Language and Globalization

Language and Globalization: The Mandate to Speak English at Rakuten

It tends to equalize values and desires, without doing the same for opportunities. So far, so unsurprising, you might say; but globalization may well have a kind of revenge effect. Its future is going to be defined not in America or Britain, but by the new economies of places like Bangalore, Chongqing or Bratislava.

This endangerment of languages can have a drastic effect on the cultures that loses there identity. Effects on language loss on cultures might include: Therefore, it is important for cultures to preserve their language. Despite the increase in globalization, this is possible in many ways, such as language classes, promoting the native language in homes, schools, art, promoting though a strong national identity. The most problematic issue is how to make these two seemingly contradictory facts compatible: Actions and representations and discourses on language diversity cultural identity , integration and intercommunication are therefore primordial, promoting the search for new principles and ways of looking at situations of language contact.

Capra therefore suggests dealing with the columns of the table below complementarily, in order to rectify, particularly in Western culture, the predominance of assertive thought and values at the expense of integrative ones:. This change in paradigm does seem urgent because it is clearly coherent with the main problems of modern societies. Now that we are getting to know ourselves better genetically too and that we are sure that human are a unique species and that the genome of other species is not so different, perhaps we can enter another planetary era with more solidarity between the diverse cultural groups and the other species with which we share the biosphere.

Biologically and linguistically, as Edward O. If we have a deep look inside us we will come to the conclusion that Art can be the bridge that can make compatible Language and Globalization. You are commenting using your WordPress. You are commenting using your Twitter account.

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Notify me of new comments via email. Notify me of new posts via email. Create a free website or blog at WordPress. Capra therefore suggests dealing with the columns of the table below complementarily, in order to rectify, particularly in Western culture, the predominance of assertive thought and values at the expense of integrative ones: Leave a Reply Cancel reply Enter your comment here Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Email required Address never made public.

The Language of Globalization

Follow Join 19 other followers. Rakuten, the company itself, is comparable to an Amazon, Ebay, Expedia, all of those put together. Rakuten has an ecosystem of all of these online businesses and services. People opt in to membership into Rakuten, so you become a Rakuten subscriber and you make all of your purchases through them. You can buy eggs, wine, plane tickets, and some online banking, all through this membership. They actually have close to 90 percent market dominance in Japan when it comes to online business. In terms of Mikitani, he's a fascinating leader.

It's been a privilege getting to know him. He is dubbed as the Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos of Japan for his prescience and understanding what technology can do for commerce.

Language and Globalization: The Mandate to Speak English at Rakuten

He is fearless in his decision making. Sometimes he would be the only person having a particular vision and pursuing it, his co-founders, his executive team, looking and turning the other way. He feels and has this gut instinct about the future. The capacity to process a ton of information across many domains. He's the son of a famous economist. He's very charismatic, too. He would have to be, I would think, to lead this kind of an enterprise.

The ambition that he has for Rakuten is described in the case. He's really all about globalization at this point. This is something that he's talked about and thought about. I was able to trace it back to him in his thirties. He's been thinking about it and talking about it for years and years and years and really went all out.

This case is really about that. He may have 90 percent market share in Japan, but Japan's a relatively small market compared to China and other places where they want to take this business. His employees are engaging daily both with clients and with partners who are around the globe. Can you talk a little bit about the landscape of Rakuten?

The hierarchical pattern of these connections closely corresponds to other dimensions of the world system, such as the global economy and the worldwide constellation of states. This has been the case now for some plus years. While globalization is generally regarded as the process of international integration involving businesses or organizations, this interchange of world views, cultures, and ideas has had a dramatic impact on education and the way people learn languages. Staying relevant Education and language are important aspects of ensuring people can effectively live together in an increasingly globalized world, and we need to be sure students are being taught in a way that not only benefits them, but also recognizes cultural uniqueness. In fact, they were the ones that the Golden State Warriors selected precisely because of the fact that they're a global company and a global brand. They believe this is one of their competitive advantages. Soon after he did this, he wanted to get a little bit of insight from me and I wanted a case study.

