If there is one thing we can be certain about in the workplace today, it is that it is more diverse than ever before. Many languages and cultures make up today’s workplace demographics, and this has had a positive impact on business productivity and success. When perceived as a blessing rather than a threat, cultural diversity in the workplace is an excellent tool for growth.
Benefits of multiple languages in the workplace
Multiculturalism is important in the workplace because it helps create cultural awareness, togetherness and connectivity among team members. When you are regularly exposed to different cultural norms and views develop new ways of thinking, you are able to move outside the bubble of what is familiar to you, and take in what other team members are offering.
In my observations, this is beneficial when problems come up because when there is more diversity, there are more opportunities for finding a solution or a better method of doing things. Having many different viewpoints thrown together in the workplace enables more and better solutions to be realised.
A business that has a culturally diverse team achieves more success than competitors with a smaller selection of culture. For example, having multiple languages in the workplace offers more opportunities for advertising and promotions, allowing your business to expand its target market to include a wider range of the population.
Improving employee relations and creating understanding
You are more likely to develop patience, tolerance and acceptance in the workplace when you are regularly exposed to different viewpoints to your own, and cultures that are different to your own perceived idea of other cultures and peoples.
One of the biggest benefits of working in a culturally diverse workplace is that you must develop a certain level of understanding and patience. At first you may be annoyed that someone requires a translator, or that they cannot speak your language as well as you, but when you work with different people every day you learn to be more patient. Furthermore, when given the chance, you learn that these people are important team members that you cannot do without!