Most people who learn a second language do not regret their decision, and it is not hard to understand why. With so many social, cultural, and financial benefits that come with being bilingual, one can only wonder why not all people cash in on the chance to expand their language repertoire.
One of the advantages of knowing two or more languages is the vast array of career options it provides. If you are a language learner yourself, you might also look for ways to turn your foreign language skills into a source of income. In such a case, you can choose from jobs such as translator, interpreter, foreign language teacher, and customer service manager. Here is more information about several career options you can explore as a bilingual person:
If you know two or more languages, then you are in a good position to become a translator. Most translators work in-house for big companies and organizations, translating documents, manuals, and other materials from one language to another. You can also work freelance as a translator and specialize in a specific field of expertise.
In order to become a translator, you need to get an advanced degree in translation studies. You can apply the knowledge you gain at school to your next job as a translator. Bear in mind that it is worth choosing a particular field to get a specialized translator job in order to earn more. However, the best part is that you can easily find work online through sites such as ProZ and Freelancer.
Interpreting is a lot like translating, but you have to interpret conversations between people who speak different languages. If you are bilingual, then it will be easier for you to become an interpreter. In fact, there are many interpreter jobs available as the number of multilingual people is growing all over the world. Interpreters can work for companies, courts, or schools, and also as freelancers.
However, interpreting is not an easy job because you will have to translate words and phrases immediately. You will also have to provide the right tone and feel to the conversation. That is why interpreter training is available at some universities and colleges where you learn and practice the specifics of simultaneous interpreting. If you are interested in developing your skills for this position, make sure to check these tips for simultaneous interpreting.
Teaching is one of the most common careers for bilingual people because it combines both language and teaching skills. While not all teachers are bilingual, most of them speak another language. That is why it is not difficult for bilingual people to get teaching jobs since most schools value teachers who can speak other languages.
While most schools prefer native speakers to teach non-native students, some schools hire immigrants as teachers. As far as teaching goes, there are many language classes and teachers needed in different settings. For example, there are private language schools that hire language instructors or teachers for English as a second language (ESL).
Customer Service Manager
Customer service managers are in charge of the customer services of large organizations or businesses. They handle customer complaints and requests, which can require good communication skills, including speaking other languages. If you are bilingual, you can apply for this kind of job as a customer service manager.
You might not earn as much money as other careers on this list, but it does pay well. You can also use your bilingual skills to work independently as a freelancer or start your own business if you have enough money to invest in your business idea.
If you are passionate about writing, you can become a writer, start your own blog, or work as a content writer for other websites and blogs. If you are bilingual and have enough talent in writing, it will be easier for you to find work as a writer. And if you do not mind dealing with the language barrier, writing is a good career option for you as a bilingual person.
Interpreter and Translator Trainer
This is one of the most exciting jobs for bilingual people because it pays well and allows you to interact with other people interested in learning languages. As an interpreter and translator trainer, you teach people how to interpret for a living or translate from a language to another.
However, this job requires more experience and narrow skills as you have to handle many students at once. It can also be challenging to find a company willing to hire you if you do not have enough experience. That is why translator and interpreter trainers usually get their experience working as translators or interpreters before they start training others.
As you can see, there are many career options you can explore if you know more than one language. As a bilingual person, you have to think outside the box and find ways to put your language skills to good use. If you know two or more languages, it is still necessary to hone your skills and broaden your knowledge in the fields you’d like to work in on a daily basis.
There is no better time to start working on your language learning journey than right now. With so many benefits that come with knowing a second language, it is only a matter of time before you can cash in on your foreign language skills.