Proficiency In Communication Essay

1160 words - 5 pages

Proficiency in both verbal and written English is paramount to being a successful contributor to the Canadian labour market. In the new information age, where more and more communication is delivered through electronic means, there is an even more profound need for clear communication, as misinterpretation and lack of tone in emails lead to business inefficiency and conflict. These problems are optically more apparent when investigating the skilled immigrant labour pool within Canada. Our current education system and the acceptance of below standard median proficiency tests cause a further “acceptable” degradation of one’s ability to articulate and communicate in an interesting and engaging way. There are many ways to improve the plight of the deficient communicator and most of this revolves around training or retraining. The twenty first century has seen the information age and the concept of globalization shift into hyper drive. Although English is predominately the language of choice in international forums, not so much due to the sheer number of English people, but due to the growth and need for a lingua franca, or bridging language. The majority of English language growth in the world is as a second language and therefore, this makes the need for clear and concise English communication all the more vital to both employees and employers.

Canada accepted 280,636 immigrant and refugees in to this great nation in 2010 alone (Citizenship) and there seems to be no desire to decrease this annual goal in the foreseeable future. There is a lot to be gained from this high level of immigration, most notably the skilled immigrant labour pool, but often they do not see their skills properly utilized in many case, due to language barriers, either real or perceived. In a Statistics Canada study called, “Canada’s Immigrant Labour Market” (Statistics), it states that university educated immigrants’ unemployment rate is more than double the unemployment rate of the Canadian-born population. During this same study, a survey given to newly landed immigrants cites language as one of the major barriers to employment. Immigrants that are not proficient in English, in particular those of a visible minority, in many cases are assumed to have a lower level of competency, or lack job competency all together. A potential new employer risks costly mistakes and increased inefficiencies if they hire the “wrong guy” for an open position. This is infinitely more difficult and dramatically more vivid when that potential new hire is an immigrant with poor English skills. The chances of mistakes will be assumed to be higher, and the time taken to explain assigned tasks will increase as the employer confirms with the employee that directions are clearly understood. Some immigrant employees that have difficulty with English may not be able to communicate clearly, but they still fully realize the difficulty the employer faces. In fear for their job, fear of...

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