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used to prepare students for the module Learning English Through . Proofread all your work carefully for spelling, punctuation, grammatical and typographical. After listening to Using English at Work, you will be better able to speak and write business English. Get it right with this complete course in daily English for. communication, in work contexts like the scenarios described above. . through English has become a much more common practice than in the http://www. pdf.

What if staff-exchange causes partners to inter-penetrate, as became gradually the case at Globum? Such questions are addressed in the following of this study.

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Globum is perceived to be much anglicized by French standards. It has been repeatedly singled out by the French press and administration for its English language policy, being one of a few French companies that require all candidates for an executive position to pass an eliminatory standardized English test.

In spite of that, Globum seems a rather modest English language user compared to other, especially northern European MNCs. French remains the working language for a large majority of staff in France, including at the headquarters. The percentage of meetings in English was similar for managers and non-managers, which perhaps goes to show the diffuse nature of the language issue in the company.

We followed an ethnographically-inspired methodology, gathering mostly spoken material through thematic interviews, meetings observation and informal discussions. Our first-level contact was a senior manager who got interested in our research topic. He drew our attention on a multifunctional project team composed of thirty-some French and one recently arrived non-French-speaking Korean employee, Mr.

Lee a pseudonym. Following his advice, we decided to focus on that team. It seemed interesting and rather novel to study not the working of a multinational team, as is so often the case in intercultural or international management studies and as we also had in mind initially , but a national-culturally homogeneous group and its reaction to the introduction of a foreign element. We were allowed to attend three project team meetings and took notes we could not get permission to make recordings.

After each meeting, we discussed salient points with voluntary participants. A successive stage of the fieldwork consisted in identifying informants to interview, for which purpose we made use of a snowballing technique Patton We contacted these people, all of whom agreed to be interviewed and suggested more names. Most informants were happy to answer our questions and, more than that, to see that someone cared about language issues which seemed real to them, although ignored by the top management.

The interviews, which constitute by far the biggest part of the data, lasted between sixty and ninety minutes. They took the form of a dialogue between the researcher and the informants, in the course of which following themes were systematically addressed: language skills; professional language use; language- related difficulties encountered at work; preferences regarding language use; language training; translation.

Informants were encouraged to forget the questionnaire that had been sent to them in advance for preparation few of them actually prepared for the interview and favor descriptions and anecdotes. In some cases we asked informants to explain, or account for events that we had observed in meetings. In some of the last interviews, we asked informants to react to pieces of information provided by one of their unnamed colleagues or challenged what they had just said on the basis of previously gathered information.

This kind of cross-examining or triangulation is likely to increase data density and reliability Mills , 52; Yin All quotes are excerpted from verbatim interview transcriptions and translated from French to English — except for Mr. Lee, who was interviewed in English. We provide the French version when the translation does not fully render the original quote.

Contextual comments are provided where necessary.

Findings Mr. Product conception and fabrication, which were dealt with separately so far, should be more and more integrated in the near future.

Staff exchange is a conscious part of the scheme: it allows strengthening inter-partner relationships and transfer knowledge and experience from France to Korea and vice versa.

In addition to the knowledge and experience that he is expected to bring back to Korea after a two or three- year French assignment, Mr. The rationale for his arrival is well understood by team members and no informant attempted to call it into question.

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What was not anticipated by human resources, management and even team members is the massive language-related impact of the assignment on teamwork. Lee was encouraged to take French lessons. That is the tip of the iceberg. But the hidden part of it — how thirty-some French team members would deal with the imposed foreign working language — was totally ignored.

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Team members did not themselves perceive teamwork anglicization as a problem until it had happened. This is entirely consistent with previous findings on the ever unforeseen linguistic consequences of organizational change Marschan-Piekkari, Welch, et Welch a; Piekkari et al.

Presentation material had been written in English for some time, causing no big change. In fact, until Mr. On the other hand, several of them deemed their spoken English skills barely sufficient or insufficient for their current position, even though some had scored an excellent note at the eliminatory English test passed at entry, which focuses on passive reading, hearing and grammatical skills.

All of them report spending more time on the preparation of their presentations, which, interestingly, seems a good thing to most as it obliges them to clarify their ideas for themselves before translating them into English and passing them on to their colleagues. This positive side effect of anglicization has, to our knowledge, seldom been mentioned in literature. However, as has repeatedly been observed, the use of a foreign language restricts the spectrum of their communicative capacity, making them lose in fluency and accuracy: they search for their words, use circumlocutions, sometimes give up expressing an idea because of lacking vocabulary, drop words in French when they do not come in English… The fact that all meeting attendees are non-native English speakers, and all but one are native French speakers, is an important element of context: instead of a binary opposition between native and non-native speakers, one has a continuum of proficiency levels.

Lee is rather at the top of the ladder, as is M. Dupont, the project leader. At least, this is my interpretation. Although informants are conscious that accent and grammar do not matter as long as they do not hinder communication, they seem unable to steer away from criteria according to which they were judged as students.

Several interviewees blame the French education system for emphasizing formal linguistic correction at the expense of successful communication. It is also pointed out by foreigners working in France interviewed outside the scope of this study that French employees are inordinately inhibited towards language.

This is where working in a foreign language proves most limiting.

Korean Word Structure and Basic Letters

Debates are a crucial element in a French meeting, giving participants the opportunity to confront their views and reach a rational agreement — contrary to a German or Japanese meeting, sometimes described as a mere validating structure for decisions made upstream Hall et Hall Following Mr. A guy from procurement could challenge [challenger] me [a quality engineer]… Now in English he would think twice before doing that! It is necessary to the extent that Mr. Lee does not speak French and could not take part in teamwork if the working language was not English.

