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Better English for Better Employment Opportunities

Authors:
  • sarojini naidu govt. girls pg autonomous college bhopal(M.P.)
Article

Better English for Better Employment Opportunities

Abstract

Enhanced communication skills in English can result to not only an improved social life, but also better job opportunities in the future. From job interviews to the actual professional world, communication skills are very crucial, and being proficient in English means being able to communicate clearly and effectively. In job interviews, most interviewers conduct interviews in English. Interviewers quickly make judgments and give great importance to first impressions. Poor skills in the language can mean smaller chances of landing a job. On the other hand, being proficient in the language can help one leave a good first impression which means higher chances of getting the position one is applying for. English is the most commonly used language in the business world. Most job interviews are done in English. Most business contracts are written in English. Handling international business deals require effective skills in English. English is the preferred business language because it is an exact language. It allows a person to say what he or she wants to say without having to argue about the meaning. However, using incorrect tenses, prepositions, and the like will make one’s statement less accurate. So in order to have an increased competence in the professional world, one should have a very good grasp of the English language.
International Journal of Multidisciplinary Approach
and Studies ISSN NO:: 2348 537X
Volume 01, No.4, July - Aug 2014
Page : 93
Better English for Better Employment Opportunities
Dr. Meenu Pandey* & Dr. Prabhat Pandey**
Associate Professor, Department of Humanities, LNCT , Bhopal.
Librarian and Head, Sarojini Naidu Govt. Girls (Auto) PG College, Bhopal
ABSTRACT:
Enhanced communication skills in English can result to not only an improved social life, but
also better job opportunities in the future. From job interviews to the actual professional
world, communication skills are very crucial, and being proficient in English means being
able to communicate clearly and effectively. In job interviews, most interviewers conduct
interviews in English. Interviewers quickly make judgments and give great importance to first
impressions. Poor skills in the language can mean smaller chances of landing a job. On the
other hand, being proficient in the language can help one leave a good first impression which
means higher chances of getting the position one is applying for. English is the most
commonly used language in the business world. Most job interviews are done in English.
Most business contracts are written in English. Handling international business deals require
effective skills in English. English is the preferred business language because it is an exact
language. It allows a person to say what he or she wants to say without having to argue
about the meaning. However, using incorrect tenses, prepositions, and the like will make
one’s statement less accurate. So in order to have an increased competence in the
professional world, one should have a very good grasp of the English language.
Even companies that offer jobs not involving office work require applicants to take an
English language proficiency test. Not being skillful in English does not mean that one will
not succeed in the professional world, but having sufficient knowledge of the language and
the skills needed for one’s job will definitely help one fare well in any profession.
INTRODUCTION
Today the world and our country in particular is witnessing a third industrial revolution
namely communication revolution. This in turn is having a major impact in our business and
International Journal of Multidisciplinary Approach
and Studies ISSN NO:: 2348 537X
Volume 01, No.4, July - Aug 2014
Page : 94
workplace. In the international commercial sphere English has become lingua-franca of the
business world irrespective of geographical, social, political or religious differences. It is
being recognized as one of the six official languages of the United Nations. Earlier people
used to get a job if they possessed expertise in their respective fields but in the current era the
specific skills should be complemented with communication skills. The need for giving
emphasis on the English communication development is of utmost importance in the present
scenario with an objective to make the job aspirants gainfully employed. This study aims to
highlight the importance of English in multiple sectors which finally cater to the need of
employability.
In the last few years, thanks to jobs becoming global, the importance of English has increased
manifold. It has over the years become an important medium of communication, both at the
international and intra-national levels. The importance of spoken English is even more,
because there are many cases where one knows his subject well, but fails to communicate it
properly. The practice of spoken English, therefore, is quite essential. Learning English in a
country where it is not a native language opens a number of opportunities for the individual.
In today‟s corporate world, the need for effective communication has been recognized and
accepted more than the technical knowledge.
