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Effective Ways to Practice Business English

April 22nd, 2008

Chances are, if you own or operate a business, you’ll either need to converse in English or make sure that someone in your business is able to do so. Regardless of whether you need to generate sales flyers or negotiate complex contracts, being able to understand business transactions in English is crucial. Unfortunately, the best time to practice these skills isn’t when you’re about to start a conversation in English for the first time! Fortunately, there are a number of ways that you can hone your skills – even if you aren’t able to engage in active conversations.

Experiment and Share Materials That You Create

If you need to get better at generating sales flyers in English, you can start by designing them and write them in your native language. Once you have your ideas sorted out and organized, go ahead and translate the text into English. Next, find an English speaking person who can give you an assessment of your results. By repeating this process, you’ll start to get a better understanding of the syntax and flow of natural-sounding English.

Attend Town and City Meetings

If you live in a primarily English-speaking country, chances are you can attend town or city meetings. While these events are typically designed to discuss local governmental issues, you’ll find that money and contract negotiations are also often brought up for discussion. As a result, you’ll get some ideas about the words and vocabulary you might encounter in a business meeting. Don’t worry if you lose track of the discussion; you’ll still be able to study body language, and help put those cues together with the tone of the words being spoken.

Watch Business Videos

There are many types of videos that can help you learn business English. Aside from videos that are dedicated to helping you learn English, you might be able to find specific videos that are designed to train salesmen and distributors. Although many of these videos focus on teaching you how to work with a specific company, they’ll provide you with a valuable opportunity to practice your comprehension of sales and business type conversations.

Join Internet Business Groups

Chances are there’s some part of operating a business that interests you more than others, whether it’s marketing, accounting, direct sales or some other area. Search on the internet to find news groups or forums that are dedicated to your specific area of interest. Find and join one of these groups that use the English language. You’ll have an excellent opportunity to study the words and phrases that are used in a business setting, as well as converse about your own experiences.

As with any other area of learning, you’ll need to practice and dedicate yourself to learning the nuances of business English. Depending on your interests and objectives, you can choose methods that allow you to actively participate in conversations, or you may simply decide to choose meetings and tapes that offer you an opportunity to observe and practice your listening skills. You’ll soon be on your way to speaking fluent business English with confidence.