localization Archives - Local Concept

Case Study: Local Concept and Jelly Belly Candy Company

By | Localization | 沒有評論

Local Concept partnered with Jelly Belly Candy Company® in order to localize flavor translations that can fit into any culture and palate. To say that this candy company pushes the creativity envelope is an understatement. It seems as though they have set out to re-create flavors after real-life experiences, tastes and smells. They have a lab that puts smells in a vacuum in order to recreate them.

Here are some examples: Stinky Socks, Dirty Dishwater, and Skunk Spray. Coming up with the correct localization for these nasty tastes is not easy.

Michael Cárdenas inside Jelly Belly Factory

President of Local Concept, Michael R. Cárdenas, inside of the Jelly Belly Candy Factory in Fairfield, California.

 

Let’s take the BeanBoozled flavor “Dirty Dishwater”. We all know what it is. Let’s say we want to translate this into Spanish. This is easy, “agua de lavar los platos sucia”. However, we need to limit the translation to two words. Here is the difference between translation and copywriting or adaptation. We first tried to keep the word water in the name, but could not do so correctly without using too many words. Moreover, we wanted to convey the idea of a dirty dish washing environment. Consequently, we focused on both the concept of dishwashing and dirty. We were therefore able to limit the name to “lavavajillas sucio”.

Jelly Belly BeanBoozled Candy

Jelly Belly BeanBoozled Candy

In English, the word “hot” can refer to temperature and spiciness, or Jalapeño hot. However, the word hot can’t be used interchangeably in other languages like Norwegian. If we translate the word ‘hot’ directly it means hot as in a temperature hot (“varmt”). Norwegians either keep the English word hot, or use the word ‘sterk’ which means ‘strong’ in English when referring to spicy hot.

In some cases we have to create localized copy that is catchy but does not follow the English. The English candy name “Skunk Spray” was most likely created by someone living in America. If you live in the U.S. some of you have probably smelled skunk spray. If this Skunk spray flavor is going to be sold in a different continent where no one can relate to the smell, we have to come up with a term that is understood by someone who hasn’t encountered it. How about “skunk fart”?

Solution

Local Concept has put together an online glossary tool for both clients and Local Concept which can be updated as we go. Style guides and the use of copywriting have helped Jelly Belly gain a global presence no matter how crazy the candy is.

Are you ready to talk about your next localization project? Contact us today for a free consultation.

eLearning Localization: Why, What, and How

By | 線上教學 | 沒有評論

Local Concept exhibited at the 2019 DevLearn Conference & Expo where learning and development professionals share the future of work and learning. The global work force is expected to reach 3.5 billion people by 2030, leading millions of people from across the globe to work together. Consequently, multinational companies need localized content to suit the languages and cultures of their internal audience, especially when it comes to training key resources.

We will walk you through why you should localize your eLearning courses, what is usually localized, and how to prepare your content for localization.

eLearning localization: Why, What, and How

eLearning Localization: the process of translating learning content and platforms into a different language and adapting it for a specific region. 

Why localize eLearning courses?

Studies show that translating training content boosts knowledge acquisition and increase retention rate. Localizing online training content goes a step further, helping to bring your company’s values even closer to your global workforce by aligning ethnic, geographic and cultural sensibilities.

  1. Mitigate risks

    It’s easy to assume that English works for all. Just because someone speaks or writes in one language, it does not mean that they have the ability to fully comprehend the information. OSHA estimates that language barriers are a contributing factor in 25% of job related accidents. The cost of a compliance breach for an average company is over $9 million. This is nearly triple what the average compliance training program cost.

  2. Improve Performance and Productivity

    When the culture of learners is taken into consideration, it’s likely that they’ll find the content more engaging and relatable, which helps improve employee satisfaction. For instance, let’s say you are delivering a sales training course on body language for your sales team located across different continents. While your U.S. sales reps picture a salesperson shaking hands with the customer after a meeting, the same image would probably not be as effective for your sales reps in Japan where greetings take form of bowing. Leadership and sales courses are topics that are open to interpretation. In order to help trainees make the most of your course, accurate cultural reference localization is essential.

  3. Grow your global footprint

    When employees are engaged, you can more effectively hire, train and retain teams that help drive expansion.

