A few years ago I was travelling in Thailand and took an overnight trip from Bangkok to Kanchanaburi, to visit the famous 'Bridge on the River Kwai'. I was keen to take the train over the bridge and went to the ticket office of the small railway station to purchase my fare.
As I approached the counter, I greeted the ticket seller with the traditional Thai greeting 'Sawasdee kha'. His eyes lit up and he wore a huge smile as he exclaimed with great surprise, in English, 'You speak Thai!'
Sadly, this simple greeting was the limit of my Thai language skills and thankfully, the ticket seller had very good English. The small effort I had made to greet him in his own language meant that this gentleman went out of his way to help me feel welcome and enjoy my visit to his home town.
So often, complexity is worn as a badge of honour, but the greater the complexity, the smaller the audience. Complex, technical language is OK when you're talking with other specialists in your own field, because you're all native speakers. If you want to get your message to a wider audience, you need to speak their language.
The ticket seller understood that most of his customers were foreign tourists, who wouldn't speak Thai. So, he had made an effort to learn enough of the languages his customers spoke. Starting from a perspective of respect and empathy helps to create warm connections that allow the conversation to continue, in any language.
Who is your audience and what language do they speak?