The language of the corporate world is English. An individual can make strides in the
management ladder if he/she can speak English fluently. If your English is poor, even though
with brilliant business ideas, you may still find yourself languishing at the bottom of the
management LADDER. Your productivity will drop over a period of time since you will find
difficulty in expressing your brilliant ideas. Those who can speak good English will probably
usurp your ideas and get the credit for all the hard work you did to get the idea working. So
there are immense opportunities for English Language trainer to train people in
communicative English for different purposes like group discussions, interviews, oral
presentations, report writing, writing letters etc. English language trainers generally handle
individuals‟ abilities to frame grammatically correct sentences or his lack of vocabulary, fear
of speaking to groups of people, and ineffective presentation skills. Here are a few skills that
an English language trainer tends to teach.
International Journal of Multidisciplinary Approach
and Studies ISSN NO:: 2348 537X
Volume 01, No.4, July - Aug 2014
Page : 95
STANDARD ENGLISH
The pronunciation of Indian English varies from region to region according to the influence
of one‟s vernacular. So the questions that arise are what is the standard form of English Is it
British English Or American English Or Indian English, with its variety due to the strong
influence of regional languages. Till the time of globalisation, British English was considered
as Standard English. But the strength of the American economy, its advancement in science
and technology, its power over other countries and the emergence and popularity of e-
language, American English is largely followed by the tech savvy countries as well as the
countries which are dependent on technologies of these.
TOOL FOR EMPLOYABILITY
India too has contributed a good number of vocabularies to the modern English language and
which have become a part of standard dictionaries. As the private sector companies are
gaining ground and becoming more competitive due to changed world economy, the
employees are always kept on their toes. It is like either you work hard and show your
performance or perish for not taking care of your professional growth. The ability to use a
language efficiently is very much required to remain employable. What is employability:it is
the ability to remain employable as a result of the relevant skills one possesses.
Communication skills are very much essential for one‟s professional growth. The ability to
express fluently in both written as well as oral form of language is very much essential for the
career growth.
As it is stated above, English being the most commonly used language in the corporate world;
the knowledge of English is one of the most important employability skills. Knowledge of
English is much sought after in the corporate world. Proper English does not mean only the
ability to make grammatically correct sentences. It means other related skills for effective
communication like presentation skills, convincing and negotiation skills and interpersonal
skills using that language.
International Journal of Multidisciplinary Approach
and Studies ISSN NO:: 2348 537X
Volume 01, No.4, July - Aug 2014
Page : 96
EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION SKILLS IN ENGLISH
Effective communication skills include oral Skills for public speaking, presentations,
negotiating, conflict resolutions, knowledge-sharing; Writing Skills for preparing reports,
proposals, instruction manuals, writing memos, notices, official correspondence etc. It also
includes a combination of verbal and non-verbal skills marked with proper and distinct
articulation, appropriate pause, and voice modulation. If the medium of communication is
English, certain amount of proficiency is needed in it. As English for us is a second language
and not our mother tongue, a constant practice at home, followed by language-lab sessions, is
the need of the hour. Those institutes which want their students to get placed in MNCs and
reputed companies, must give this an urgent thought. It is here that an English Language
Trainer has a role to play. Quality job depends as much on knowledge of the respective
subject as on good communication skills.
ROLE OF SOFT SKILLS IN EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION
It is true that communication skills tops the list of employability parameter, however other
skills such as intrapersonal and interpersonal skills have become increasingly important.
Surveys have shown that out of a large number of professionals being produced every year,
only 10% are employable in various industries. The candidates are unsuitable because they
lag behind in the soft skills which are essential for employability.
Intrapersonal traits include the following:
• Time management
• Attitude
• Responsibility
• Ethics, integrity and values
• Self confidence and courage
• Consistency
Interpersonal traits include the following:
• Self awareness
International Journal of Multidisciplinary Approach
and Studies ISSN NO:: 2348 537X
Volume 01, No.4, July - Aug 2014
Page : 97
• Teamwork
•Communication and networking
• Empathy and listening skills
•Problem solving and troubleshooting
• Leadership
Non-Verbal Communication
There‟s a saying in English that „Silence speaks a lot‟. There should always be a congruity
between verbal and non-verbal communication. The following attributes are some of the
important aspects of non-verbal communication
Eye Contact
Facial Expressions
Gestures
Posture and Body Orientation
We can understand that the personality traits and soft skills have a role that is central to one‟s
career .In conjunction with hard skills and domain expertise, it plays an important role not
only in getting prepared for interviews but also for subsequent career development.