What is usually localized?

eLearning takes many different forms, from interactive quizzes and assessments, to articles and videos. The most common elements that need localization include:

  • Written content
  • Audio
  • Video
  • Images and Graphics
  • User experience elements (navigation buttons and coding)
  • Formatting (date, time, currency, units of measurement)

With that in mind, we will show you how to save time and money by planning for multilingual content from the beginning.

How to plan for multilingual content

Here are 6 helpful tips to consider when preparing your content for localization:

  1. Avoid slang, idiomatic expressions and acronyms

    It will make the process more straightforward, which in turn will help your language partner deliver the project faster. Try to use simple language and shorter sentences, especially for straight-forward content such as technical training, and health and safety assessments.

  1. Keep text expansion and contraction in mind

    When translating from English to German, the text expands by 10% to 30% on average. In contrast, when translating into Mandarin, text may contract by 20% to 50%. This becomes a challenge when it needs to be featured in pre-designed slides, turned into voiceover, or inserted into video. Dealing with text that contract is generally not as much of a problem as text that expands. With languages that expand, it may look crowded. Thus, keep in mind how the translation would fit in and look when presented in its final form. In terms of video, provide your partner with extra footage so the scenes can accommodate for longer voiceover. In terms of visual elements, allow enough white space around speech bubbles, call outs and other text elements.

  1. Consider graphics and images

    Localization includes carefully choosing culturally appropriate colors and images. For instance, the color white tends to symbolize purity and peace in Western cultures (North America and Europe) while it represents death and unhappiness in Eastern and Asian countries. If your eLearning course contains interactive assessments with navigation buttons (i.e. next, close, submit), tooltip speech bubbles, and any pre-programmed visual elements, make sure to include XML files so these snippets can be extracted, translated, and imported back into the eLearning software.

  2. Provide editable files

    Provide all eLearning content to your language partner in editable formats to ensure translations can be incorporated easily, and to save you the cost of having to re-create the files from scratch.

  3. Choose the right language partner

    The best-suited translation company is one that can take care of the entire project from start to finish. At Local Concept, we make use of the latest technological advancements to get you more for your money in a timely manner, such as Translation Memory (TM). This is beneficial when dealing with on-going projects over a long period of time as it ensures consistent translation and shortens turnaround time. We can work with any platform or format you prefer. We integrate directly with your LMS and perform final testing to ensure that delivery is superb. Lastly, Local Concept ensures that your company-specific terminology and approved translations are used through our client-specific glossary.

Conclusion

Naturally, when people are taught in their native language, they learn, understand and retain information better. By understanding your target audience, the effectiveness of your course increases. The ROI of eLearning localization is not just about the numbers, but the non-quantifiable results and impacts. It has proven to reduce lost time, improve employee retention, accelerate productivity, and mitigate injury claims.

Do you need help getting started with your eLearning localization? Contact us today for a free consultation!

Six Traditional Chinese Words that don’t have an English Translation

作者: | Culture, Translation | 沒有評論

Unlike alphabetical languages such as Spanish and French, the Chinese language is a writing system that is composed of over 50,000 characters. This logographic writing system gives access to visual representations of objects and concepts. This makes the language both difficult to translate, and less precise than its counterparts. Here we present six examples of Chinese words that are hard to translate.

撒嬌 (sā jiāo)

Little girl holding flower

Leo Rivas via Unsplash

Whiny, to seek attention in a childish but lovely way.
This is an act particularly practiced by a grown-up female to her partner. It is considered as a way to show the side of her feminine character.

面子 (miàn zi)

Woman holding rose

Giulia Bertelli via Unsplash

Surface (literally), referring to dignity or self-esteem.
For example, I was just pretending to understand the conversation in French in order to save face (保全面子, bǎo quán miàn zi).

風水 (fēng shuǐ)

Furniture

ROOM via Unsplash

Feng shui, known as Chinese geomancy.
The term literally translates as “wind-water”. By orienting buildings and furniture, it’s practiced bolster the harmony between individuals and their surrounding environment.

緣分 (yuán fèn)

Many hands together

Tim Marshall via Unsplash

Fateful coincidence, an interactive concept that describes good and bad chances and potential relationships.

