Learning English from scratch can be a pretty daunting challenge! Like with learning any new language, we sometimes have to ‘rewire’ our brains to understand things like grammar and sentence structures – rules of language that might be very different in our own, native language. Fortunately, you don’t have to become a fluent master of English to communicate effectively. By opting to learn business English you can fast-track your learning – enabling you to get on, and start working with other English speakers across the world!
What is ‘Business English’?
Business English is a part of something called English for Specific Purposes, also sometimes known as ESP. Other forms of ESP can specialize in Academic English for students and researchers, or Aviation English for pilots and air traffic controllers. There are many different variants, but business English is tailored to enable clear communication across the world for the purposes of work, industry, negotiation and entrepreneurship. At Stafford House we teach several different Professional English courses across our schools including Business English and Professional Certificates.
Top Tips to Boost your Business English!
Anyone who wants to learn Business English should think about picking up some of these great learning habits!
Listen to Business News and read Business Newspapers and Magazines
Immersing yourself in the vocabulary and natural speech of the business world is a great way to learn some of the jargon (technical terms) and colloquialisms (informal slang and metaphor) that are part of Professional English. You’ll soon be able to understand the difference between a stock falling and a stock plummeting, for example! Although hopefully, neither of those stocks are going to be yours!
Practice Presentations and Pitches with English Speakers
Getting other people involved in your learning is always a great idea. Having others help you master the language skills you need to deliver a pitch confidently, and respond quickly to questions, is going to hugely help your learning process, as well as identify problem areas that you might need to focus on!
Actively Ask friends and colleagues to correct your English
Most people may probably consider ‘correcting’ your English to be rude or impolite, and they might also worry about seeming to be condescending. That’s why you need to actively ask them to help you get better. If you make grammatical errors in emails or speak English in a way that others might find difficult to understand – tell them that not only is it ok, it's helping you get better! A problem shared is a problem halved! Or perhaps quartered! All depends on how many people you’ve got to help you boost your Business English!
Make a list of words you commonly misspell, pronounce incorrectly, or find hard to remember.
Everyone has their week points in many different areas and language is no different. Whether it’s simple words that fill a complex function (such as prepositions – ‘to’ ‘from’ ‘next to’ ‘under’ etc), or more complex words such as Literally, which, in itself is a simple word – but has had its usage changed from one that describes a situation or an event at it actually, and factually took place. For example: ‘I literally spilt coffee all over my desk’ would be appropriate – whereas someone may say ‘I literally died last night’, maybe in the context of them finding something so funny they found it hard to breathe! Making a list of words you find troublesome, and then consulting your friends from point 3, can make a huge difference!