Business English Vocabulary Lessons

All business English Vocabulary lessons published by Business English Pod.

We now have over 150 audio and video English lessons covering key aspects of business English vocabulary. Vocabulary is presented in context using realistic conversations and visuals and each lesson has a downloadable PDF transcript and online quizzes for extra practice. In addition to our vocabulary lessons, we have a great selection of lessons on business English idioms and collocations.

Use these links to jump to business vocabulary for specific areas such as finance, marketing and legal:

Below is the complete list of business English vocabulary lessons ordered by published date, starting with the most recent lessons.

BEP 405 – English Idioms about Animals (2)

BEP 405 LESSON - English Idioms about Animals (2)

Welcome back to Business English Pod the second part of our series on English idioms related to animals.

English can be a difficult language to learn. One reason, which you’ve likely discovered, is that there are so many different ways to say something. It’s not just a variety of individual words, but also the variety of idioms. Idioms can be tricky. You might hear someone say “it’s a dog eat dog world” and wonder: why are they talking about dogs?

In fact, a “dog eat dog world” is not about dogs at all. This is an idiom that describes a tough competitive environment. Just like the business world in which you’re trying to learn English so you can compete. English is full of expressions like this. And it turns out that we have dozens of idioms related to animals.

In this lesson, we’ll rejoin a conversation among three colleagues in a large corporation. Ruby, Dylan and Kyle have been discussing the Chief Investment Officer position in their company, as well as the world of investments. In their conversation they use many idioms related to animals. See if you can spot some of these as we go through the dialog, and we’ll explain them later in the debrief.

Listening Questions

1. How does Dylan describe his investment advisor’s work habits?
2. What does Ruby say to communicate to her colleagues that she doesn’t have special information to share?
3. What does Dylan believe the company needs to do to prove they’re serious about IT transformation?

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BEP 404 – English Idioms about Animals (1)

BEP 404 LESSON - English Idioms about Animals (1)

Welcome back to Business English Pod for today’s lesson on English idioms related to animals.

Like all our lessons, this one is focused on language that you can use at work and in business. When you work like a dog, you can’t waste your time learning expressions you’ll never use. And when it comes to idioms, you should focus on the ones that are commonly used and widely understood. Like the one I just used: “to work like a dog.”

In fact, there’s a ton of idioms in English that mention animals, especially dogs. That’s probably because so many of us keep them as pets. But we’ve got idioms about cats, horses, snakes, fish, cows, bears and countless other animals. And learning these idioms can add to your language toolbox and make you sound more natural. Besides, a well-placed idiom can add a lot of impact to a sentence.

In this lesson, we’ll listen to a conversation between Dylan, Ruby, and Kyle – three colleagues in a large corporation. They’re talking about the Chief Investment Officer position in their company. They discuss the former person in the role, people who applied for the job, and the person who got it. In their conversation they use many idioms related to animals. See if you can spot some of these, and we’ll explain them later in the debrief.

Listening Questions

1. How does Ruby describe Greg, the person in finance who applied for the Chief Investment Officer job?
2. How does Dylan describe Brett, the former Chief Investment Officer?
3. What expression does Ruby use to describe the current challenging market?

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Business English News 55 – 2024 Global Economic Outlook

BEN 55 LESSON - 2024 Global Economic Outlook

In this Business English News lesson on the economic outlook for 2024, we look at business English vocabulary related to the global economy and finance.

At the start of every year, economists love to make predictions. But in such a volatile world, predictions are tough to make accurately. For 2023, many economists forecasted rising inflation and a “hard landing” for the global economy. But that didn’t happen. So, what’s in store for 2024? Will the challenges of 2023 snowball into a recession? Not according to MSN.com:

Although growth is estimated to be even slower in 2024, the worst is perhaps over and headwinds are expected to ease, analysts say. For next year, the IMF expects global gross domestic product to expand by 2.9 per cent, while the World Bank forecasts 2.4 per cent growth. “Looking at 2024, we anticipate uncertainty to persist, with sub-trend growth projected across the world’s economies,” State Street Global Advisor said in its 2024 Outlook report.

All of this amounts to what many people are anticipating as a “soft landing” for the U.S. economy. The fight against inflation isn’t over, and consumers are still taking it on the chin. But turning the inflationary tide didn’t require high unemployment, as is often the case.

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Business English News 54 – Tech Takeovers

Business English News 54 - Tech Takeovers

In this Business English News lesson we look at business English vocabulary related to tech takeovers or mergers and acquisitions.

Takeovers are a huge part of the tech business, and they’re not always hostile. In fact, many young entrepreneurs build niche companies hoping to be acquired. And for the giants of tech, mergers and acquisitions are a critical growth strategy. With the personalities and egos involved, takeovers keep the news cycle buzzing, as the drama at Twitter has shown. According to the Guardian:

Elon Musk’s $44 billion acquisition of Twitter in 2022 promised the biggest shake-up since the company was founded. The former world’s richest man was keen to take on the project after becoming disillusioned by the site’s perceived biases and content moderation policy. But Twitter’s revolution became a bloodbath in the process, cutting staff by 80% to hone in on the new direction. Then they lost users and advertisers as a lean team struggled to manage disinformation, trolling and impersonation online.

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BEP 398 – English for Sales: Financial Services (2)

BEP 398 LESSON - Sales: Financial Services 2

Welcome back to Business English Pod for today’s lesson, the second in a three-part series on selling financial services.

When many people think of making money, they think of having a job and earning a salary. But if you’ve ever saved money or made an investment, you know there are other ways to make money. I mean, the money itself can do the work, if you make smart decisions with it. And just as there are lots of ways to invest money, there are lots of words we use to talk about money and investments.

In our last lesson, we were introduced to the world of “wealth management.” And we met a character in the dialog who was “planning for retirement.” These expressions, “wealth management” and “to plan for retirement,” are what we call collocations.

A collocation is a natural combination of words. Proficient English speakers know to use the verb “to plan for” with the noun “retirement.” The words combine to create a collocation, or a set expression. Learning collocations can help you sound more natural, and it can be easier to remember words together, rather than separately.

In today’s dialog, we’ll rejoin Jessica, the person who’s planning for retirement, and Robert, a wealth manager. Jessica is visiting Robert’s office to learn more about his services. And Robert is trying to gently persuade Jessica to become his client. During their conversation, they use many English collocations, which we’ll explain later in the debrief.

Listening Questions

1. What kind of approach does Robert say his firm takes to wealth management?
2. Besides managing investments, what is another service that Robert’s firm offers to people like Jessica?
3. What type of investing does Jessica say she is particularly interested in?

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