Business English What Skills, Functions Essay

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Business English

What skills, functions and particular language features would be required for the following?

Video Conferencing -- Video conferencing is a technological tool in which two or more locations are able to interact via video and audio simultaneously. It is designed as a way to hold meetings with people in multiple locations (even globally) to cut down on travel expenses, allow for more productive collaboration from a variety of people, provide real-time needed interaction and to provide a way to interact in business, personal life or education with individuals in a variety of geographic areas.

There are a number of language considerations when utilizing video-conferencing:

Body language -- facial expression and Body language are intricate parts of human communication; these are available more so on video conferencing, meaning one needs to be cautious about messages.

Video-Conferencing impacts language learning, and may require that a second language, or even third, be mastered in order to adequately communicate with those in other areas.

Video-Conferencing allows for the deaf to participate in conversations easier.

With training, meeting anxiety, testimony, and even providing information to technical personnel reduced down time significantly.

The use of video conferencing on a PC (e.g. cam to cam) requires that one be organized, but able to perform impromptu in business, much as if one were popping in to another person's cubicle (Davis and Weinstein, 2005).Buy full Download Microsoft Word File paper
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Essay on Business English What Skills, Functions and Particular Assignment

If videoconferencing is to be effective within the workplace, the participants must have training in the use of precise terminology to get their point across, to use concise language that is well-organized, free of colloquialisms, and to treat the venue just as one would if one were giving a presentation to a larger group. This is particularly important when realizing that English may not be the first language of many of the speakers. Speak clearly, do not mumble, do not hide behind a microphone or prop, but instead, look directly into the camber and, if at all possible, pretend that the person(s) in the same room so that you can be clear and precise. If possible, mimic your verbal presentation with graphics to accentuate your points (Wilcox, 2000).

Texting - Texting, or text messaging, is a modern colloquial term that refers to the exchange of information between mobile devices, made possible by transmitting messages through cellular networks. Typically, these types of messages are sent using a Short Message Service (SMS), but with the advances in cellular technology and memory, a new Multimedia Message Service (MMS) made it possible to send messages containing images, video, and sound (Baron 2008).

Typically, texting is done as a quick, private, person-to-person messaging system. Of course, advertisers have acknowledged the power, and it is not used to interact with automated systems, order products and services, participate in contests, and interact with online activities (e.g. American Idol, etc.). Texting systems can also advise customers of billing dude dates, promotions, and other messages more easily converted to text than left as voice mail (Trosby 2004). Services also exist that take voice mail and translate it into text, allowing for quicker attention and privacy (e.g. Surprisingly enough, texting is relatively new to the mobile market; it is less than 10 years old as a standard application, considering the popularity and usage within the contemporary mobile market (Ibid.).

Texting is used as a substitute for voice calls, often in situations where voice is impossible or unwise. Users do not need to place the phone near the ear as they would using voice mail, and due to the smaller sizes of texting phones and PDA's, retrieving text messages and/or participating in a text conversation can be far quicker and more private even than voice. In business, texting is usually a distraction except in certain situations. For example if one is in a meeting and needs a piece of information from a colleague, a quick text can provide that without impacting the meeting. When using text, however, one needs to be brief, to the point, and often in the modern world texting has its own language, which remains controversial. In addition, texting is helpful in business in delivering financial information, stocks, commodities, etc. (Crystal 2009).

SMS/Instant Messaging/Chat Software -- Instant messaging and SMS are typically part of a mobile smartphone application and, for business English and business use, follow some of the same functions as texting. However, IM's (Instant messaging) or chat software, is now very commonly available through most mail providers (AOL, Google, Microsoft, Yahoo, etc.) so that a message or conversation may "pop-up" during any activity and during the course of the work day. Of course, this is both efficient and distracting -- as with most tools, it depends on the use. One of the larger trends brought about by the use of the Internet is the virtual community -- a social network of individuals who interact with each other without the constraints of geography, time zones, political or economic situations, weather, or demography -- all that matters is that they are able to come together to form a culture in which they share mutual interests or values. Typically this type of culture occurs through social networking and online communities, both of which have provided the "tipping point" and changed the world as evidenced in the 2008 American presidential election. The extreme power of this new cultural tool is the very nature -- it depends on nothing but an electronic connection. it, like many things in the modern world, is instantaneous, satisfying the 21st century need to have both dependence and independence based on our own decision or whim. Therein lies the confusion for many -- just how real is an electronic friendship that can exist without really "knowing" the person physically? How robust are virtual relationships except in the mind of those participating? and, how do we know with whom we are actually chatting or forming a bond -- could the mother of three living in Scotland be something quite different on the Internet? (Haythornthwaite, 2005).

Yet in business, this could also be a powerful tool to again, allow for quick jots of information between colleagues. In this case, short, succinct phrases/sentences would be ideal to enhance communications. One will also need to decide if one is going to adopt the shorthand English, or retain business English in communicating through text and/or instant messaging. There are both positives and negatives to both -- and it depends if one is able to switch gears and understand that there are certain times that it is appropriate to use non-standard English, and other times that it is crucial in the business world to use precise, formal, business English (Jaderstrom and Miller, 2006).

EMAILS- Email, or electronic mail, has become such a part of everyday business life that it is almost impossible to conceive of business without the ability to communicate quickly and cheaply throughout the organization. Often times, business requires communication, review of documents, etc. between individuals that are not in the same location. At times, busy schedules prevent conference calls, or even phone calls, but emails can be easily answered data transferred and a more efficient environment engendered. However, sometimes email allows for loss of context -- email may be misunderstood, there may be multiple meanings, and the information overload and inconsistency of email may result in difficulties in communication. Often, to overcome this limitation, email users have invented a series of shortcuts that add emotion, smiles, grins, etc., phrases (LOL, ROFL, u2, etc.) not just for shorthand but to allow for a more personalized email experience.

The key to using appropriate English, or communication, in email is to work so that tone and timbre are kept at a relatively neutral level; it is easy to misinterpret intent and tone. Email has literally changed the way business works, but it is important to note that because it can be archived, read by others, and is potentially not neutral; more care may be given to it as a tool in order to assist in productivity, not hinder. Indeed, most current estimates show that for every 8-hour managerial shift and above, 2 hours is taken up just getting through email (Smallwood, 2008).

Email has made it possible for business communication to flow easier and to have more communication per day. This is especially true in the new business sales culture, in which sales, by its very nature, is almost always based on instant actions, hitting send, and then living with the results. The moral of this is that with email, it is important not to use a "stream of consciousness" form of business English. Rather, one needs to realize, the 5-paragraph theme rule still applies: topic -- back up sentences (paragraphs) and robust conclusion. Just because it is email does not mean it should deteriorate into conversational slang, poor spelling, and lack of professional tone and timbre (Schiffman, 2007, Chapter 2).

How important are these techniques in contemporary business? Each of these new, electronic, communication devices and techniques has a particular place in modern… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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