Sometimes, it’s simply translated as “destiny”, “fate” or “luck” with a focus on the relationship two people or objects share.

幸福 (xìng fú)

Yellow book named happy

Josh Felise via Unsplash

A state of being satisfied and content with life especially when with families and significant others.

It can be simply translated as “happiness” depending on the context.

孝順 (xiào shùn)

Two elderly people sitting in their chairs

Elien Dumon via Unsplash

Filial piety, a virtue of respect for one’s parents that is commonly praised in the Chinese community.

It includes but is not limited to being a loving, dutiful and caring child, as well as being responsible for the well-being of one’s parents.

Written by: Yijen Lu, Project Coordinator at Local Concept. 

How Different Cultures Perceive Emojis

By | Culture, Translation | 沒有評論
Woman holding emoji balloon

Lidya Nada via Unsplash

Emojis are undeniably fun, and sometimes they ‘speak louder than words’. They enable us to add emotional context to plain text, such as humor, brevity or irony. They illustrate non-verbal cues that could be expressed in face-to-face communication including gestures and facial expressions. However, when creating content for a multicultural audience, it’s important to consider how different cultures perceive symbols, colors, and body language.

The most popular emojis around the world

Although being an “official” emoji translator just became a thing in 2017, a study done by Swiftkey in 2015 uncovered insights to how different languages around the globe are using emoji by analyzing over one billion pieces.  Here are some interesting findings:

  • Americans score highest for a variety of emojis, including skulls, birthday cake, fire, tech, LGBT, meat, and female-oriented icons.
  • Canada uses the smiling poop emoji more than any other country. It also leads in violent, body parts, money, sports, raunchy, and ocean creatures.
  • French leads in the heart emoji, and uses hearts 4x more than any other languages. The red heart is also the #1 emoji for several Scandinavian and Eastern European countries.
  • Arabic-speakers are fond of roses and flowers.
  • Swedish-speakers use the bread emoji more than any other language.
  • Scandinavian (Danish, Swedish, Norwegian) use the Santa emoji more than all other languages. (But… doesn’t Santa live in Finland?).
  • Australia uses double the amount of alcohol-themed emoji than others, 65% more drug emoji than average, and leads for both junk food and holiday.
    • Portuguese speakers actually topped Australia in the use of drug emojis (pill, syringe, mushroom, cigarette) when Swiftkey published its second report.
  • Brits use the winky emoji twice the average rate.

Emojis are understood differently by different cultures

The meaning of an emoji varies greatly depending on culture, language, and generation. Using emojis in cross-cultural communications runs the risk of being misunderstood. Here are some examples of cultural variations:

Sign of the Horns GestureIn countries like Brazil, Italy, Greece, Portugal, Colombia and Argentina, the “metal horns” can indicate that the person was cheated on by their partner.

 

Waving HandWhile the “waving hand” is used to say hello or goodbye in one language, it can signify the ending of a friendship in another.

 

Thumbs UpThumbs-up” may be a sign of approval in Western cultures; but it is considered an obscene gesture in Greece and the Middle East.

 

OK HandIn Brazil and Turkey, the “OK” hand gesture is considered as an insult, and is equivalent to giving the middle finger in America.

 

Clapping HandsClapping hands” shows praise and offer congratulations in Western countries, while in China it’s a symbol of making love.

 

Slightly Smiling FaceThe “slightly smiling” emoji is not used as a sign of happiness in all countries. In China, it implies distrust, disbelief, or someone humoring you. It can also convey an ironic tone of voice in other contexts.

Baby AngelThe angel emoji can imply having performed a good deed or signify innocence in the west, while it may be used as a sign of death and be perceived as threatening in China.

 

Eggplant Dreaming of an eggplant on the first night of the New Year means good fortune in Japan. Some people take the eggplant for what it is: a vegetable. In other countries like the U.S, Trinidad and Ireland it has a strong sexual connotation, especially by users ages 18 to 24.

 

PeachSimilarly to the eggplant, some cultures take the peach for what it is: a fruit. Other countries translate this emoji to “butt”.

 

Tips for localizing cross-cultural content with Emojis

Given that emojis are open to interpretation, using them for a multinational audience can be tricky. However, emojis have been proven to boost engagement levels, click-through-rates, and open rates in marketing initiatives. In 2015, Oxford Dictionaries made the Face With Tears of Joy emoji the word of the year. There are many benefits of using emojis in marketing, and they are inevitably here to stay.

