Today’s business leaders must be prepared to embrace multiculturalism whether it exists across the globe, in their own city or down the street. Most management gurus conclude that the increasing diversity in American workplaces will be one of the greatest challenges that businesses confront soon. This is because embracing multiculturalism demands that business leaders become adept in managing multicultural communication in cross-cultural workplaces and markets.
Language Barriers in the Workplace
Cross-cultural communication includes the written, verbal, non-verbal communication and active listening between two or more people from different cultural backgrounds. One of the most obvious cross-cultural communication challenges will be managing multicultural communication in workplaces and marketplaces. Language barriers are even greater obstacles in manufacturing settings, hospitals, legal settings, government facilities, and other public workplaces where accurate and timely communication is a necessity and errors can be disastrous.
To accommodate the demands of cross-cultural communication, businesses and government agencies are starting their own translation departments and forming alliances with translation agencies. Large hospitals now employee Spanish, Arabic and Chinese translators who assist in communications between doctors and patients. Many hospitals also have programs that train bilingual individuals to become volunteer interpreters. However, most hospitals still rely on bilingual relatives of non-English speaking patients.
Overcoming Cross Cultural Barriers
The difficulties that hospitals face are very similar to those that other businesses and organizations confront. Service businesses such as financial institutions, restaurants and hotels, real estate agencies, investment brokerages, insurance agents, law firms, retailers and manufacturers also face challenges when communicating with customers and employees who cannot speak English or speak English as a second language.
To meet the needs of today’s businesses, companies like 24 Hour Translation Services offers translation services in over 40 languages. Our expert translators all have advanced degrees in the languages that they translate into and a minimum of 5 years of professional translation experience. Because our translators have advanced degrees, training and certifications they are comfortable translating legal, technical, financial, medical, managerial and educational related documents.