JOB SCENARIO SHOWS SIGNS OF IMPROVEMENT IN INDIA.
The Indian professional job market has improved since the start of this year, with 59 per cent
ofIndian companies are currently recruiting at senior level, up 19 per cent over the beginning
of the year, a survey says.
According to multi-national recruitment firm Antal International's Antal Global Snapshot'
survey, Employment trends has found that the professional job market in India as well as
globally has improved since the start of 2013”.
International Journal of Multidisciplinary Approach
and Studies ISSN NO:: 2348 537X
Volume 01, No.4, July - Aug 2014
Page : 98
Language skills which needs to be acquired for business purpose
In the English speaking world „language proficiency is the ability to listen, read, write and
speak Standard English in a business like way‟.
Listening is often a neglected skill. This should not however be the case because in
our everyday life, active listening is very important. Studies have revealed that
business people spend 45% of their working time listening.
In everyday business world, we have to read numerous texts ranging from journals, e-
mails, reports and books. One requires grasping the meaning of what he reads and
analyzing in details.
None of us can deny the need of having the important documents in the written form.
In official work written communication serves as an important documentation which
is permanent and can be retrieved. Business letters memos, proposals, brochure,
manuals, notices, bulletins etc are time and again required to be drafted in an
organization.
• Possessing good command over English language in terms of speaking is found wanting
in business houses. Nowadays companies look up for people who can interact
successfully and make significant contributions during group-discussions,
presentations and seminars.
Following is the list of the employer ratings from the job outlook 2013 report:
Skill/Quality
Ability to verbally communicate with persons inside and outside
the organization.
Ability to work in a team structure
Ability to make decisions and solve problems.
Ability to plan, organize, and prioritize work.
Ability to obtain and process information.
Ability to analyze quantitative data.
International Journal of Multidisciplinary Approach
and Studies ISSN NO:: 2348 537X
Volume 01, No.4, July - Aug 2014
Page : 99
Technical knowledge related to the job.
Proficiency with computer software programs.
Ability to create and/or edit written reports.
Ability to sell or influence others.
Personal branding
Flexibility
Productivity improvement
CONCLUSION
English as a language plays a vital role in shaping one‟s personality. Starting from academia
to industry the necessity of English is inevitable. The need of the hour is to have certain
modifications in the education system which will address the needs of the changing economy
and take suitable measures at providing mandatory training in communicative English with a
view to have the youngsters gainfully employed. This will ultimately benefit all the
stakeholders, industry, government and economy by increasing the productivity and resulting
in a higher GDP of the nation.
WORKS CITED:
i. Barun K. Mitra: Personality Development and Soft skills
ii. C. Ramakanta Sharma: Importance of Communication
iii. Dr. N.K.Mehta and Dr.D.Mehta: Importance of English and CAI on outsourcing, ELT
Weekly issue #26
iv. India Today: Dated April 10, 2011
International Journal of Multidisciplinary Approach
and Studies ISSN NO:: 2348 537X
Volume 01, No.4, July - Aug 2014
Page : 100
v. Meenakshi Raman and Sangeeta Sharma: A textbook on Technical Communication-
Principles and Practice, (2ndEdition),Oxford University Press, 2012
vi. Prof M.S.Ananth, Director, IIT Madras: The changing environment of higher education
andsome India centric Concerns.
vii. Report of working group on engineering education: National Knowledge commission,
February,2008
viii. http://www.employmentnews.gov.in/CAREER-IN-ENGLISH-LANGUAGE-
TRAINING.asp
ix. http://www.naceweb.org/s10242012/skills-abilities-qualities-new-hires/
x. http://articles.economictimes.indiatimes.com/2013-06-04/news/39740600_1_ceo-tony-
goodwin-antal-international-managerial-and-professional-level
http://planetphilippines.com/current-affairs/english-proficiency-is-key-to-landing-a-job
xi. http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/05/16/uk-business-language-
idUSLNE84F02X20120516
xii. http://www.indiastudychannel.com/resources/52922-Why-working-knowledge-
English.aspx
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