Business English is a popular topic in language schools and companies. And you probably feel the same pressure, that you have to master this Business English so that you are not ashamed of speaking at a meeting, talking to a colleague from another country or making a presentation.
You should determine what kind of skills you need to develop. Writing? Talking? Reading? Understanding hearing? Everything? In this article I will give you the materials for the exercise of everything!
If speaking is super important, remember that you should practice this ability regularly so that you can easily talk to the client at a meeting. A short exchange of opinions once in a while will not help you much.
Business English recently has become one of the basic requirements on the labour market in the Europe. It is no longer enough just to use English fluently and today it is becoming desirable to have an excellent knowledge of the business and corporate language of savoir-vivre.
The problem is that you do not know exactly how to learn Business English effectively. And that’s why I decided to gather some ideas for you on how to boost English business.
Business English Pod
Business English Pod is a very interesting page with lots of podcasts and lessons on various business topics. Lessons are grouped by subject, you can also search by level. We also get free materials (version for student and teacher) and presentations that can be used during lessons.
BBC Business Daily
Great proposal for business English. The new BBC Business Daily podcasts, appear on the website every day and cover a very wide range of business related topics. You can download and listen to any podcast at any time.
Businessweek, The Economist, Bloomberg, Guardian Business Department or Financial Times magazine. You can try to read them online.
Individual classes with teacher
If you have a larger budget, you can opt for individual classes with the teacher. The higher cost of such lessons will compensate you for the fact that they will be tailored to your needs and you will not have to compete for the teacher’s attention with anyone else. It is best to choose a teacher who regularly conducts in-company courses and has experience in teaching. Remember, too, that if you want to train vocabulary in a particular field, make sure before choosing a particular teacher that he or she has sufficient knowledge in this field.
Watching the tv original series is which I recommend. Is there a more pleasant way to get to know new words than at the same time relaxing comfortably on the couch? TV series which show the realities of a specific industry are the best for most of people. Here are some examples:
The Office – Sales & general BE
Suits – Legal English
Ugly Betty – fashion industry & office English
Mad Men – advertising, sales & marketing
Business English Site
Business English Site is a one of the most popular sites for studying Business English. It includes not only grammatical exercises or vocabulary exercises, but also quiz exercises for reading and hearing understanding. All of this, of course, for free.
YouTube – Business Insider, Forbes, Big Think
The most effective method of teaching vocabulary is learning through materials which naturally support our interest or which we identify with in some way. So it’s worth subscribing, for example, to one of the channels on YouTube, which I listed at the top and look for content related to the industry you are working on.
Business course or specialised course
The first and most obvious proposition is a dedicated Business English course. However, before you enrol at a language school, you must know what to expect from such a course.On some classes you have lessons organized around preselected topics, on the other hand it can be quite monotonous.
In such classes you will probably learn vocabulary from the most popular industries such as: e-commerce, services, marketing, finance, sales etc. and you will learn the rules of formal communication within the company and in relations with customers.
Such courses have one basic disadvantage – they are usually very general. So if you need something more specific, I would rather prefer to choose a specialised course, such as English for Marketing or Financial English.
Learning from others in the company
There is probably no better source of business vocabulary than the company you work for, especially if it is a multinational corporation and you are in contact with native speakers on a daily basis. I always recommend easy, but very effective method to improve everyday communication.
The relevant books are also an excellent source of Business English, but not every book is suitable for independent learning. I am not in favour of using typical BE textbooks because they are not well adapted to work without help of a teacher. Instead, you can choose one of the books below, which I recommend.
A. Ashley, Oxford Book of Commercial Correspondence – OUP
Bill Mascull, Business Vocabulary in Use Intermediate & Advanced – Cambridge