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The role of a foreign language proficiency in the international relations career

If you want to avoid a war, learn a foreign language (Arab saying) Ever since I was a child I was taught to give my best in every situation. I was taught that you cant get something good unless you work hard for it, so Ive tried my best in my early school years, during high school and university, also, to learn more and to achieve more knowledge every year, because I was convinced that it will not be wasted, but very useful when I will grow up. I am now looking at myself and I have to admit that here are very few things I might have done better, but so many other I am proud of. Getting to figure out what I would like to do further in my life wasnt quite a surprise at all, because Ive been realistic in every choice or decision Ive made so far. I am working on improving my skills all the time, I am always trying to achieve new things and until now, I havent chosen the easy way. I had to struggle a bit in order to get what I wanted. Luckily, I had my parents support in all my plans and if it werent for them, especially my father, who encouraged my passion for foreign languages, I wouldnt have been the person I am today. I remember them telling me that all the parents want the best for their children, and want them to have a better life than they had. I cant tell how much of these words I understood back then, but now I know what they meant. When my parents were in school, they didnt get too many options. They couldnt make too many decisions for themselves because there was always someone else who interfered with their choices: parents, other relatives or even the political system; so their generation wasnt as privileged as ours, where we can take advantage of so many opportunities and choose whats best and suitable for us, because we have so many things that could help us in our

personal or professional development. We have the internet, plenty of courses to develop abilities and skills, we have new technologies and more open doors than they had. We just have to learn how to see them and use them, especially when talking about career. Career is a very important subject in ones life, given the fact that it represents one of the reasons why people seek it for fulfillment. I am pretty sure, no matter how many people would try to convince me the opposite, that its what makes people interact and develop, the same way school and studies do. When choosing a career path it is essential to make sure that you have the right mains in order to commit to it and make it worth your work and devotion. You also have to make sure you have the necessary tools, also, such as communication skills, the ability to work under pressure, self-confidence and responsibility. Self-confidence is not only for the job related field, but also in every persons daily life. It is proven that people who feel more confident about themselves have more chances of succeeding than those who question their confidence. It gives you attitude, it gives you strength and it can open doors if handled in a decent manner. Working under pressure, on the other hand, is more like a brain exercise which every person should take from time to time. It needs concentration, motivation and positive thinking. You need to prioritize tasks, to pay attention to details and to get everything done when dealing with a deadline. The ability of communicating with the others is something all the people should have, especially when someone is involved in a working environment, because if we can choose the people we have around in our personal life, you dont always get to choose too much the people you are working with, or if you do get the chance of choosing them, you have to adapt to a certain style, in order for all involved to feel comfortable. One of the main criteria for people to get along well and communicate in an efficient manner is talking the same language. In a multilinguistic environment, such as Europe for example, it is difficult to create work relations among people of different cultural and national backgrounds. Language is mankind's most important means of communication.

It plays an irreplaceable role in national economic life and in formation of the national economic system. Hence, the needs of finding a suitable common form of speaking and expression, so that people from different countries to understand each other and to be able to work together. I am not referring about small talks, about asking for directions or the usual phrases people learn when only visiting a foreign country. I am talking about language proficiency, which is actually, a persons ability of using a foreign language for plenty of purposes. The most relevant example of foreign language that helps people from different countries to understand each other and especially work together, is English. Being able to speak a foreign language, especially English, is the key to many doors. English language is the most important language, the most spoken official language, being used by more than 1/3 of the worlds population. It is the basic international language in communication, internet, business, commerce, entertainment, IT and one of the most important, diplomacy. The influence of the United States and Great Britain on political affairs and international relations for the past 100 years has ensured the proliferation and acceptance of English as the main spoken language in many countries. Therefore, being an English language speaker increases your chances to get a better career, to relocate to another country, to study or work abroad; as for companies, multilingual employees can facilitate their entrance on European and world markets. In the international relations field, it is even more important to speak at least one foreign language; the term international is the one that requires strong communication skills and language proficiency. But the relations discussed hold not only between countries or governments but also between legal citizens, firms and organizations. Such relations include relations in the fields of politics, economy, culture and science. Some businesses that deal with international clients and suppliers rely on English-speaking employees to help with day-to-day operations to interpret, translate and communicate directly with English-speaking customers and clients. Being fluent in English can improve employment opportunities. It is clear that a foreign language, besides its objective existence, actually represents a passport for understanding other relations. The effectiveness and efficiency

of global communication depends particularly on the English language, since most of the worlds politicians and diplomats speak English fluently. It is the primary language used in international affairs, and there is no going back. English is now firmly entrenched as the international language and has established its importance. In the international context, it is desirable to avoid misunderstandings, to be able to listen, to comprehend, and to express your opinions in a diplomatic manner. It is also important because all the official documents and papers in the international relations field are in English. That is why it is mandatory to have good knowledge of spelling, grammar and oral speaking skills, to not be misinterpreted and to maintain the official and right meaning of the words you are using. A working knowledge of English is important for diplomats and high-ranking officials in such major countries as Germany, Japan, France, South Korea, Brazil, Italy, and Russia so they can better understand the nuance and craft of global affairs and international diplomacy. An Arab saying is very good in illustrating the importance of learning foreign languages: If you want to avoid a war, learn a foreign language. It means that the language is the main tool in creating relations, in getting cultures together, and also in integrating immigrants from non-English-speaking countries in the society and in the work field, and it proves professionalism and competence, respect and understanding the others. I cant say if there is anyone who has reached the apogee of language proficiency, not even its native speakers. It is a huge difference between speaking a foreign language and reaching the proficiency level. Learning a foreign language is a life commitment to it, where one is always learning new words, phrases and meanings, and working in an international environment directly implies getting information about the social, political and economical issues about other countries, too, and obviously expressing them in such a manner so that everybody else understands them. Knowing English opens job and employment opportunities in many countries and markets. In today's global marketplace, you need to speak English to negotiate deals with international partners and read international contracts. Those who speak good English have a significant advantage when working with customers and clients around the world.

Multilateral institutions and agencies in the four United Nation cities of New York, Vienna, The Hague and Geneva recruit professionals with multilingual skills but also expect the candidates to have good English-speaking skills. In such a diverse society and continuous globalization, a good command of an international language is the key of international integration success and it should be a part of every persons education, regarding the fact that the European citizens are encouraged to speak at least two adoption languages besides their mother language. Of course, other languages that are not very common among other people than natives, such as Finnish, Swedish, Arabic, Hindi, Japanese, Russian or Chinese, represent a huge asset in recruiting processes especially when talking about international relations.