In a very nice editorial submitted to JoongAng Daily, former English teacher and Kyung Hee University student Akli Hadid states the obvious fact that Korea, Inc. underutilizes English speaking skills within its borders by over relying on locals with “questionable” English language capabilities and psychologically beating forcing many native English speakers to merely be glorified translators and proof readers.  The potential costs?  The lack of important perspective and creativity, and thus a big, giant gaping hole of an abyss lack of global Internet, media and business service companies in Korea, Inc.’s portfolio of world class businesses.

Google, Facebook or Avast could have been Korean companies. After all, Korea has all it takes to create giant multi-billion dollar Internet companies. It has high speed Internet connection, excellent connectivity rates and an educated and talented workforce.

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Why don’t Korean Internet companies try to set a global vision? After all, such Internet companies refuse to hire foreign staff, are not attentive to foreigner’s suggestions for improvement and eye an exclusively Korean market.

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Some expat scientists and engineers hired by Korean companies end up proofreading documents and typing e-mails instead of doing research and participating in the innovation process. Koreans should cultivate western minds by taking advantage of their creative skills, rather than simply viewing them as a linguistic asset.

Speaking of foreigners and creativity, I like what Peter Schreyer (formally with Audi) is doing with Kia’s car designs.