People and places – Human Resources vocabulary mind map – extra activity

When we published our first Human Resources mind map, we also promised an extra activity to help you test yourself and learn the words.

Click on the image below to open the interactive exercise. See if you can classify the words correctly.

You can read the first blog about the People and Places mind map here.

Don’t forget, we have lots more HR mind maps to share with you. So, keep visiting the blog

 


If you have any questions about the mind map or this learning activity, leave a comment below.

Do you need to develop your business English vocabulary? Send us a message.

 

People and places – Human Resources vocabulary mind map 1

Every area of business has its own jargon. Jargon is that specialist vocabulary that people who work in a particular field use to talk to each other.

Human Resources has a lot of jargon. However, we all need to know this HR jargon. It describes our position in the company, how and what we get paid, whether we will keep our job if things change in the company and all the processes we have to go through to get a new job.

Louise has created a set of mind maps covering all the areas of Human Resources vocabulary. People and places is the first.

You can see the mind map on Popplet or download a pdf.

Once you have studied the mind map, you can test yourself with the activity in the second part of this blog post.


Test yourself

How well do you know the words in the mindmap. Test yourself with this activity. The answers are at the end of this blog post.

Don’t forget you can use a dictionary to help you. The Cambridge English Dictionary has a special business English section.

Activity

Choose the correct word to complete each sentence.

1. “Who’s Juan Valera?” “Oh, he does the same job as me in our Spanish subsidiary. He’s my ___________ .”

colleague / counterpart / subordinate

2. Now we’re expanding, we need another ___________ to manage the workers on the new production line.

supervisor / technician / director

3. They’ve hired a new ___________ . She’s responsible for implementing the financial strategy.

CFO  /  COO  /  CEO

4. There’s an emergency meeting of the ___________ because a senior manager has been accused of financial misconduct.

board of directors  /  management board  /  supervisory board

5. A ___________ ‘s role is to provide independent oversight to issues in the company.

chairman  /  vice president / non-executive director

6. How many ___________ work in the company?

workforce  /  employees  /  personnel

7. Someone who works for the state is a ___________ .

civil servant   /  foreman  /  superior

8. People who work in offices are called ___________ workers.

manual  /  skilled  /  white collar

9. The ___________ always opens the AGM with a review of the last year.

foreman   /   superior  /  chairman

10. “Why’s the  ___________ being relocated?” “Because the rent in London is way too high now.”

head office  /  operations  /  management

 

 


Answers

1. “Who’s Juan Valera?” “Oh, he does the same job as me in our Spanish subsidiary. He’s my counterpart.”

2. Now we’re expanding, we need another supervisor to manage the workers on the new production line.

3. They’ve hired a new CFO. She’s responsible for implementing the financial strategy.

4. There’s an emergency meeting of the supervisory board because a senior manager has been accused of financial misconduct.

5. A non-executive director‘s role is to provide independent oversight to issues in the company.

6. How many employees work in the company?

7. Someone who works for the state is a civil servant.

8. People who work in offices are called white collar workers.

9. The chairman always opens the AGM with a review of the last year.

10. “Why’s the head office being relocated?” “Because the rent in London is way too high now.”


 

Did you find that useful? Download a pdf of the mind map.

There are lots more HR vocabulary mind maps to come. We will add a new one each month.

If you can’t wait until then, check the website again soon for extra activities using the words from this mind map.

 

There are lots more mind maps on the Stratford Teachers blog.

Telephone vocabulary

Lose your job

Internet vocabulary

Trade vocabulary


If you have any questions about the mind map, leave a comment below.

Do you need to develop your business English vocabulary? Send us a message.

 

Food idioms

Do you know your onions (or which side your bread is buttered)?

Inspired by the shopping bags from a national supermarket, Joy decided to write a short exercise on English food idioms.

(This exercise first appeared in our Autumn 2018 newsletter. We publish our newsletter four times a years. Click here to subscribe.)

