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Insider's Tips on Learning Business English - 3 Things You Should Know

2 months ago
The knowledge of Business English is in strong demand from companies around the world. If you are looking to take the next step in your language skills or would like to sharpen your current skills, maybe the area of Business English is something to explore. This discussion is written from a teacher's perspective to encourage students interested in learning Business English.

1. Knowing Your Expectations Improves Both Happiness and Success Rates.

As a language teacher, I cannot tell you how many times I have asked students what their goal is and heard the response, "I want to be fluent" or, the sister reply, "I want to sound like a native speaker." As a response, I have learned to make my questions more specific and now ask questions like, "What skills do you hope to gain by our (next, third, fifth) class?" With these questions, planning and evaluation of precise goals are more easily defined. With a clear path decided upon, we both end up happier, and we both end up more successfully able to track progress over time. Learning Business English is no different; In fact, it is even more specific.
In learning Business English, specific tasks are discussed such as 'How to write an e-mail', appropriate phone etiquette, presentation skills, or specific vocabulary for financial analysis. Specific objectives must be achieved in order to increase workplace performance with every lesson. In other words: Define what is needed, communicate those goals and eliminate the rest. Business English is how you apply your language skills to real-life scenarios, and like the realm of business, planning is key. The tasks learned should be those that make work life easier, the ultimate measure of success.

2. Combining Grammar with Business Topics Significantly Improves Learning

Business English is more than a collection of vocabulary, jargon, and catchphrases. If proper grammar is not used to make comprehensible sentences, it defeats the purpose of the language. This seems obvious when worded this way, sure. However, many students that decide to learn Business English think that their days of studying grammar are over, and this is simply not true (enter: phrasal verbs). If even *a little* grammar is combined with Business English terminology and theory, imagine how impressed your colleagues (or better, your boss) will be with this entirely new way of speaking!

3. Using Outside Sources Creates a More Realistic Environment

The days of heavy textbooks are over...and in Business English, unnecessary! A textbook can be industry-specific but is usually not precise enough for a company. I encourage you to use this opportunity instead to bring resources from work (if possible) to customize lessons. This includes leaflets, brochures, company information, and company videos. For example, if the company is publicly listed and you work in the area of accounting, take this opportunity to evaluate how to read financial statements in your sessions. Maybe you work in the area of Supply Chain Management. This would be a chance to discuss the safety protocols necessary for your job, or the processes needed to make your work possible. This way, you are learning information about your work, for your work and it is customized for the tasks you want to learn more about in the English Language. In other words: No wasted effort.
So you don't want to share Company information, or it's limited? That's ok, consider discussing what is in the News related to your industry or career. Online newspapers, magazines, trade journals, or even youtube videos. This information is not only up-to-date but also business-relevant. Using these sources is a great way to make discussion the centermost point for the lesson, helping you obtain more relevant skills for the workplace.

If you're interested in learning Business English, please contact me. I am currently running a coupon special for 10% off using the code SUCCESS. I look forward to seeing you in class!