So, what should we consider when localizing cross-cultural content?

  1. Avoid using hand gesture emojis.
  2. Avoid using only emojis to convey any idea.
  3. Make the emoji relevant to the text in order to enhance the meaning.
  4. Consider how it looks on different platforms.
  5. Sometimes it might be best to spell it out *Neutral face*.

Conclusion

Just being proficient linguistically is not enough to translate emojis. Context and cultural differences need to be considered, thus full localization of the content is essential.

Are you curious about using emoji in your cross-cultural content? Contact us for a free consultation.

How Emotions and Silence can get you in or out of Jail

By | Translation | 沒有評論

Emotions and silence can get you in or out of jail or in trouble, depending on your Interpreter.

In court criminal proceedings, you have probably seen a witness speak for 30 seconds while the interpreter takes 10 seconds to translate what has been uttered by the witness.

The interpreter role is not only to interpret the words, but to create the same tone and emotion of the witness.

well let me translate that if i can hillary clinton GIF by Election 2016

Imagine in a criminal rape case if the witness is asked “have you ever raped anyone?”.

Scenario A: The witness quickly answers NO.

disagree no way GIF by VH1

Scenario B: The witness is silent for three seconds… thinks about it… utters a murmur and then answers NO.

not for me no GIF by Originals

These two answers say a lot about the state of mind of the witness and they should be “mimicked” as part of the interpretation. It is the role of the interpreter to step in the shoes of the witness and sound like him.

In scenario B, all utterances, and even “hums” need to be interpreted. Sometimes, the emotions of the witness will play an important role in the interpreters’ choice of words.

In 2007, Spain’s Prime Minister Zapatero was trying to speak. Hugo Chavez, ex-President of Venezuela, kept on interrupting him. The king of Spain, Juan Carlos, then asked Hugo “¿Porque no se calla?”. By his tone, you could see he was just asking him to be quiet. The interpreter for the US media interpreted it as “Shut up”. This is obviously a different message, one that did not allow for context and interpretation of the emotions.

Often times, emotions take on more meaning than words, especially when it comes to communication in high context cultures.

court GIF

Happy Lexi Day

By | Technology | 沒有評論

April 25 is recognized as World Penguin Day to celebrate this amazing creature’s annual, northward migration. These black and white feathered animals are superbly adapted to aquatic life. Penguins are counter-shaded for camouflage. Their white belly, when looked at from below, looks like reflective water surface instead of a penguin. 

Many have asked, who is this cute guy behind the image of Local Concept?

In the event of World Penguin Day, we have the pleasure of introducing him. His name is Lexi. He is over 30 years old. He was born in San Diego, California, and has also lived in over 50 countries.

Some penguins love the cold, some love tempered weather. Lexi is adaptable to any weather, country, or language. He is the perfect representation of Local Concept: he fits in anywhere, and will go above and beyond to help our clients create a truly global product.

We love our penguin Lexi so much that we have developed our very own technology offering named after him!

LexiPM

When you work with Local Concept you can view all of your translation projects online, review schedules, budget, and pending issues. LexiPM can be accessed 24/7 by any of your team members as well as your Ad Agency.

LexiTerm

With our online Glossary Management system, all you need is a browser and you can connect to your very own glossary and branding strategy.

Each client gets a customized account with login credentials. It is very easy to setup and to use – no software installation required.

It offers you one central location for all of your glossaries. 

and gives authorized users access to the same document, so no need to find out which version is the latest one.

For an in-penguin interview with Lexi, or to find out more about LexiPM or LexiTerm, reach out to our Client Strategies team today.

Email: info@localconcept.com

電話: +1 (619) 295-2682

Is Neural Machine Translation (NMT) Here to Stay?

By | 機器翻譯 | 沒有評論

Neural Machine Translation (NMT) is like politics: everyone talks about it, but few know what’s truly going on.

President of Local Concept, Michael R. Cárdenas, and President of Systran, Dennis Gachot, presented at this year’s LocWorld in Kuala Lumpur on the status of NMT. The discussion outlined an objective view on this technology.

