Make Time for Language Learning and Kick-Start your Bilingual Career

If you’re already in work, finding the extra time to improve your language skills can be a big ask. It’s been widely reported just how beneficial second language fluency can be, but finding the time to boost your bilingualism while trying to earn a living elsewhere requires a little extra motivation.

There’s currently a shortage of the language skills that are necessary to succeed in international fields like business, security, finance and politics. However, those certainly aren’t the only opportunities that exist for bilingual speakers in the UK. Bilingualism is one of the most sought-after skills in almost every major industry, from healthcare and hospitality to marketing, customer services, engineering and more.

So, if you want to boost your career and your earning potential, it’s crucial you act quickly and make the time to improve your language skills whenever you can. Here are our top tips to get you bilingual job-ready while already in work…

  1. Study first thing in the morning and last thing at night

Little and often is the key to improving your language skills in the most efficient way. All it takes is 25-30 minutes per day, which means even the busiest workers can find time in their schedules, no matter how crazy they may be.

The most effective way to spend this time is to split it between first thing in the morning and last thing at night. Studying just before you go to sleep can not only enhance your slumber, but it also gives your brain a chance to interpret, consolidate and store new experiences and information as you sleep. By studying just before you sleep, you put your new language skills at the front of the consolidation queue.

Repetition, as you no doubt know, is one of the most important aspects of language acquisition. Taking ten minutes every morning to review the language lessons from the night before will refresh the vocabulary, phrases and structures you learnt and lock them away in your long-term memory.

2. Harnessing those hidden moments

Making the most of those otherwise meaningless scraps of time you waste throughout the day is a great way for busy professionals to boost their language skills. Even if it’s just five or ten minutes spent sitting on the train, waiting for a bus, jogging, driving, cooking or simply walking to the shops, this is the time you could easily spend brushing up on your skills.

Listening to audio recordings is one of the best ways to make the most of those hidden moments. Not only does it easily fit into a busy schedule, but it’s also an effective way to improve your skills.

3. Make the most of modern technology

When time is of the essence, technology is one of the most powerful weapons in a language learner’s armoury. Conversation exchange, an online tool that allows you to come together with native speakers from around the world, is a great way to share a mutually beneficial conversation. When you already speak a foreign language to a high level, this can give you the extra 5 or 10 percent you need.

4. Listen to music and watch foreign language films

When you’re already working, giving up your downtime is something you’ll be reluctant to do. The good news is that, in the modern world, the constant reinforcement you need is available with the click of a button, whether you head to YouTube to listen to foreign language tunes or take in the latest film. There are some fantastic foreign language films out there that will fine-tune your skills and introduce you to new accents, phrases, and grammar patterns, all while being entertained. What better way to boost your skills?

Now to find bilingual work

Once your second language skills are up to scratch, you’re ready to kick-start your bilingual career. Simply browse our current vacancies and apply online. Alternatively, send us your CV or give us a call on 02392 987 765 to discuss the bilingual role you’re looking for.

Bilingual Job News from Around the Web

In this edition of the Linguistica Recruitment blog, we’re bringing you a rundown of the latest bilingual job news stories you may have missed. We’re already one month into 2017 and it’s already shaping up to be a busy year in the world of bilingual recruitment, particularly with all the Brexit hoo-ha out there in the ether. So, we’ve scoured the worldwide web to keep you up to speed.

France to lure London finance workers to Paris

There has been much discussion about how Brexit will impact the capital’s thriving financial sector, with speculation that some of The City’s biggest banks could shift their operations abroad. French authorities are hoping to capitalise on this uncertainty by hosting a London roadshow to woo some of our best financial minds.

Germany is also on the charm offensive, with senior regulators meeting representatives from some of the world’s biggest banks to explain how they could move business to Europe’s biggest economy once Britain leaves the EU.

Beyond the financial sector, Paris has also been boosted by an influx of investment in its tech sector, which could lead to a number of opportunities for tech specialists with fluency in French. Facebook has recently chosen the French capital as the location for its first ever start-up incubator in a move which will attract tech entrepreneurs from all over the world.

Europe’s first bilingual English-Chinese school opens in London

Parents who want to ‘prepare their children for the new century’, and also have quite a bit of cash, can now send their little learners to Europe’s first English-Chinese school. Kensington Wade, a dual-language, independent prep school, is set to open next year and will teach children as young as one Chinese.

Students will be taught in both English and Chinese, with lessons split 50-50. Children will arrive at the school with different levels of Chinese language skills, but the school will not segregate pupils by ability. Instead, it will adopt a traditional Chinese approach that assumes everyone will achieve the same standard.

News of the school’s opening comes amid renewed emphasis from the UK government on the importance of Chinese as a second language to prepare future generations for the global jobs market.

Being bilingual could combat cognitive ageing

We’ve long known that being bilingual can benefit your brain in a number of different ways, from boosting your memory to improving your problem solving skills. But now new research from the Université de Montréal has found that bilingual brains are actually more efficient, and this increased efficiency could have benefits for our brains in later life.

The study tested groups of bilingual and monolingual senior citizens on how they performed certain tasks that involved focusing on visual information while having to avoid spatial information. The bilinguals showed higher connectivity between visual processing areas located at the back of the brain and used fewer regions of the brain to complete the task.

It is thought that after years of daily practice managing interference between two languages, bilinguals become experts at selecting relevant information and ignoring anything that can distract from a task. This efficiency of thought reduces the brain power being used and can slow the effects of cognitive ageing.

Do you have any more bilingual stories to share with our readers? Please get in touch with us on Facebook to share your stories. Alternatively, please take a look at our current vacancies online.