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Working language

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macaroonie
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Working language

Postby macaroonie » Thu, 20 Dec 2012 9:16 am

Can i confirm that the working language of Singapore is English? Is it reasonable to expect english to be spoken in the workplace when discussing work issues?

What do you think when during group meetings, certain individuals talk to each other in other languages, when a particular work issue is being discussed by the group?

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Postby Sergei82 » Thu, 20 Dec 2012 9:30 am

Everybody will speak to you in English. Only if they have the same native language, they will use that language to talk to each other if they think it is not your concern. It is very rare when they use their own language during some meetings neglecting you (usually managers prevent that).

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Postby Barnsley » Thu, 20 Dec 2012 9:48 am

Its usually English if I am in the meeting or work is being discussed, and as said before my boss will make sure the conversation is in English if I am there.

However now and again if I am on a conference call with Taiwan, Mandarin will be used especially if the folk in Taiwan feel like they need to rant. When their tone starts getting higher and higher you know Mandarin is on the way.

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Postby v4jr4 » Thu, 20 Dec 2012 10:21 am

By default, I'll use English, especially for group discussion with people with different mother tongues.
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Postby nakatago » Thu, 20 Dec 2012 10:24 am

Yup.

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Postby Wd40 » Fri, 21 Dec 2012 11:46 am

Depends on organisation culture. Our company allows people to speak in any languages they want and most teams here are heavy with Filipinos and Indians. In a team meeting if there are only Filipinos then it won't be surprising to see that all are talking in their native language. In case of Indians too same case you will see them speak in Hindi. In case of Indians though there is a problem of some of them from the south who don't understand Hindi and its only then you see them speaking in English.

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Postby offshoreoildude » Fri, 21 Dec 2012 12:01 pm

There are four official languages for business in Singapore. Chinese (Mandarin), Bahasa Melayu, Tamil and English. You need to be conversant in all four and some of the local dialects (Hokkien) and possibly some of your workers languages (Tagalog and Hindi) if you want to be taken seriously here.
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Postby Cath C » Fri, 21 Dec 2012 12:12 pm

offshoreoildude wrote:There are four official languages for business in Singapore. Chinese (Mandarin), Bahasa Melayu, Tamil and English. You need to be conversant in all four and some of the local dialects (Hokkien) and possibly some of your workers languages (Tagalog and Hindi) if you want to be taken seriously here.


:lol: :lol: :lol:

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Postby nakatago » Fri, 21 Dec 2012 1:36 pm

Oh boy.

Those Esperanto lessons were a waste then.

/s

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Postby ututu » Fri, 21 Dec 2012 3:03 pm

offshoreoildude wrote:There are four official languages for business in Singapore. Chinese (Mandarin), Bahasa Melayu, Tamil and English. You need to be conversant in all four and some of the local dialects (Hokkien) and possibly some of your workers languages (Tagalog and Hindi) if you want to be taken seriously here.


Well may be in the environment where majority had their education in non-english, perhaps, nothing against construction or shipbuilding site workers, but yeah I'd expect working language non-english in places like that. In quiet & placid places inhabited by office plankton aka air-con offices of CBD working language will be English as it should be. English is the Esperanto nowadays.

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Postby offshoreoildude » Fri, 21 Dec 2012 3:52 pm

ututu wrote:
offshoreoildude wrote:There are four official languages for business in Singapore. Chinese (Mandarin), Bahasa Melayu, Tamil and English. You need to be conversant in all four and some of the local dialects (Hokkien) and possibly some of your workers languages (Tagalog and Hindi) if you want to be taken seriously here.


Well may be in the environment where majority had their education in non-english, perhaps, nothing against construction or shipbuilding site workers, but yeah I'd expect working language non-english in places like that. In quiet & placid places inhabited by office plankton aka air-con offices of CBD working language will be English as it should be. English is the Esperanto nowadays.


I absolutely disagree with you and frankly your assertion is half assed. I personally expect English to die out in the next century.
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Postby x9200 » Fri, 21 Dec 2012 3:56 pm

ututu wrote:
offshoreoildude wrote:There are four official languages for business in Singapore. Chinese (Mandarin), Bahasa Melayu, Tamil and English. You need to be conversant in all four and some of the local dialects (Hokkien) and possibly some of your workers languages (Tagalog and Hindi) if you want to be taken seriously here.


Well may be in the environment where majority had their education in non-english, perhaps, nothing against construction or shipbuilding site workers, but yeah I'd expect working language non-english in places like that. In quiet & placid places inhabited by office plankton aka air-con offices of CBD working language will be English as it should be. English is the Esperanto nowadays.

The fact that English is a lingua franca globally does not have to imply it is lingua franca in every country and every profession.

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Re: Working language

Postby JR8 » Fri, 21 Dec 2012 6:37 pm

macaroonie wrote:What do you think when during group meetings, certain individuals talk to each other in other languages, when a particular work issue is being discussed by the group?


I think I'd find it it very rude, in that it is a public display of separateness from the others. I.e. it seems contrary to the idea and spirit of a group meeting.

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Re: Working language

Postby offshoreoildude » Fri, 21 Dec 2012 6:54 pm

JR8 wrote:
macaroonie wrote:What do you think when during group meetings, certain individuals talk to each other in other languages, when a particular work issue is being discussed by the group?


I think I'd find it it very rude, in that it is a public display of separateness from the others. I.e. it seems contrary to the idea and spirit of a group meeting.


Rather harsh for those who can't grasp what is said in the main language in the meeting. However if a little filipino / hindi cartel is forming.... it can be a PITA
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Re: Working language

Postby v4jr4 » Fri, 21 Dec 2012 6:59 pm

JR8 wrote:
macaroonie wrote:What do you think when during group meetings, certain individuals talk to each other in other languages, when a particular work issue is being discussed by the group?


I think I'd find it it very rude, in that it is a public display of separateness from the others. I.e. it seems contrary to the idea and spirit of a group meeting.


Well, different people, different opinion. You remind me about someone on the client said who said the same exact thing. But as for me, I'm fine with it, as long as the team can reach the expected target.
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