Business English: Role-playing activities part 3

8th May 2020

The final activity sheet is devised for a totally different type of client. This firm uses urban, street lingo (language), trying to attract a young, modern and dynamic workforce. They attempt to stand out from other companies by their use of non-standard vernacular and images.

There are some notes at the end of the blog to help explain some of the vocabulary.

TEACHERS’ NOTE: When I make physical copies, I use an appropriate font, looking like a hand-written flyer, so play around with the style and alignment.

GOTAJOB INNIT

Fun work for fun peeps

Here at Gotajob Innit, we try to sort you out with cool work, so you can get some cash to party and buy some wicked stuff. Work don’t have to bring you down, man 🙂 it can be a laugh …… INNIT !!!

Why do this ?

When you could do this ?

Fun work for fun peeps

Yo – check out these little beauties

1 Junior web designer. Travel company

Young, energetic company seek candidate to join their lively and fast-moving team. Some experience preferable. Basic programming skills essential. Qualifications not necessary, talent and potential more important.

Candidate must be fun, energetic and able to work to a deadline. Candidate will be required to submit an example of own work.

Salary starts at £17K per annum plus bonus.

2 PR – party planner

We love this job – we wanna do it. Young and amazing person needed to promote events and organise parties. Take something boring and make it F U N

Got to be able to work and drink, and organise and drink, and shout at people.

No experience, no qualifications … can you drink ? This could be your perfect job. Salary – lots of fun and drink and also some money.

3 Lotteria shift manager

Join this fun, lively, bright red hangout and get experience in the food and retail industry. We know you ain’t going to stay long, but tell your friends and give them a discount ! You’ll be in charge of a small team so you can be boss, a little, and tell people to clean the floor hahaha ! The money is rubbish, but you can eat all the junk your stomach can digest. Great way to meet other cool cats. You can wear the cool uniform and the uber-cool hat – WOW !

PowerPoint 프레젠테이션

Good luck, peeps !

Notes:

Wicked means very bad or evil in standard English, but in urban talk, it means very good, amazing and fantastic.

Gotajob (got a job ?) is taken from a British TV show from the 1980s, when unemployment was high. One of the characters walks from job site to job site, asking, aggressively, “Gotajob ?”

Innit is urban vernacular for the tag question ‘isn’t it ?’ as in, “Hot today, isn’t it ?” or “Hot today, innit ?”

Peeps is taken from a British TV comedian, and is short for ‘people’, but was later used to mean someone’s close friends, ‘my peeps.’

Rubbish is what the British use for the US English trash or garbage. Also used to express contempt for something that is not good e.g. “The film was rubbish !”

Lotteria is a Japanese fast-food chain popular throughout east Asia. You could substitute it for a similar franchise in your country.

Business English: What’s on the agenda ?

5th May 2020

Job interviews, and vocabulary for business meetings

AirAsia India Career For Freshers In 2020 [Apply Now Online]

Writing exercise

A candidate is writing to inquire about a vacancy at your factory:

Dear Owner,

Please allow me to introduce myself. My name is Nguyen Trung Hieu and I am 22 with a business degree from TDT University in HCM City.

I wish to start my business career and your company has a very good reputation.

Do you have a position for me within your organisation ?

I have worked as bookkeeper for my uncle’s business in Nha Trang Province and also I worked at Coffee House when I was a student in order to make some extra money.

Please write back if you can help me

Yours respectfully

Nguyen Trang Hieu

How would you reply to this request ?

What were the positive and negative attributes of this letter ?

Now … your turn. You want to apply for the job with Air Asia in India (don’t forget, flight attendants can be both men and women, although the advert doesn’t emphasis this fact).

How would you write the letter ?

What facts are important ? What skills do you think you need ? What type of personality is best suited to this service-orientated job ?

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Meeting language

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Here is a transcript of a short business meeting. Look at all the non-standard English, the phrasal verbs, idioms and expressions that make up so much of natural English.

Read the text and role play, focusing on intonation and stress.

Right … I think we should start now. Thanks. 

  1. OK, so, is everybody here? Who are we waiting for? Hmmm … well, I think we’ll have to make a start without them. We’ve got a lot to get through this afternoon. 
  2. Right, well, as you know, the purpose of today’s meeting is to see where we are with the marketing plan, and to work out what we still need to do before the launch, which is now just six weeks away. 
  3. By the end of the meeting, we need to have a list of firm action points for the next month. Hopefully we’ll then need only one more meeting next month to tie up any remaining loose ends.
  4. Did everyone get a copy of the agenda I sent round? OK, good. 
  5. As I say, we’ve got a lot to get through, so please let’s stick to the agenda. I’ve set aside two hours for this meeting, and we really can’t afford to run over. Ideally, we can cover everything in an hour and a half. Does that sound reasonable? 
  6. Ah, Helena, come and take a seat. We started without you. 
  7. So perhaps we can get the ball rolling by going through the list of action points from the last meeting. 
  8. Bill, you were going to look into the costs of the various options that came up last time. Could you tell us what you found out?

