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English Skills for Business Communication | eHow.

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English Skills for Business Communication


By Andrew Button, eHow Contributor

English communication skills are valued highly in the 21st century workplace in
all corners of the globe. According to a report by the English language teaching
organization Global English, 92 percent of workers surveyed around the globe
reported using English on the job. Clearly, English proficiency is an important
skill in the modern business world. Writing, interpretation and speaking are just
some of the many skills used in business English.

Listening
Listening skills are very important in business. Business people attend
presentations, negotiations and meetings regularly, and at these types of events, it
is crucially important that everyone understands the details of what is being said.
Business English listening skills go beyond simply paying attention; a good
listener asks questions and takes notes on the contents of a presentation.

Reading
Business professionals of all types read English documents every day. Employees

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English Skills for Business Communication | eHow.com 27/04/12 14:46

are often informed of policy changes through letters from management, while
managers themselves often communicate with each other by email and other
written means. Beyond technical comprehension, reading skills include
interpretation and critical reflection (i.e. thinking about what is implied in a written
document in addition to what is stated).

Writing
Many business professionals use formal and informal English writing styles in
their day to day communications. Professionals, such as lawyers and consultants,
use highly technical writing styles unique to their professions. Managers often
communicate informally through email and other media, but may be responsible
for some technical writing (e.g. statements in annual/quarterly reports) as well.

Speaking Skills
Speaking skills are crucial in business English. Conversational skills, which
include turn-taking, diction and inflection, are used by all types of businessmen
every day. Presentation skills, too, are important in business. Business leaders give
presentations in many contexts: in meetings, at conferences, and to employees.
Presentation skills used in business English communication include public
speaking, "off the cuff" thinking (when responding to questions from an audience,
for example), and slideshow/multimedia integration (such as making reference to
videoclips and other media).

Vocabulary Skills
In business English, the ability to be concise and to the point is valued. Thus,
possessing a wide vocabulary and being able to select precisely the right words to
describe ideas is an indispensable skill set in business English.

Nonverbal Skills
While nonverbal skills are not technically part of the English language, business
leaders need to use tonality and body language that match the words they use, as
nonverbal communication conveys a great deal of information. It would be
inappropriate to use an excited tone and excessive gesticulation when informing an
employee that he is about to be terminated, just as it is inappropriate to be stiff and
monotone while giving a presentation. The ability to choose proper tonality and
body language to convey a message can be broken down into several smaller
skills: diction, empathy, voice control and body language control.

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