Since this case has been written, they've expanded dramatically. They were in about six, seven countries when the case was written, and now they're really covering the globe, partly through their acquisitions, their partnerships, their joint ventures. In fact, they today are the key sponsors for FC Barcelona soccer team, so They just inked the deal that was announced recently with the Golden State Warriors, our NBA championship team, where Rakuten is now etched on their jerseys. This is how global they've become. That might be a first, I think, for an American sports franchise to have an international brand on their jersey or represented, so that's a huge deal.

In fact, they were the ones that the Golden State Warriors selected precisely because of the fact that they're a global company and a global brand.

The role of language in the era of globalization and technology

They opted away from other possible sponsors because they weren't global enough. The NBA has this global vision, so now they're seeking to partner with a global company like Rakuten in order to actualize that global vision. Rakuten couldn't have done that five, six years ago. That's an amazing co-branding play there My English is good.

That's not the case, obviously, for other employees. How was this English-only mandate introduced? What happened was on March 1, , Hiroshi Mikitani stepped up on a podium and addressed 7, of his Japanese employees, with some 3, overseas employees listening in, and said, "From this day forward, we are going to migrate to the English language from Japanese.

There is no turning back. They needed to take up one of their key principles, speed, speed, speed.

Englishnization started that very day. The Japanese employees for a period of two years worked harder than they'd ever worked in their lives. They were filled with anxiety and they struggled, and struggled, and struggled, but that changed. Within two years, they were speaking with their counterparts in English around the world, they were spreading their Japanese corporate cultural practices easily, and English became the conduit by which they expressed and spread their corporate culture.

They believe this is one of their competitive advantages. The American employee was very excited in the beginning.

However, with globalization allowing languages and their cultures to spread and dominate on a global scale, it also leads to the extinction of. It's important to recognize how globalization has affected language around the world to develop a better understanding of how schools and.

Within two years, the Americans suddenly experienced culture shock because the Japanese could now impose their corporate cultural practices rooted in their national identity on the Americans in new ways. In the case, and also in the book, you describe the different profiles of people when this kind of mandate is issued. Can you describe that a little bit?

Carnegie Council

First you have the Japanese employees who work and lived in Japan but yet had to take up a new language. I call them linguistic expats because they become expats while living in their own countries when it came to language use. The Americans I call the cultural expats based on what I just described, the fact that they would walk into their offices in New York and in California and be immersed in Japanese culture in new and unexpected ways.

There's a third group.

This group comes from places like France, Brazil, Germany and Taiwan. They're neither Japanese nationals nor English native speakers. I honestly thought this would be the double jeopardy group when I first learned about this. It turns out once they climbed the steep English language and Japanese cultural curve, they adapted quickly. I call them the dual expats because they're neither Japanese or English native speakers. They have proven to me to be the group that is the most adaptive and has been able to live out the decoupling of language and culture, and the mixing and matching of language and culture, in very productive ways.

As a manager, if you're advising a manager on what kind of employees to hire, that sounds like a pretty good criteria. It's a fantastic group.

Language and Globalization

That they're able to detach from their language or their culture and able to operate like true expats in their own countries, that's what I've been talking about since writing this book, this notion of how can we operate like expats in our own countries and have, what I call, global work orientation in order to better serve our organizations and our customers no matter where they live, no matter what they speak, no matter who they are.

If we look at the profile of students who come to a place like Harvard Business School, many of them have been able to travel. They've been able to experience other cultures. They've become more comfortable in their shoes no matter where they are in the world. As other businesses are thinking about globalizing, does this indicate that there's a model here that managers can think about following?

I think there's an absolute model that managers can follow. Part of it is, you don't have to have been a dual expat in order to gain some of the insights that we saw through the Rakuten case.

The Influence of Globalization on Learning Languages

It's the norms that they possess that we can package and teach others. That's all actually outlined and highlighted in the book. Do you get a different reaction from let's say the more senior people who have been in their career for some time versus those just beginning their careers? It's interesting because the MBAs really look at this case as employees, as the recipients of this language strategy and language mandate.