Now match the nine steps in the meeting introduction (1–9) to the descriptions.

  1. Stating the desired outcome. 
  2. Introducing the first point on the agenda. 
  3. Getting people’s attention, interrupting small talk 
  4. Handing over to the first speaker. 
  5. Dealing with non-attendees. 
  6. Dealing with a late arrival. 
  7. Explaining time limits and procedures. 
  8. Stating the purpose 
  9. Checking people have seen the agenda. 

Answers at end of blog

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A successful conclusion to a meeting

Answers:

Right … I think we should start now. Thanks.  = 3) Getting people’s attention

  1. = 5) Dealing with non-attendees
  2. = 8) Stating the purpose
  3. = 1) Stating desired outcome
  4. = 9) Checking agenda
  5. = 7) Time limits
  6. = 6) Late arrival
  7. = 2) First point
  8. = 4) Handing over to first speaker

Adult Speaking Class, Level 3. Theme: Job interviews

12th February 2020

Image result for job interview

Interview Language

Many interviews have similar questions. Read the following and then role-play with a partner. Feel free to add your own information, or make up something new.

Possible questions:

What experience do you have ? // What do you know about the company ? // Have you ever had to work to a deadline ?

Image result for great job interviews

Tell me about yourself

I was born in …. and I graduated from …. University in 2014 with a major in Business Administration. Since then I’ve had two year’s experience in administrative work at ABC and XYZ Corporation.

I’m a very organised person, well-balanced and efficient. I’m hard-working and dedicated.

In my free time, I like to travel and I love to paint. Furthermore, I enjoy going out having coffee with friends.

What do you know about (COMPANY) ?

XXX are an established company with a good reputation. They help …….. and there are over (xx) sites in VN (or your country).

What are your strengths ?

I feel I am easy-going, hard-working, careful and diligent. I think my greatest strength is my positive outlook, even during times of stress. I can work under pressure and I really enjoy a challenge. Lastly, I like working in a team.

What are your weaknesses ?

Well, my English isn’t perfect, so this will be a great chance to improve. Maybe I can be a little quiet sometimes; that’s why working as part of a team will help bring me out.

Can you give an example of when you had to deal with an angry customer ?

One time, a customer didn’t like the price of a visa, and he began shouting and getting angry. I asked him if I could explain the reason. I then told him how it wasn’t our fault, but that I understood his anger and said sorry. Then I told him he could check elsewhere, but we would still be happy to serve him. He calmed down, said sorry to me and bought the visa and was happy.

Where do you see yourself in two years ?

My short-terms goals are to work hard and efficiently, so I can master this job. However, in the long-term, I would be interested in possibly doing more courses so I could be a manager.

What can you bring to the job ?

I’m very friendly and enjoy working with people. I always try to be happy at work and share my positive outlook. I’m very motivated and open to learning. I’m very excited about being a part of this great company.

Do you have any questions ?

May I just ask, what career opportunities are there at XXX ?

It is not a good idea to ask immediately about salary, money and bonuses, although this is an important part of the interview process.

Image result for great job interviews
Congratulations, when can you start ?

Listening practice

From BBC Learning English: http://www.bbc.co.uk/learningengli0sh/english/features/english-at-work/02-the-interruption

A good example that comes to mind…

I’m particularly proud of…

Time-keeping is important to me.

Firstly, this job is an ideal match for my skills and experience.

Secondly, …

Above all, the reason I want this job is …

Image result for great job interviews

Key words: 

highly motivated

can work on my own initiative

proactive

team-player

ready for a challenge

Speaking Practice:

Now you have some new words and phrases, interview each other again, making sure to really sound like the ideal person for the job.

Working in English. Being a TA (teaching assistant)

Image result for teaching assistant
Image result for angry parents

How would you handle (answer) these questions ?

How often do you communicate in English ? Have you ever used English in a work environment ?

Two teachers need things at the same time; how would you prioritise ?

How would you deal with a rude teacher ? What would you do if you had a problem with a certain teacher ?

Could you work as a team member ? Could you take orders from a younger person ? 

Some students come to you and say they don’t like a certain teacher. What would you tell them ?

Teachers earn much more than Viet staff. How do you feel about that ?

Some parents may be very angry about a grading a teaching gave. If they came and shouted at you, how would you cope ?

Can you give an example of a time when you dealt effectively with an angry customer ?

How do you see this role ? What do you imagine you’ll be doing ?

The work may become routine. Do you think you will get bored ?

Part of the job-description involves keeping a safe environment. What do you think that means ?

A child has a nosebleed; what would you do ?

A child is being noisy and shouting when the teacher speaks. What would you do ?

A child swears in class, but his parents are angry at you when you criticise the student. However, the teacher insists you phone the parents to complain.

Image result for teaching assistant unrurly class