How to Communicate Better at Work

The Importance of Interaction and Integration

Here at EnglishLogica, we are concerned with helping you improve your spoken English. A lot of non-native speakers of English stop learning once they pass their exams, and many continue to make the same mistakes they picked up during their time spent learning. If you think this might describe you, then you might think that a lot of your bad habits in English have gone unnoticed. Unfortunately, this is not true. Others have noticed. What you must remember is that many native English speakers will not correct you, mainly for fear of insulting you or making you feel uncomfortable. It might even make them feel uncomfortable. Many non-native speakers have difficulty making friends with English-speaking colleagues or others around them. Because of this, their social circles remain small, and a lot of people who have left home to live in a new country surround themselves with others of their own culture or language. This is detrimental to your ongoing language education.

A Dynamic and Trustworthy Database of Expressions

For those of you intending to stay in your new home and to develop in your chosen career, it is hugely important that you continue to expand your knowledge of English, and to make every effort possible to integrate with your English-speaking colleagues and friends. No matter where you live, you will hear words, phrases, and expressions that you never heard before. They certainly wouldn't have been included in your examination material! Our Expressions Database is an ever-growing dictionary with a specific focus, expanding as our contributors from English speaking countries around the world continue to add their unique understanding of these words and expressions, as well as helping you appreciate the wide variety of uses for words you might otherwise see as very basic. Let me give you an example:

I'm sure you know what the word 'working' means. However, our approach to these kind of words is to see them as 'core' words with commonly associated words. By doing this, we can suggest ways that you can easily remember more than one way to use these words. So, you could remember the word 'working' in contexts like 'working session' or 'working relationship' or even 'working 9 to 5'. This technique will lead to your brain firing suggestions at you whenever the correct context arises, and you will feel more confident using an ever-widening vocabulary of expressions and phrases.

A Vocabulary for Your Career

When it comes to the workplace, you will hear many expressions that are primarily suited to a working environment. Just like in an academic setting, where people use terminology they wouldn't use in everyday speech, the workplace is full of language that is rarely used elsewhere. This workplace language is one of your most valuable commodities if you are hoping to integrate and succeed in your chosen career. We suggested above that native English speakers will not correct you if you make mistakes. In the workplace, this is because your linguistic abilities are considered a skill, just like any other skill. It is your responsibility to develop your skills, and your employer will recognise those who have made the effort to do so.

A lot of hiring decisions are based on how well your potential employer imagines you integrating with the team. If a significant language barrier is perceived, it is likely you won't get the job, as this will have an effect on productivity and - depending on your role - client and consumer confidence. Apart from this, employee morale is invariably boosted through interaction and communication with colleagues and management alike. The social aspect of working in English-speaking countries is central to creating a happy and productive work environment, and many corporations are promoting collaborative workspaces where staff can voice their opinions and make suggestions. Even your Manager is likely to be subject to these dynamic decision-making processes, as he or she ultimately answers to someone else. With progressive labour laws and the freedom to join workers' unions, it has become the norm for employees to feel that their voice is as important as anyone else's.

Start Connecting

So, don't shy away from social gatherings, whether it's just a few colleagues going out for lunch, or dinner or a few drinks after work. This interaction will develop your communication skills, in much the same way as you would build up your muscles in a gym. Your brain will hear the same phrases and words, expressions and idioms, over and over again, and the context will help you understand what they mean. But again, don't be shy...ask what they mean! Native English speakers will be happy to tell you, and this interaction will strengthen your connection with your colleagues. Start using these new expressions, and even ask in a light-hearted way if you're using them correctly. From all of this, you will find that your workday is more enjoyable, and - believe it or not - this connection with those around you will increase your chances of succeeding in your job, and even moving up the company ladder. All of this applies to decisions around promotion and career development, and you can check out our page on How to Ask for a Promotion for some practical advice on this matter. If you are still seeking employment, our Interview Questions and Advice might be useful.

Remember, many learners of English are embarrassed to ask for help or to show that they don't understand something. But you are not alone. Let us know if you have heard of any expressions in your workplace that you would like explained. In an online environment, it is easy to be misled by people repeating the mistakes of others, or just copying what they heard or read somewhere else. Our highly qualified native English speaking staff ensure that our content is original and correct.

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