English, in this respect, is a neutral ground for communication between non-native English speakers. But English is also, undoubtedly, an obstacle or a constraint for every team member — including Mr.

Lee — who would prefer to work in their mother tongues. All in all, he is convinced that English makes the team lose efficiency. Better preparation and task-orientedness are probably not enough to counterbalance losses of precision, comprehension and hence, time, brought about by a foreign language.

A more positive statement on this point would require denser, preferably quantitative data, and an objective definition of efficiency, other than: what interviewees deem to be efficient.

But efficient or not, the fact is that English is imposed on the team not on a whim of one high-level manager, but as a consequence of an otherwise unassailable decision, namely, the assignment of a non-French-speaking employee to the project team. Speaking English is a matter of respect to the foreigner.

Team members who have experienced an international assignment readily step into Mr.

One who has been to Korea reports that English was never an issue for his Korean colleagues, contrary to what happens in France. It obliges people… I saw it, I worked with Koreans everyday for two years, it prompts people to make efforts.

We have to be up to it. That thirty people should give up a portion of their communicative capacity for one person to take part in the meeting seems absurd, especially if the foreigner is only marginally concerned by the topic in discussion.

What seems totally abnormal to me is that [we should speak English] when only one person speaks English and the other thirty speak French, this balance seems wrong to me. These tensions are made strikingly visible by switches from English to French and vice versa during meetings.

The call to order may come from the project leader, or from a more-proficient-than-average team member. Two informants report sometimes taking the initiative of calling the team to order; they also happen to be the best English-speakers in the sample.

Interestingly, Mr. Lee never takes the initiative himself. X for example does it often. Antoine [Dupont] will not highlight it, but sometimes in fact he will spontaneously resume in English. Once we observed that the conversation switched to French after about two hours and continued in French for the rest of the meeting, which lasted three quarters of an hour.

Lee left the meeting room discretely after a quarter of an hour. Many participants that were asked to analyze the incident had, interestingly, either not noticed or forgotten it.

Faced with the facts, they argue: 1 that Mr. Lee was not directly concerned by the last topic in discussion Mr. Lee confirms ; 2 that the meeting was running behind schedule and going on in English would have made it last forever. The fact that Mr. Lee stayed in the meeting room shows, however, that he thought or did not rule out that his colleagues would switch back to English.

Instead, a new rule was tacitly adopted: one does not have to speak English if Mr. Lee is not directly concerned and the meeting is behind schedule. Dupont did not call to order gave a signal that he accepted the new rule. Switches to French may be initiated by Mr.

Dupont himself, especially: when a presentation has not been very clear or satisfying and he wants the team to rework on it; when he feels that a debate needs to be straightened out and a clear position has to be taken by himself in the end; when one of his collaborators seems to have trouble understanding or participating in the discussion.

That is, he grants us that moment, I noticed, that moment that is like a relief valve, he lets go, everybody expresses themselves, and then, hop! He switches back to English. If you lead the meeting, you must set an example and be disciplined. Again, do whatever you can to memorize the English representations to help you learn them. In that picture, it should be clear that the ones on the left are drawn vertically, and the ones on the right are drawn horizontally.

The difference is very important because the way every Korean letter is written depends on if the vowel is drawn vertically or horizontally. One block always has exactly one syllable. Always always always always always. Blocks containing a horizontally drawn vowel are always drawn in one of these two ways: 4. Blocks containing a vertically drawn vowel are always drawn in one of these two ways: Now that you know those rules, it is just a matter of putting the consonants and vowels together to make blocks.

Use different vocabulary and examples if you can. This way, your co-workers will know not to interrupt you until your question, idea or explanation is finished. They will also know to give you an answer or response afterwards. Especially when you are still becoming comfortable using English around new people, this communication strategy is very helpful.

Similarly, be aware of your intonation when speaking. If you say something with no intonation—very flatly—your co-workers may think you are bored or uninterested. They may not know how to read your emotions and that can cause problems in the workplace. This will help you feel more comfortable speaking in English at work.

You will be able to think about how you want to phrase certain ideas in a non-stressful environment. When someone at work explains a new concept or task to you, ask them to demonstrate it if possible. For example, if they want you to use a new website, ask them to sit with you on the computer and use it together.

You could ask:.

Even if you understand all or most of what they are saying, seeing a new activity in action will help you remember the explanation later, and it will minimize confusion. You are not a robot. So let your co-workers and boss get to know your fabulous personality. You forget to make jokes. You forget to talk about things that make you happy. You forget to let others see your personality.Here, on the contrary, it is the unforeseen, undesirable consequence of a one-off HR decision, the assignment of a non-French-speaking collaborator to an unprepared team.

Listen to the story slow 2. You could ask: Could you show me how? Debates are a crucial element in a French meeting, giving participants the opportunity to confront their views and reach a rational agreement — contrary to a German or Japanese meeting, sometimes described as a mere validating structure for decisions made upstream Hall et Hall This way, your co-workers will know not to interrupt you until your question, idea or explanation is finished. It is necessary to the extent that Mr.

Presentation material had been written in English for some time, causing no big change. Efficient international operations management requires that information should be circulated easily throughout the organization, from headquarters to subsidiaries and vice versa, to which internal language barriers are an obstacle.