What is Neural Machine Translation?

In short, it replaces traditional, statistical MT with a Neural Network model. NMT is known to create more accurate output than Statistical MT, however, it is not for everyone. You have to dive in and get your feet wet before concluding if it will work for you or not.

What is the difference between Neural Machine Translation and Statistical Machine Translation?

While MT uses algorithms purely based on statistical models, NMT learns linguistic patterns and applies them to translate text. In other words, the neural network can be trained to recognize data patterns and improve translation output over time, whereas Statistical MT uses the most probable output.

How do I know if MT is for me?

The standard statistical quality analysis methods, such as BlueScore, are a starting point for quality analysis, but you need to follow up with data analysis from a human-based quality metric.

While it works considerably well for technical text, creative material still sees very weak results. The quality is also different per language pair. To effectively rely on NMT for technical material, there needs to be a substantial investment of time and money to train the engine for your language pair(s).

Is NMT here to stay?

Yes, it definitely is. More and more research is being done each day and the advancements in the area are noticeable. If you want to remain ahead of the game, you need to get your feet wet now.

Any questions about NMT or MT? Leave a comment or contact us today!

Entrega del Premio Cervantes en Alcalá de Henares

作者: | 部落格 | One Comment

Como cada 23 de abril, Alcalá de Henares y su Universidad Cisneriana se visten de gala para la entrega de uno de los premios culturales más importantes de España: el Premio de Literatura en Lengua Castellana Miguel de Cervantes.

¿Qué es el Premio Cervantes?

Tal y como explica la página del sitio web del Ministerio de Educación, Cultura y Deporte (MECD) dedicada a este galardón, el Premio Cervantes «es el máximo reconocimiento a la labor creadora de escritores españoles e hispanoamericanos cuya obra haya contribuido a enriquecer de forma notable el patrimonio literario en lengua española».

Toma su nombre del célebre autor complutense Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, escritor de la bien conocida obra El ingenioso hidalgo Don Quijote de la Mancha, que se considera una de las obras más importantes no solo de la literatura en castellano sino de la literatura universal.

El Premio Cervantes se convoca desde 1975 y entre sus galardonados podemos encontrar grandes nombres de la literatura en español como Dámaso Alonso (1978), Jorge Luis Borges (1979), Rafael Alberti (1983), Gonzalo Torrente Ballester (1985), María Zambrano (1988), Mario Vargas Llosas (1994) o Camilo José Cela (1995), entre muchos otros.

En su historia, hasta el momento, solamente cuatro mujeres han recibido el galardón (la última en hacerlo fue Elena Poniatowska en 2013).

La dotación económica del premio son 125.000 euros.

¿Quién puede ser candidato y quién conforma el jurado?

Según el MECD, a este premio puede optar «cualquier escritor cuya obra literaria esté escrita, totalmente o en su parte esencial» en español. También señala que tanto las Academias de la Lengua Española como los autores premiados en anteriores convocatorias o las instituciones que estén vinculadas a la literatura en lengua castellana y los miembros del jurado del premio pueden presentar candidatos a recibir el galardón.

El jurado, desde 2008, lo conforman:

  • Los dos últimos galardonados con el Premio de Literatura en Lengua Castellana Miguel de Cervantes.
  • Un miembro de la Real Academia Española.
  • Un miembro de una de las Academias Iberoamericanas de la lengua española.
  • Cuatro personalidades del mundo académico, universitario y literario, de reconocido prestigio, propuestos, respectivamente, por la Conferencia de Rectores de las Universidades Españolas, la Unión de Universidades de América Latina, el Director del Instituto Cervantes y el Ministro de Cultura.
  • Dos miembros elegidos entre representantes de suplementos culturales de diarios, propuestos, respectivamente, por la Federación de Asociaciones de Periodistas de España y una asociación de periodistas mayoritaria en Latinoamérica.
  • Uno a propuesta de la Asociación Internacional de Hispanistas, de nacionalidad no española ni iberoamericana.

La cuna de Cervantes, lugar de entrega para su premio

Tal y como señala el MECD, el Premio Cervantes se falla a finales de año y se entrega el 23 de abril, Día Internacional del Libro.

