If you need to use business English, it’s very important you use it correctly.
Using English well in business can help you get more clients and advance your career much faster.
However, if the language you use seems unprofessional, this can harm your business.
How can you know the correct business English to use?
Best Method for Improving Business English Systematically
Spending some time studying abroad to improve your business English and to learn the culture is probably the most beneficial.
Whether you go to a school or not, you’ll need to continue improving on your own.
The best way to do this is by remembering the language learning loop.
There are four stages: Discover, Observe, Experiment, and Learn. (Then repeat)
Never forget this loop. As long as you study within the loop, you will always be progressing with what you need right now.
Share This: Studying business English on your own? Remember to Discover, Observe, Experiment, and Learn.
There are many ways to study within this loop, but I want to show you how you can use Twitter and Google to start improving your business English right now.
Guide to Self Study Online with the Learning Loop
Step One – Discover
You discover new language any time you have input. For learning business English, you want to make sure this input is business related. You also want it to be a similar kind of business to what you do.
Let’s say you’re a banker. It would help you to read and listen to sources that talk about economics. Try to find some that you enjoy.
If you want to use Twitter in the discovery step, you might choose to follow accounts like the Wall Street Journal.
Step Two – Observe.
When you observe, you just want to watch how certain language is used in many different situations.
Looking at the Wall Street Journal Twitter feed, I found:
As the world-wide economy slowly heals, central banks take different paths to recovery.
You look at this, think about what you can learn from it. I see two interesting phrases: ‘economy slowly heals’, and ‘banks take different paths to recovery’.
I write these down in my notebook. I now need to observe them in other places.
You can try an advanced Twitter search, or you can search on Google with operators. You want to find those phrases in many different situations. Change plural forms to singular, use a ‘*’ to let Google fill in that word, and try other things to find a variety of natural business English examples.
Write everything down with the original phrases, define unknown words, etc.
Step Three – Experiment
Experimenting is where you take what you discovered and observed, and try to use it in an original way.
Twitter can be great for this. You can start a conversation by using one of the phrases, and then asking your followers what they think.
Basically, you want to test how well you use the language. If people can understand what you said, then you are probably using it correctly. If not, try to ask a teacher or native speaker directly, “Am I saying this right?”
Step Four – Learn
If you make mistakes in the Experiment stage, learn from those mistakes and make notes about what you learned.
After you finish the loop, you should have found business English that is important for you, seen how it is used in many natural examples, and learned how to use it on your own in real-life situations.
Not only will you learn a lot, that learning will be much more memorable! Just be sure to review every once in a while!
Focus on the learning loop while trying to improve your business English, and you should be happy with the results!
It’s important to keep in mind that business culture is different even within the English speaking countries. Try to ‘live’ in that country online, or think about spending a few weeks in a specific country to learn more about what it means to be a professional.