In international business, a favorable outcome is possible only when using effective international communication skills. Throughout the world, international managers have accepted the idea that professional communications should be direct, polite, calm and candid. The best professional communicators expend considerable effort to become competent writers and speakers in their native language. Becoming a good professional international communicator generally requires many years of practice. But the effort, time and focus that go into becoming a strong professional communicator bring great rewards and satisfaction.
Ensuring that your international communication is received and interpreted correctly in all areas of business communication is essential for several reasons:
1. To translate your content correctly. The translation services and interpreting firms that you hire are more likely to translate your content accurately and professionally in the tone and style that you intended than non-professional translators.
2. To build relations. The method, style and words you choose to communicate your message influence those you communicate with. It’s critical to use correct, appropriate and accurate language and information to foster trusting relationships.
3. To convey thoughts correctly. The receiver should never have to guess the communicator’s thoughts and intentions. Vague language and conflicting tones invite misunderstandings.
4. To strengthen corporate image. Messages that are professionally delivered in the appropriate format, as well as easy to understand, signal professionalism and build others’ confidence in your company. Spelling and grammar errors, confusing text and communication that lacks basic fundamentals weaken a company’s image.
Some people seem to be born with international communication skills. In fact, writing and speaking come so naturally that they never have to learn formal language rules. For them, communicating professionally is automatic, without the need to consistently think about the correct way to write or say something. However, many people make grammar and spelling errors, choose the wrong words, or construct garbled sentences because they are careless or don’t know the rules. To become better communicators, these people should learn to recognize and understand the errors they make and intentionally commit to correcting them by reviewing the parts of speech, common grammatical and usage rules, and principles of organization for communicating effectively. Also they should keep a dictionary close at hand—and use it.
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