

Dolainski, Stephen. “Language Training Improves Global Business at ARCO.” Workforce 76.2 (1997): 38. ProQuest. Web. 17 Feb. 2016.

Originally posted in the magazine Workforce, Stephen Dolainski’s article, “Language Training Improves Global Business at ARCO”, discusses how the implementation of a Mandarin Chinese class at ARCO Products Co. improved the company’s relationship with potential business partners in China.  Dolainski targets his article to readers that might be considering implementing a foreign language class at their business. 

In the article, Dolainski interviews multiple people from ARCO about the class and the benefits that they have seen since it was first offered.  The companies human resources consultant for their international projects, Paula Johnston, decided to offer a class in Mandarin at the company during business hours in order to encourage other employees to proactively learn the language.  At the time of implementation, ARCO was not currently in business with any companies in China, but employees of the company who had traveled to explore opportunities had expressed the difficulty in communication.  Johnston researched which language company would best support ARCO’s needs.  She expressed to Dolainski that she needed a company that was flexible but consistent.  After the 12-week course, Johnston received many positive reviews, and told Dolainski that she has already seen benefits in foreign affairs.

While this article does not go into large detail about the benefits of knowing a foreign language, it does give useful information that I will be able to use in my paper.  Dolainski is a qualified writer and editor, and has worked with many well known companies.  He interviews people who have worked personally with the need and benefits of learning another language, so the article includes reliable stories and facts.

Pelham, Sabra D., and Lise Abrams. “Cognitive Advantages And Disadvantages In Early And Late Bilinguals.” Journal Of Experimental Psychology. Learning, Memory & Cognition 40.2 (2014): 313-325. Business Source Premier. Web. 25 Feb. 2016.

The article “Cognitive Advantages And Disadvantages In Early And Late Bilinguals” was written by Sabra Pelham and Lise Abrams.  It was published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology, and both authors work in the Department of Psychology at the University of Florida.    The Journal of Experimental Psychology is very reliable, and both authors are professors at a well known University, so this article will be a good source for my research paper.

Pelham and Abrams give readers information from previous studies on the cognitive differences between monolinguals and bilinguals.  Unlike other sources that I have found, this article gives disadvantages of being bilingual.  The authors focus their study on people who learned multiple languages at a young age as well as people who learned other languages later in their lives.  For comparison, they also study people who only know their native language.  Pelham and Abrams performed studies on each of these groups, and they shared their results in this article.  They include charts showing the procedures that they used, facts about the people they researched, and the results from their studies.

The authors are very specific in their article, and they present the readers with many details about the benefits and disadvantages of being bilingual.  Since the authors performed the study themselves, everything that they write about is reliable.  The facts that they present in their article will be very helpful when I discuss the disadvantages of being bilingual in my research paper.

Stewart, Vivien. “A World Transformed: How Other Countries Are Preparing Students For The Interconnected World Of The 21St Century.” Phi Delta Kappan 87.3 (2005): 229-232. Academic Search Premier. Web. 17 Feb. 2016.

In “A World Transformed: How Other Countries Are Preparing Students For The Interconnected World Of The 21st Century,” the author, Vivien Stewert, presents information that shows how other countries are preparing students for their future careers.  Stewert argues that college students in the United States may not be as prepared to enter the work force and communicate internationally as student in other countries.  She proves her point by presenting information about schools in Europe, Australia, and Asia.  The article concludes with the author explaining how the United States compares with other countries.

The ideas that Stewert presents in her article could be very beneficial for me to use in my research paper.  By presenting how other countries prepare their students of all ages, not just college students, to be more economically and geographically knowledgeable, the author indirectly proves how the United States is not adequately preparing their students.  For example, while researching Australia’s education system, Stewert found that when “the Australian government decided to engage more deeply with Asia for economic, demographic, and security reasons…the learning of Asian languages increased significantly…[which in the future] clearly will provide economic benefits to Australia.”  This specific fact will help me prove why in today’s day and age it is very beneficial to learn another language before entering the work force.


One thought on “BP 7

  1. Bailey,

    This is a really interesting topic. I know a little Spanish, but I always want to improve my ability to read and speak it, especially after reading this and knowing the benefits of it now.


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