Dos datos curiosos sobre esta fecha: a pesar de que se dice que es el día del fallecimiento de Miguel de Cervantes, en realidad se trata de la fecha de su entierro porque el autor falleció el 22 de abril, tal y como se indica en el sitio web del 400 aniversario de la muerte del autor, que se celebró en 2016. Como segunda anécdota sobre esta fecha, cabe destacar que se ha dicho en numerosas ocasiones que Miguel de Cervantes comparte la fecha de su muerte con otro gran escritor de la literatura universal, William Shakespeare. Sin embargo, este artículo de la revista Muy Historia explica que las defunciones no sucedieron el mismo día porque existía por aquel entonces un desfase entre el calendario que se usaba en España y el que se usaba en Inglaterra.

El lugar elegido para la entrega del Premio de Cervantes no podía ser otro que la ciudad que lo vio nacer: Alcalá de Henares (Madrid).

Cada 23 de abril, en el Paraninfo de la Universidad de Alcalá de Henares, SS. MM. los Reyes de España entregan el galardón.

El Paraninfo de la Universidad de Alcalá de Henares (originalmente Universidad Complutense en referencia al nombre romano de la ciudad, Complutum) es la sala más emblemática del Colegio Mayor de San Ildefonso. Fue edificado por Pedro de la Cotera y su construcción se inició en 1516. El Paraninfo tiene una larga historia como lugar de acogida para la celebración de actos ilustres, tal y como señala el sitio web de la actual Universidad de Alcalá en su página dedicada a esta sala. El Paraninfo puede visitarte en visitas guiadas (y explicadas) a la Universidad de Alcalá, a través de las que se puede conocer un poco más de su historia.

Otro dato curioso para terminar: en una de las paredes dentro del recinto de la Universidad Cisneriana, antes de llegar al Paraninfo, los visitantes podrán observar retratos de cada uno de los ganadores del Premio Cervantes hasta la fecha (con el año en el que lo ganaron). Sin embargo, no están colocados en orden cronológico. En la visita explican por qué… tendréis que hacerla para descubrirlo.

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竟然沒聽過 DTP?翻譯專案幕後大功臣

作者: | 部落格 | 2 Comments

想必大家都有過這些經驗,像是購買的出版品發現中英文黏在一起;或版面配置大有問題,可能是少了一兩行,亦或圖文不符,怎麼會這樣呢?是翻譯出錯了嗎?還是?

其實翻譯只是整個出版品中小小的一個環節,要能完美的呈現翻譯專案,幕後的大功臣其實是默默無聞的DTP。

DTP是什麼?DTP 的全名叫Desktop Publishing,是透過如Adobe Indesign、Framemaker等軟體,或Office相關文書程式,針對圖片和文章加以編排。經驗老道的DTP人員可獨立作業處理多國語言及數種不同格式的檔案,不僅能找出字裡行間的小錯誤,辨識內文中不應該出現的字句或亂碼,更能及時發現內容出現的常見錯誤包含漏譯、錯字、缺圖缺段落。所以DTP不僅對翻譯本身需要有深入了解,還須具備出版相關知識,才能完美呈現翻譯專案,畫龍點睛。也鑒於翻譯專案的多元性和複雜性,DTP在現今的外語本土化產業中已經是不可或缺一道關卡了。

DTP

你一定也會想,什麼樣的人能做 DTP。如果你無法忍受任何微小的錯誤,看到的可能會是翻譯錯誤,或是圖形不正常的翻轉變形,或是字型忽大忽小,或是在一段文字裡出現不同語言別的文字,又或是因為版面編排的問題讓一些小地方被壓到看不見,不管發生哪一種,當下會克制不住衝動想幫他修正,DTP 的工作非你莫屬。

讓筆者就個人經驗來幫大家做個小測驗;

曾經在一個國外的活動會場看到一個短期刺青 (7 days Tattoo) 看板,就放在店門口,現場人來人往的,當下很壞心的告訴了朋友,卻沒有給店家建議,於是,看到好多來自世界各地的人在手臂上刺了讓人啼笑皆非的文字,這也算是一種文化衝擊吧。下列圖中您能發現幾項錯誤呢?

DTP

很高興這玩意兒只要七天就消失了!

