English in the workplace – the good, the bad, and the reality

advice-advise-advisor-7096English is the fastest-growing language in human history; more than 1.75 billion speak it people worldwide.  Fuelling this trend is the dominance of English in the workplace.  In fact, a report from Cambridge Language Assessment shows that 69% of employers around the world identified English proficiency as significant for their organisation.

In Germany, 18 of the 30 DAX Blue Chip Index companies have English as the company’s official language.  One of these is Volkswagen – a company whose name alone implies an inherent ‘German-ness’.  That did not prevent the company from changing its official language to English in 2016.   Siemens … Read the rest

New year, new language skills

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I’ve been living in Germany now for 18 months and my German language skills are OK. I can understand about 80 per cent of what’s being said, both on TV and in real life.  However, when I open my mouth to speak, the vocabulary and grammar rules in my head seem to disappear.  Don’t get me wrong – people definitely understand me.  But just being understood is not enough.

Sound familiar?

New-Year_s-ResolutionsBefore moving to Frankfurt, I took German at a language school in London twice a week for over a year.  During that time, I saw real progress.  I was … Read the rest