Category Archives: Language Learning Tips

Byte Sized language learning tricks and tips to try today, these are easy to do and should take no longer than 10 minutes max – unless you get carried away in a frenzy

Three Terrifically Simple Tactics to take the Terror out of Telephoning

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These days when you get a call, you can normally see at a glance either who is calling or at least whether the person is calling from outside your country. A country code different to your own, usually means that you will be expected to speak in English and that can really bring you out in a sweat can’t it? Continue reading Three Terrifically Simple Tactics to take the Terror out of Telephoning

Have you ever wondered if you are the only woman in tech…?

… to be frustrated and time robbed by typing, deleting, retyping, worrying about the word order and many more of these editing quandary’s?  Do you look up hoping that nobody can see how ridiculously long it is taking you to send this fundamentally short and simple English language email? Continue reading Have you ever wondered if you are the only woman in tech…?

Are you on speed?

I’m not sure about you, but when I am nervous or excited about something new, I tend to speak really fast? I have to confess, that I do this both in my own native tongue – English but also in German and Finnish.

So what’s so bad about speaking fast? Surely that’s good isn’t it? Well, if you are comfortable with a language (take your own language as an example), speaking fast could be a reliable indicator of fluency. However the chances are that in a foreign language, the faster you speak, the more mistakes you’ll be making, simply because fast talking requires fast thinking. If you are having to think faster- that puts you under even more pressure so slowing down, gives you a chance to be calmer and to speak more smoothly.

Easier said than done! I know.

In addition, speaking fast gives off “false fluency” messages and those – let me assure you – can land you in extremely deep water! If you speak fast people will assume that you are a really confident speaker of English and be less thoughtful in terms of speaking more slowly and clearly than they would normally. As a result, you’ll find that they tend to talk faster too, it’s not a deliberate tactic, it’s kind of infectious. So do yourself a favour and

T A K E Y O U R T I M E.

Speaking slowly makes you:

easier to understand
more confident and hence credible and
more accurate in terms of grammar and your clever selection of vocabulary.

That little bit of time makes a huge difference!

If you need to practice for a technical briefing or presentation, then think about the speed and if you are already a member, drop in to the closed group and run it past us in either audio or video format. That might sound scary but, it’s better to get it right in front of us than winging it.

We’ll give you constructive feedback as a group so that you can go in there with your head held high. Remember, you might want to remove the name of the client or other details like product names, but remember, we have all signed confidentiality agreements prior to getting access to the group too.

So are you on speed?
Pop into our closed facebook group to share your “fast talking stories”

90% of German women make this English mistake

In the world of work, one of the first things that we get asked about, regardless of gender, age or cultural background is our careers. For those of us with a family, that normally involves explaining a career break when we left work to go and have a baby. Depending on where you live you’ll have been out of action for anything from a couple of days ‘start up babes and self employed tech gurus’ to up to three years, even longer f you had two or more children back to back.

So please ladies, please…ladies ….do me a favour – no wait – DO YOURSELF A FAVOUR and don’t make this mistake

“I became a baby.”

You see you might become lots of things when you get pregnant,
but you don’t become a baby.

Grammatical Explanation
If you become something, then you have changed from being one thing to another, so you might become a mother, or become the boss, or become bored with your job but by saying that you ‘became a baby’, you are saying that you went from being an adult – a fully functioning part of the team to a baby.

You are actually saying that you went from being an adult to being a baby. NOT Good.
Now, I’m not a raging feminist,  but is this really the impression we want to make girls?

So get it right, you must say “I had a baby and when I came back I ….” you didn’t become anything different although you might have developed new skills “I became more patient”.

Ideally to make a professional and authentic impression say,

“I went on maternity leave”.
Go on, say it ten times.

“I went on maternity leave”.
“I went on maternity …”.
“I went on mat…”.
“I went on …”. (pay attention to the preposition here ladies!
“I went …”.
“I …”.

Thank you.
Why not leave me a comment, telling me what you did after your maternity leave.
Typing it and saying it will fix it in your brain!