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Why native English speakers fail to be understood in English – and lose out in global business

Resented, mistrusted and misunderstood – do native English speakers risk being marginalised in international business?

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This article provides great insight as to why "international English" does not exist, and why localization of language is so important in business. We may think we are speaking the same English, but we truly are not.  How do we solve this problem? That’s a good question. I don’t know that providing language lessons that improve the skills of those who use English as a second language is the solution necessarily. English is constantly evolving, even within native speakers, and native speakers from different countries don’t even speak the same English, which makes the situation more complicated.  One of the subjects of the story describes translating English into English, and back again. I’ve had to do that with my Spanish speaking in-laws many times, so I understand what he was talking about!  


What do you think is the solution, if there is one?  Include your comments below. 


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Danielle M. Villegas is a technical communicator who currently employed at Cox Automotive, Inc., and freelances as her own technical communications consultancy, Dair Communications. She has worked at the International Refugee Committee, MetLife, Novo Nordisk, BASF North America, Merck, and Deloitte, with a background in content strategy, web content management, social media, project management, e-learning, and client services. Danielle is best known in the technical communications world for her blog,, which has continued to flourish since it was launched during her graduate studies at NJIT in 2012. She has presented webinars and seminars for Adobe, the Society for Technical Communication (STC), the IEEE ProComm, TCUK (ISTC) and at Drexel University’s eLearning Conference. She has written articles for the STC Intercom, STC Notebook, the Content Rules blog, and The Content Wrangler as well. She is very active in the STC, as a former chapter president for the STC-Philadelphia Metro Chapter, and is currently serving on three STC Board committees. You can learn more about Danielle on LinkedIn at, on Twitter @techcommgeekmom, or through her blog. All content is the owner's opinions, and does not reflect those of her employers past or present.

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