Exercise

In English, we have lots of idioms related to food. Are you familiar with these? Try the exercise. The answers are at the bottom.

[Learning tip: You can find the meaning of all the idioms in this exercise in the Macmillan English Dictionary.]

 

First, read the examples. Can you identify the idiom?

‘If you’re not sure, just ask David – he really knows his onions when it comes to the new regulations.’

‘By the time we got home, I was exhausted, but the kids were full of beans.’

‘I don’t really like the design of that new office building – it’s just not my cup of tea.’

‘Emma’s ideas are often a bit crazy, but this latest one really takes the biscuit!’

‘Since he was made unemployed, I think Alan’s finding it hard to accept that it’s his wife who’s bringing home the bacon these days, not him.’

‘He spent much more time working on the Chairman’s latest project than ours – he knows which side his bread’s buttered!’

 

Now, match each idiom on the left with the correct meaning on the right.

1. know your onions a) to earn money to support the family
2. (be) full of beans b) to be the most silly or annoying thing in a series of things
3. not (be) someone’s cup of tea c) to know who to be nice to or what to do in order to gain advantages for yourself
4. take the biscuit d) not to like or consider interesting
5. bring home the bacon e) to have a very good knowledge of a specific subject
6. know which side your bread’s buttered f) to have lots of energy

How many do you think you got right? Check the answers below.

 

Answers

1e; 2f; 3d; 4b; 5a; 6c.

 

Did you find this useful? We have lots of other articles about English idioms. Click here to see a list.

If you have any questions or comments, leave a reply below.

Do you want to learn English idioms? Send us a message.

 

Telephone words – vocabulary mind map

Time for a new mind map. This one focuses on the vocabulary of phones and phoning.

The mind map has four sections. Three sections contain the nouns used to talk about and describe phones and phone numbers. The fourth section has a collection of verb collocations for talking about phone calls.

You can view the mind map on Popplet or click the button below to download the image file.

DOWNLOAD

After you have done that, test your knowledge with this short quiz. The answers are at the end of the blog post.

Quiz

Questions 1 – Verb collocations

Which of these verbs form collocations with the words ‘a call’?

    1. make
    2. miss
    3. do
    4. get
    5. take
    6. put
    7. hang up
    8. give

Question 2 – Common mistakes

Each of these sentences contains a common mistake. Identify and correct each mistake.

  1. I have to call to my colleagues in Italy.
  2. I’ll put you through my boss.
  3. Your client called earlier. Can you call back him?
  4. In my job, I do a lot of calls with customers.

Question 3 – part of a phone

Match these words to the parts of the phone.

  1. earpiece
  2. screen
  3. keypad
  4. handset
  5. call button

 

 

Now check the answers to see if you were right.

Answers

Question 1

make a call

miss a call

get a call

take a call

give someone a call

Question 2

  1. I have to call my colleagues in Italy.
  2. I’ll put you through to my boss.
  3. Can you call him back?
  4. In my job, I make a lot of calls to customers.

Question 3

  1. earpiece (b)
  2. screen (c)
  3. keypad (d)
  4. handset (a)
  5. call button (e)

 

Other telephone language

Here is some other blogs posts focusing on English for making phone calls.

Checking and clarifying on the phone – 1

Checking and clarifying on the phone – 2

Spellng words with the International Radio Alphabet


 

If you have any questions about the mind map, leave a comment below.

Do you need to practise speaking English on the telephone? Send us a message.

 

Checking and clarifying – test yourself

There are two aspects to successful communication. The first is making yourself understood. The second is understanding the other person. In order to be a good communicator in English, you need to develop both.

So, when you are speaking in English with somebody you should check and be clear that you understand correctly. This even more important when you can’t see the other person’s face, such as on the telephone.

in January we published a video demonstrating how to use checking and clarifying phrases on the telephone.

Here’s a simple interactive exercise you can use to test yourself or review the language from the video. It’s an easy game, click on the ? symbol to see the instructions.


