Communications Skills by bvm20830


Training and Preparing for a
Globalised World

             Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007
My Background

 Masters in Corporate and Institutional
  Communication Management, MSC in
  Socioeconomics, BA in sociology
 Work experience initially in accounting
  and finance with a stint in HR
 20 years + in communications training
  (25 years ago NVC and
  Communications programme in
  Winterthur Seguros)
              Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007
Subject Background

 1997:David Crystal “in 75% of
  international business English, no L1
  speaker is involved”
 Skills for Business English 3 – reflects
  this – in spite of/thanks to editors 
 Reading University study: L2
  speakers often respond better than L1
 2007: estimates of 85-90 %
              Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007
Current Situation

 Barcelona
 Private university with an international
  student base
 Students are C1/2; ALTE 2/3 +

 Courses in Writing and Oral
  Communication Skills

              Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007
Writing Communication Skills

 FOCUS: communication in the business
 AIMS: to develop communication skills
  needed by those preparing for a business
  or management position.
 theory of business communication
 practical examples and assignments to
  improve the effectiveness of written
  communication skills.
               Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007
Oral Communication Skills
   OBJECTIVE: to enable students to understand,
    improve and develop their oral communication skills
    within a business context
   CONTENT: theoretical approaches to communication in
    the business environment AND fundamental skills of
    communicating within the workplace ie. the skills
    necessary for business executives.
    - different types of presentations,
    - organizing and running meetings
    - interviewing

                    Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007
In Brief

 Empowerment

 Critical

 Knowledgement

             Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007

1.   Business English – production of
     functional messages (NORMAL
2.   Business Communication – theory
     and critical analysis, but little
3.   Business Communication with
     analysis and production
               Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007

 Students understand what is most
  suitable depending on the
  circumstances and the audience
 Students feel empowered to produce
  good texts
 Student feel empowered to „pass on
  the message‟

             Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007
The principles „taught‟ are
based on
 Communication research
 Public relations and communication
 Business knowledge (especially

             Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007

 CCC      Clear, Complete, Cordial
 MAPS     Message, Audience,
  Purpose, Scope
 Neutral/ Good News first
 Resale: include whenever appropriate
 Begin/end on a neutral/positive note
  ie: Never end/ on a negative note (so,
  no repeated apologies!)

              Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007
Cultural Aspects: key
 High v Low context
 Neutral v Affective

 Direct v Indirect

                       And of course …
-   Language: vocabulary and sentence
-   Pronunciation/punctuation/spelling

               Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007

Is there a difference between message
  and purpose?
Who is your audience – what do they
  want to hear/know and how much can
  you tell them?

             Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007

   WRITTEN                                ORAL
   Layout                                 Clear slides(1x1, 3s,
   White space                             7x7)
   Organization                           Pace, breathing
   Grammar                                Techniques – anchors:
   Vocabulary                              repetition, rhetorical
                                            Qs, 3s etc
   Tone
                                           Body language: open
                                            stance; „steepling‟

                   Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007

   Variety of tasks (individual, team, pairs)
   Doing and commenting (approach to giving
    feedback is crucial)
   Confidence building (tasks in which content
    is not a challenge)
   Observation ( of other students and Ted
   Self-observation

                 Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007
Writing. Case Study

 Chemical Plant in Monterrey, Mexico
  (set up 10 years ago)
 Government inspectors say they‟ve
  found contamination in the
  groundwater and accuses the
  company (HQ in Solingen, Germany)
 E-mail to Mexican plant manager

 E-mail to CEO

             Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007
Critical analysis: Planning

 Situation> MAPS
 Brainstorm: content, structure,
 DO

 Compare (now on a wiki!!)

              Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007

 Task 1. Evaluate …
 Situation:

 Here is a text written by a student

 Evaluate the effectiveness of the

              Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007
                  Dear Mr. Montero 1
Dear Jose,
Thank you so much for providing us with this information promptly and efficiently. At this
the moment in Germany we are preparing for a meeting to discuss this matter thoroughly
with the CEO. We understand the situation requires immediate attention and we will work
precisely and consistently until the issue has been solved. We are here to help you through
every step of the process. First and foremost (why put ‘and foremost’ here?? – this is an e-
mail..) we will be hiring professional inspectors to test for pollution and get to the source of
the problem at our plants (singular or plural?) in Mexico. After our meeting, which is being
held here momentarily (what does this mean? Very confusing, given the information in line
2) I will e-mail you and let you know the precise time the inspectors will be coming and their
contact information. (Hopefully you will also be giving Jose full instructions on how to
proceed until the inspectors arrive) Again, your immediate attention to this matter is much
appreciated and together we will solve the problem. I will be in touch with you by 1.30 pm
Germany ? time.
Sincerely ?? – this is an e-mail
Lauren B

Friendly, helpful approach; Paragraphs would make the e-m clearer
Missing information – give Montero something to do. He is probably feeling cornered!

                                            Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007
Dear Jose Montero,
Firstly, I must thank you the quickness with in which you’ve reported the problem. This
    These are difficult moments for the company and you’ve than done a great job.
I would like you to send me all the information on this case and explain how would you
act as you know better what’s the situation. (be careful of formatting)
Today there’s a meeting at 4 o’clock to try and solve the problem and I’ve also created a
crisis committee.
Try to send the information (what information? )regarded before the meeting. NOT clear
Feel free to make illegal suggestions so no one knows about it. NOT ethical !
Make no comments to the press or just say we are investigating. NOT clear
Tomorrow there’s another meeting also at 4 o’clock, hope we can communicate via
I am waiting for your suggestions.
Clear       C         Complete D          Cordial             C-

The email is not well formatted, the ideas/instructions feel disjointed and there is a
   lot of information missing. This makes the requests unclear. If I were Montero
   I am not sure if I would know what to do. The advice to go ‘illegal’ is not
   acceptable – and put in writing is dangerous!

                                           Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007
A look at their latest mid-
term exam
   3 parts

 Theory
 Critical analysis

 Practice

               Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007
Sample Theory Questions

   „It is important to avoid negative
    words in business writing‟ Comment
   What factors help make a text clear?
   What is the purpose of „resale‟ ?
   Outline arguments supporting the
    theory “Always present the good
    news first”.
   What does the acronym MAPS
    stand for? How does the „A‟ factor
    impact on writing?
              Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007
          Critique and Rewrite
Dear Ms Daniels
Thank you for your letter. We are very sorry to hear that our
products have failed to live up to your expectations. You made
a mistake: the product was not suitable for bathrooms. These
shade fade in humid conditions. Although it is your fault, you
are a very loyal customer so we are going to give you back
your money. Please send us you bank account details so that
we can do this. Once again, we are sorry that you had this
negative experience and hope this will not happen again in the
Best regards

                           Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007
Dear Mr Carter
We regret to inform you that we cannot grant your
request for a donation to the non-government
organisation you represent. We receive many requests
for contributions of all sorts as you can probably
imagine, far too many. We have found it necessary to
allot an allocation annually for such purposes. Our
budget for this year has been allocated. Unfortunately
you sent your request too late. However, if you wish
we can consider your request for next year. We deeply
regret once again that we cannot help you and we
trust you will understand our position.
Sincerely Yours

                         Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007
Dear Mr Towers
We have received your May 3 order and request for credit.
After carefully examining your request and the financial
documents you attached, we regret to report that you do not
meet our company‟s requirements for credit. Our policy is that
firms with weak assets-to-liabilities ratios would be better off
paying in cash.
This is your situation and we therefore encourage you to do this.
Obviously we would, of course, be pleased to serve you on a
cash basis. In fact your order can be processed immediately and
can leave the factory within a week.
Please confirm what you would like to do. I assure you that we
really do regret very sincerely that we have had to deny you
credit on this occasion.
Bruce Jones

                              Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007
Any Questions?

   Thanks and Haere Rai

              Anne Dwyer. BESIG 2007

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