English language may seem like the standard of communication around the world. This is not so true according to applied linguist, David Graddol who is also the author of English Next (2006). It has been pointed out that the competitive edge that English language was supposedly providing has started to fade. English is no longer a go-to language, and it has taken the slot for universal basic skill and the advantage could only be maintained moving out of the shell and increasing our knowledge base of other languages that are gaining importance.
In an exclusive interview to Education times Graddol said English might be the Future corporate language, but there is going to be an increase in the demand of the people who are multi-linguists. He further points out that employers have started to look for people who are proficient in their regional language apart from the working knowledge of English. This is to help the individual understand the domestic segment of the market and get deep insights and dynamics for the bigger picture.
According to Britannica, the most spoken language after English is Mandarin. Mandarin Belongs to the sino-tibetan Chinese family. Even though more than one billion people speak Mandarin, it is one of the toughest language to learn. Each word in this language is supposed to be pronounced in four different ways. The next in the line is Hindi, the National language of India. India is believed to surpass china in terms of population in few years. So there are tendencies that suggest Hindi could also become the most widely spoken language across the globe. Does this mean that there is a relation between the most widely spoken language in the world and the most populous country? Well of course there is a need for further research on this but this is what the initial logic suggests.
Spanish which has a native speakers of 450 million people is spoken in about every south American and every central American country. People in the US have developed some specific interest as some of the words of the English language are borrowed from Spanish. Russian find the number 5 spot with 320 million native speakers. This is followed by Arabic, which is one of the world's oldest languages. Arabic has a native speaker base of around 250 million people from Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon , Egypt and Kuwait. Bengali, Indonesian, Portuguese and Japanese follows the order respectively.
We asked our Facebook community about the number of languages they can speak, the response was over-whelming, a tiny indicator that being multi-lingual is becoming a standard. Join the Facebook conversaiton