In the southwestern United States, where managers speak English and workers frequently speak only Spanish, managers gain workers’ trust and loyalty when they become fluent in Spanish. In Quebec, Canada, where leaders speak English and workers typically speak French, leaders gain their employees’ respect and teams become more productive when leaders learn French. In South Africa, we reasonably can expect the same result: When managers and leaders learn Zulu through Zulu classes communicating clearly and effectively with their workers, confidence and productivity dramatically will improve.
In bilingual countries, people begin to understand that workers’ native language is their language of familiarity and English represents the language of power for workers. When a leader gives up the language of power, adopting the language of familiarity, he shows respect and understanding for the workers’ condition. Confidence soars and workers feel more ownership in their work. Taking Zulu classes provides huge psychological and financial benefits for managers.