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English is undoubtedly a global language through out the world. It is a well known
language that is required in order to be a qualified worker in a workplace. English is also
known as a trade language whereby all of us use it to communicate when it comes to
business. In this era, it is no longer presume as an alien language because almost most the
world population had accepted the use of English. English communication in a workplace
is an issue that should be highlighted as it would determine whether we could produce a
smart worker that has the ability to speak in English or not. A worker’s proficiency
should be at par with their qualification so that we can expand our business further. As
example, a local farmer would be able to enlarge his business to other west region just by
using his English expert. This is because a person’s attitude is portrayed on how he
handles the negotiation. That is also one of the methods to attract foreigners to invest in
your company investment. Overall, someone’s ability in language would enable him to be
more confident in order to explain or convince the investor. In Malaysia, there are
numerous of local entrepreneurs who have the ability and knowledge to enlarge their
marketing but most of them stuck in the middle of English proficiency. In addition, they
do not realize the importance of English to assist their business in the future. As a
Malaysian, we should be able to have ample knowledge in English so that we can be a
versatile role model who has solid knowledge in our expertise and also English.
Furthermore, as what Faith Hsiao (2005) said, from the theoretical perspective which
supports communicative tasks, language is best learned through interaction.

In the aspect of oral and written, the employers have to ensure that an employee has
both skills so that English would be an interaction medium in a workplace. We have to
prioritize in both aspect so that a worker may communicate orally or in written type. That
is why all of the university students in Malaysia need to pass MUET test in order have a
degree qualification. That is one of the best strategy made by the government in preparing
a versatile and competent worker in future. However, there are many issues regarding
Malaysian’s workers proficiency in English whereby most of them have difficulty to
communicate in English particularly in business-related matters. This is not a new issue
because most of the graduates are unable to speak proficiently and they just excel on
paper. To me, I agree with the statement above because many of the workers do not see
the importance of English in their workplace.

One of the reasons is about insufficient of vocabulary. This happens due to lack of
interest to use English as a speaking medium to interact to one another. It occurs
especially in a field that does not need English to be used in working environment. As
example, in the police force whereby most of the officers are local people and they tend
to use their mother tongue as the first language. They do not see the importance of using
English because it is for them to know, not to practise. This is not a good habit because
the nation needs to deviate the stigma and perception of being traditional only by using
their mother tongue. At the same time, the Malaysians workers have insufficient
vocabulary enrichment in English. This is because they find it difficult to interact by
using English because they do not know the terms used in business. In fact, they prefer to
use broken English that will give impacts to their writing skills. It is good that we have to
attain fluency but we have to gain accuracy at the same time. It would reflect our standard
of English by using it properly.

Other than that, the use of English is not wide because only some selected workers
are assigned to deal with the foreigners in order to discuss about business. The rest of
them would just stay behind and speak a little bit of English sometimes. This is the main
problem whereby most of the Malaysian workers could not able to enrich their
vocabulary and feel afraid to talk in English. At my workplace, almost all of the English
teachers do not want to communicate in English because they feel awkward and afraid of
making mistakes. Nevertheless, the society needs to know that business is a vital industry
to ensure the continuity of rapid economic growth for our country. It is also an alternative
to produce a competent worker so that he can convince the investors after presenting a
paperwork. It is also one of the methods to increase the rate of import export as the
foreign traders feel secure to do trading in Malaysia. That is why the Malaysian workers
need to improve their English and learn more on how to communicate especially when it
comes to business related matters. In the first place, the authorities and the employers
should have seen the importance of English proficiency among the workers.
Moreover, Malaysians tend to have difficulty in communicating in English because
they do not have English surrounding culture. They feel alien to talk in English because
they feel only those who are native speakers can speak. It happens in this country because
all of the workers presume that Malay is the culture of official language and no one wants
to uphold the new culture of using English. In fact, it is difficult for the workers to
assimilate the new culture which is really good to be practised. In order to initiate the
culture of using English, the employers need to find alternatives in order to encourage the
workers to speak in English. For example, the boss could fix a day for English day and
organise English week for them to participate. At the same time, the employers could also
conduct a family day which combine English activities and the could learn indirectly.
This statement is supported by Cheon (2003), “Activities are structured so that all
learners will talk as a means of sharing ideas and opinions, collaborating toward a single
goal, or completing to achieve individual goals”. This is one of the effective steps in
order to enhance English proficiency among the workers. Besides that, an English day
could be executed by asking all the workers to speak basic English on how to
communicate to each other. This is not a mere practice but it should be a habit to all of
them. They can speak in basic English and improve their English day by day. They will
have no problem to speak with the clients and be more confident when everyone is
speaking English. That is why the culture is really important to be implemented as a new
habit in a workplace. Indeed, most of the Malaysian workers have ample understanding in
using English for daily communication. They just need to do it regularly so that they can
practice day by day. At the same time, English speaking culture is a must so that everyone
could gain fluency and accuracy at the same time. This is because they will think twice
before voicing out their opinions as they need to construct correct sentences (Brown,
2001). They can start to speak simple English and develop the language from time to
time. For example, a simple conversation about marketing could lead to other topics and
it has to be done from everybody in the office. That is why it is called a culture. English
speaking culture does not necessary rely on the main posts only as they need to work as a
team to improve on their proficiency level. Again, English medium speaking culture is
one of the most important criteria in order to improve Malaysians difficulty to
communicate in English. The efforts should come from everyone in the office not only
relying on selected experts in English.