If you have any questions about this exercise, leave a comment below.

Do you need to practise speaking English on the telephone? Send us a message.

 

Socialising and networking in English

Networking in English by Pete Sharma and Barney BarrettOne of the most common reasons people need to improve their English is so they can socialise and network with other people. In the business world, these other people are colleagues, customers and clients – both current and future.

Barney and his regular collaborator, Pete Sharma, wrote a book called Networking in English. It is full of language and advice about how to be a more effective networker.

In the introduction to the book, Pete and Barney list nine skills a language student needs to be a good socialiser and communicator in social situations.

  1. You are able to express yourself fairly fluently.
  2. You have the vocabulary to speak about a range of topics.
  3. You have reasonably accurate basic grammar.
  4. You have fairly good listening skills, and have strategies to deal with problems like listening to fast speech and catching the main message.
  5. You have a knowledge of the same kinds of communication strategies used by good native speaker communicators, such as an understanding of non-verbal communication.
  6. You know the typical forms of interaction in various social situations, such as in a restaurant, and can use a good range of appropriate and useful phrases.
  7. You speak with clear pronunciation.
  8. You are sensitive to cultural differences between you and people from other parts of the world.

(From Networking in English, Barrett and Sharma (Macmillan: 2010)

How would you rate yourself for each of these skills? Be honest. Many people speaking English for business can talk with confidence about their companies, products and services but do not have enough vocabulary to make small talk. Some people are able to talk and talk and talk but find it difficult to understand when other people are talking, especially at noisy social events. Other people find socialising with people from other countries and cultures stressful because they are unsure about differences in acceptable behaviour.

Here are a few videos and activities you can use to test or develop your knowledge and skills.

Making contact

Airport conversationListen to two conversations between people meeting each other in social situations. They use a lot of standard phrases. Notice the questions they ask and the answers they give. Think about the questions and answers you would give in the same situation.

 

The rules of small talk

The Rules of Making Small talk in English videoThe rules of small talk are simple and easy to remember but how do you apply them in English? Watch our video. Notice how the people in the video respond in the wrong way. Pause the video and think about how you would reply before seeing the answer we gave.

 

Stratford Teachers pub quiz

Everywhere you go in the world, the restaurants of France, the cafés of Italy, the diners of America, the hawker centres of Singapore and the pubs of Britain, there are rules and vocabulary unique to those places that are ‘natural’ to local people but confusing to visitors from other countries.

Try our short quiz about the vocabulary used in British pubs, what it means and how we use it. What vocabulary and advice would you give to a visitor to your country?

 

Of course, the best way to build up your socialising and networking in English skills is to practise with a teacher who can give you instant correction and advice.

Contact us to find out how we can help you become a better, more effective and more confident socialiser and communicator in social situations.

 

 

Checking and clarifying on the phone

Business English - Talking on the phone

Speaking on the phone can be more challenging than speaking face to face. You don’t always hear exactly what the other person said.

In order to avoid misunderstandings, it’s important to check and be clear you understand correctly.

In our first video of 2018, Louise and Simon play Kate and Tony, two colleagues making a phone call.

The first part of the video shows what can happen when there is a misunderstanding on the phone. The second part shows you how to use a set of phrases for checking and clarifying to make sure you understand.

 

Video by Barney

 

Here are the checking and clarifying phrases they use in their phone call.

Sorry, Kate could you say that again, please?
Sorry, Tony. I didn’t catch that. Could you say it again, please?
Sorry, did you say ten thirty or two thirty?
Sorry. I can’t hear you , Kate. Can you speak up a little?

 

Was this useful for you? Watch our videos and download information about using the International Radio Alphabet to spell words over the phone.

UPDATE (24/03/2018) You can now test your knowledge of the checking and clarifying phrases with this interactive exercise.


If you have any questions about this video, leave a comment below.

Do you need to practise speaking English on the telephone? Send us a message.