要不然……

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firma-oficina-taipei

Hablar en público

作者: | 部落格 | 沒有評論

Siempre me ha resultado curioso el hecho de que una cultura tan abierta como la española haya tenido tantas dificultades al hablar un idioma en público. ¿Nunca te has parado a pensar por qué alguien que solo conoce 3 palabras de francés se desenvuelve como pez en el agua, mientras que tú tardas 3 minutos para poder pronunciar una única frase? ¿Por qué culturas tan similares a la nuestra como la italiana parecen más sueltas con el inglés? ¿Por qué en España alguien que fracasa queda marcado para el resto de su vida? ¿Es lógica esta visión del fracaso? Lo que en nuestro país parece lógico, en otros sitios no lo es. A priori, podemos pensar que son factores meramente personales los que influyen en este tipo de actitudes, pero también es cierto que se esconden otros tantos factores culturales. Veamos algunos de ellos.

  1. Miedo al fracaso

Por fracaso hacemos referencia a la segunda acepción de la definición dada por la Real Academia de la Lengua: 2. Suceso lastimoso, inopinado y funesto.

Como norma general, en España tenemos miedo a fracasar, en su más amplio sentido. Por ello, el simple hecho de imaginarnos que alguien nos pueda hablar en un idioma distinto al materno y que no lo entendamos supondría un suceso más que funesto, en alusión al calificativo de la RAE. En palabras algo más recientes y de estos últimos años: todo un drama del siglo XXI.

públicoEn un ámbito empresarial, el miedo al fracaso paraliza a la sociedad española en infinidad de ocasiones, ya que se asocia a la pérdida de oportunidades y se ve desde un punto de vista trágico. Incluso me atrevería a decir que esta acepción del término fracaso se puede hacer extensible a muchos países europeos. Sin embargo, en otras culturas, como la estadounidense, el fracaso se asocia a la apertura de nuevas oportunidades y se considera un motivo para generar cambios e innovar.

De este modo, el mismo fracaso en Nueva York o en Madrid nos supondría un impulso o un freno, según el modelo cultural en el que hayamos crecido. Es obvio que este freno –en el caso de España– afecta tanto a la faceta profesional como a la personal; y, por desgracia, la situación en el futuro no presagia nada positivo, ya que, según diversos estudios, ocho de cada diez mileniales tiene miedo al fracaso profesional.

  1. Educación

Es este un factor meramente nacional, y no europeo. Más allá de las modificaciones en legislación educativa que España viene sufriendo desde hace más de una década, la educación en nuestro país está basada en un modelo escrito, y no oral; un modelo más pasivo que activo.

[Aún recuerdo el shock de la primera clase de Filosofía en el instituto cuando tuvimos que debatir por grupos. Con el tiempo descubrí que no fue un drama personal, sino más bien generacional.]

Con un modelo educativo que se basa en pruebas y exámenes escritos, las destrezas orales no se desarrollan al ritmo que deberían, teniendo que recuperar el «tiempo perdido» a marchas forzadas en entidades de educación superior como la universidad. Por seguir con el parangón con Italia que ya usé anteriormente, en el país transalpino gran parte de los exámenes se realiza de forma oral. Sin duda alguna, esto les aporta a sus estudiantes unas destrezas a la hora de desenvolverse no solo en su idioma materno, sino también en otros.

  1. Factores personalespúblico

Inseguridad, falta de confianza o vergüenza son otros de las factores que nos aplastan mentalmente a la hora de hablar un idioma. Con el paso del tiempo, y en función de las necesidades de cada individuo, estas se irán paliando con más o menos rapidez. Aún recuerdo las palabras de un profesor de secundaria que me dijo: «Sabemos hablar inglés, aunque aún no lo sepamos. O en otras palabras, aún no hemos tenido la necesidad de hablarlo.»

A pesar de que nuestras destrezas orales no sean del todo excelentes, a nivel europeo somos reconocidos por nuestro amplio y detallado conocimiento de los aspectos gramaticales, por ejemplo. Así que, si formas parte de ese grupo que tiene miedo al fracaso, no esperes más y empieza a chapurrear todo lo que sabes. Al fin y al cabo, algún día tendremos que acabar con este miedo, ¿verdad?

*Fuente imagen:

-https://psicologiaymente.net/clinica/superar-miedo-hablar-en-publico

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