Other than that, many workers have limited or no opportunities in order to improve
their English at respective workplace. This is because the administration does not realise
the importance of English for the sake of the company. Most of the workers assume that
English is just a requirement to pass their job interview and they do not necessarily use it
during working hours. In fact, the bosses also care less about English and they have given
particular posts for those who are expert in English as the same persons will negotiate and
deal with clients. This is not a proper way on how to produce a better team for an
excellent company. Nevertheless, the strategies of English development should be based
on the needs and proficiency level of the workers. For example, the administrations
should discuss and start to develop many programs to enhance English level among the
workers. They can conduct a seminar and workshop so that all of the employees would
have the opportunities to learn and improve their English. It is not a mere course to
introduce English but it is also to inculcate English culture in business related
communication. The top position holders should be aware that English is one of the most
effective methods to attract share holders from all around the world. They would feel
more confident if the messages are conveyed clear, confident and explicitly.

Besides that, the workers themselves need to alter the perception of presuming
English as a difficult subject to learn. They have to change their mind set and try to
improve and using English vocabulary day by day. For example, they need to find their
own ways on how to communicate in English. The main matter would be their
enthusiasm towards improving themselves on how to adapt to another language.
Meanwhile, the urgency of using English needs to start from a person. If we feel that we
want to do something, we will be able to to execute in any ways. In this case, Malaysian
workers would try their best to improve their English by reading English newspaper, go
for intensive classes and try to communicate English at home. Indirectly, it will be an
effective practice for them to communicate in English and to gain fluency. After that, the
employers should play their role in order to ensure the continuity of English program to
run by organising exciting activities and practise more. So, this will build up their
background knowledge and might be very helpful to them in order for them to understand
better (Graves, 2006).

Anyways, in this context, all parties should work and cooperate together so that they
will have no problem in using English in communication. It should be a new culture to be
adapted and practised. They have to put on efforts and be consistent in executing the
activities so that it is a continuing learning process and everyone would accept it. In fact,
it is for our own good sake as Malaysia will produce a better economy growth as it would
attract more traders from all over the world for all types of business. We have to be
optimistic that we could alter the change if we have the desire on it. If we stick to this
together, Malaysian workers would not have difficulty to communicate in English in
future. They have to start thinking that the economy growth would also be influenced by
how they convey the messages to each other. All in all, the importance of English should
be prioritised before we make any amendments to make English as a medium of

In conclusion, I strongly agree that Malaysian workers have difficulty in

communicating in English especially related to business matter. There are numerous of
reasons as they themselves need to build their own confidence and change for the
betterment. Indeed, there are many external and internal factors that should be taken into
consideration too. The employers should also play their role in order to develop English
workshop in order to enhance their English proficiency. All in all, all parties should work
together and cooperate to ensure the plans are in line with the objectives. It is undeniable
that English is the world language as all of us should know and it is really vital for
business purposes. Lastly, it is also a symbol of excellence where most of Malaysians are
able to speak in English at any time at anywhere.
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Shaari Awaludin. (1987). The use of tenses in the written English of the Secondary Three
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