BEP 156 – English for Socializing: Networking (Part 2)

Business English SocializingThis is the second of a two-part Business English Pod lesson on business networking.

Networking is all about people and connections. You never know when someone you meet at a conference or trade show may be able to help your business in the future. Likewise, you may be able to help someone else out. So building and maintaining a network of business contacts is essential. …

BEP 155 – English for Socializing: Networking (Part 1)

Business English SocializingThis is the first of a two-part Business English Pod series on networking.

In business, so much depends on who you know. A network is a group of business contacts that have the resources to help each other out. Former and current colleagues, outside business associates, vendors, friends, acquaintances – these can all be part of your network. …

BEP 96 – Socializing: Business Meals

In most parts of the world, having lunch or dinner together is an important part of doing business. In places such as North America, eating meals is a way of building a relationship or celebrating a partnership. And in other cultures, such as China, much of the real work of making deals actually often gets done over the dinner table.

No matter where you are doing business, it’s important to be able to handle the basics of dining out. This includes ordering food, recommending dishes, proposing a toast, and paying for the check, among other things. These skills will be the focus of this episode.

BEP 78 INT – Socializing: Discussing Politics

They say there’s one rule of conversation that you should always follow in business – don’t talk about politics, sex or religion. Actually, however, it seems like 90% of casual conversations are about just those things – politics, sex and religion. So in this episode, we’ll be focusing on one of these topics – politics. We’ll be learning some language that will help you cope with this difficult topic.

There’s a trick to talking about politics in business. In international business culture, it’s usually better not to express strong opinions. The focus is generally on the exchange of information rather than on debate, because the main goal is to maintain harmonious relations. Often, we state our opinions non-committally. That means we don’t commit ourselves to an opinion – in other words, we don’t voice a strong view one way or the other. Instead, we prefer to be vague, or ambiguous. This strategy helps avoid conflict.

BEP 77 INT – Happy Hour: After-Work Socializing

In many countries, having a drink after work with colleagues is a popular way to relax: This kind of socializing helps us get to know each other and to build team spirit. To attract customers who are just getting off work, many bars and clubs have a “happy hour.” This is a promotion in the early evening, usually lasting an hour or so, when pubs and bars offer a special prices on drinks, such as “buy one get one free” or “all drinks half price.” So in this business English podcast, we will explore language that we can use to socialize with colleagues during happy hour or during other informal occasions.

Whether you drink alcohol or not, in many places around the world you will likely be invited to the bar or pub with colleagues. It’s important to know how to offer to buy drinks for others and how to make polite excuses when you’ve had enough or when it’s time to go. The same skills are also useful for other types of after-work social activities.

In the dialog, we join Greg, a manager, and three people in his team – Joanna, Gary, and Ben – as they order.

Listening Questions:

1) Who is paying for the first round of drinks? How can you tell?
2) Who is the person who doesn’t drink?
3) When it’s time for her to go, what excuse does Joanna make?

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