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  • Hi, everyone. I'm Jade. What we're talking about today is mixing business with pleasure.

  • So what does this mean? This can mean when you go for a business trip, you also have

  • a little bit of fun while you're there. But it can also mean that when you go out with

  • your clients, it's not all talk about work, work, work, business, business, business.

  • You also get to know each other a bit, maybe have a few glasses of wine or something like

  • that. I don't know what you do on your business trips. But it's not just about work. So I'm

  • going to give you some conversational tips for your next business trip where you may

  • decide to mix business with pleasure.

  • So I've broken it down into different conversation topics. So we'll just go through those, and

  • you will get some questions that you can ask to make yourself a dazzling conversationalist

  • when you're next with your clients.

  • So I was thinking: When do these kinds of business meetings happen? Often, they are

  • in restaurants. So it could be the evening. It could be a lunch meeting. So anyway, you're

  • in a dining situation. You get in the restaurant. What do you say? You can say, "Have you been

  • here before?" Or you might say, "What an impressive/charming/fascinating place!" This one's an exclamation. You're

  • making an observation about the place. If it's impressive, I would imagine that it's

  • quite a fine dining, expensive kind of place. If it's charming, it's original, and you've

  • not really been somewhere like that before. If it's fascinating, what could that mean?

  • Just maybe something unusual for you that you haven't experienced before.

  • If you're the host, and you are taking your client to that place, maybe you want to say

  • something about the place, and the reason why you decided to have your meeting there.

  • You could say, "This is the best seafood restaurant in town." So you're trying to impress your

  • client and show them that you're taking them to all the best places. So you could change

  • seafood. It could be a Chinese restaurant --you know, whatever, wherever you're going.

  • So imagine you are in the restaurant situation. A really common conversation for you to have

  • is talking about food in general, your likes and dislikes, and also making comparisons

  • between countries and cuisine styles from different countries. So here are some questions

  • you might ask. You can say, "Do you like English food?" Well, the joke there is that people

  • around the world say that they don't like English food and it's really bad. So I wouldn't

  • be that hopeful for a very positive answer if you ask that question.

  • When you're looking at the menu, especially if the menu is in a language that you don't

  • understand, you could say, "Could you recommend something?" Often it's quite polite -- at

  • least in British culture -- to let the host decide what you're eating. So you might want

  • to make that offer and say, "Can you recommend something?" You can also ask this to the waiter

  • in the restaurant, as well, if you really don't know what to choose.

  • And here's another general question you could ask about food. So let's imagine your client

  • is from a different country and you don't know much about the food culture of that country,

  • you could say, "What do Italian people like to eat for breakfast?" You know, you might

  • not know. This could start a conversation about food. Or, you know, it doesn't need

  • to be a specific meal. It could be a particular celebration that you could talk about. Perhaps

  • it's near Christmas -- it's in the run-up to Christmas. You could say, "What do Italian

  • people eat for Christmas dinner? In Britain, we like to eat something called a 'roast dinner',

  • but what do you eat?" So that could get your conversation flowing a bit.

  • I must say that in my life, I've never had that many conversations about sports. It's

  • not in my world, talking about sports. But I know two general questions you could ask.

  • "Do you follow any sports?" This means, "Do you watch them on television?" Or you could

  • say, "Do you play any sports yourself?"

  • So now, you've been talking about sports. Perhaps you've discovered that you share a

  • common interest. That means that you're both interested in the same thing. So you could

  • both be interested in football, for example. Here's a question for you. "What did you think

  • about the latest signing at Manchester United?" I know this about football and sport, when

  • they get a new player, it's called a "signing". So you could bring that into your conversation.

  • "What did you think of the latest signing?" Talking about football.

  • But perhaps you're a music fan. What would you say in that case? You've discovered that

  • you both really like a particular music artist. You could say, "What did you think about the

  • new album?" I found a mistake.

  • And you could -- what if you're a fashion lover? A fashion lover, Darling! You could

  • say, "Did you like the new collection?" "Collection" is the word we use to talk about a designer's

  • designs for that year. So you could say, "Did you like the new collection?"

  • What other topics do we have now? We've got travel. This one is especially relevant if

  • you've traveled to meet your client in a new place. Here are some general questions you

  • could ask. "Have you visited the U.K.?" You know, just replace that for your own country,

  • and that will get you talking. Or you could say, "Do you travel much?" And then, start

  • talking generally about travel.

  • What about family? Perhaps you'd like to know a little bit more about the personal life

  • of your client. You could say, "Are you married?" You could say, "Do you have kids?" This one

  • feels a little bit more personal than the other topics, so you'd have to be the judge

  • if you wanted to talk about that.

  • You may also wish to talk about news and politics. In dinner party situations in Britain, it's

  • said that it's impolite to -- no, not impolite. That it may not be a good idea to talk about

  • politics or religion because people disagree, and it can get people arguing. So sometimes,

  • politics may be a risky subject for you. But use your discretion here.

  • Let's look at this. "Are you feeling the pinch?" A "pinch" is when you do this to your skin.

  • But that's a phrase economically for, "Are you feeling the difficult times financially?"

  • Or you might say, "What do you think the outcome of the election will be?" Perhaps you've got

  • a political event coming up in your country or in the other person's country or more generally,

  • like in the U.S. and you could just maybe start talking about that.

  • And moving on. Once you've had a delightful discussion about all different things -- travel,

  • family, your likes and dislikes -- now, it's time to get down to business. What does it

  • mean to "get down to business"? I don't think you should shout it, actually. "Let's get

  • down to business!" I don't think you should shout it. But you know, at some point during

  • your business meeting, discussion, maybe you do need to talk about the details or your

  • proposal or the offer. So that's a good way to transition it to finally talking about

  • the whole reason that you came there for. Maybe you say this at the end of the meal,

  • for dessert. Another transition you can use is "on that note". Perhaps you were talking

  • about this. Maybe you're talking about the economy, and then you could say, "On that

  • note, have you considered our offer?" That means, "Let's talk now and discuss the details

  • of my proposal."

  • Here's one -- these ones are a little bit more fun. I've heard them said in movies.

  • I don't know if people actually use them. But you could say this. "Look. Let's not beat

  • around the bush. It's time to sign the contract now." This means, "I'm just going to be very

  • direct with you. I'm going to be very straight. I'm going to cut all that small talk. I don't

  • care about your wife and kids. It's time to do business."

  • If you want to get to that part where you finally strike a deal, you can say this, "So

  • do we have a deal?" You can shake their hand? And you can say -- when they're happy, you

  • can say, "Let's shake on it."

  • So this can prepare you for that client meeting, that social client meeting, mixing business

  • with pleasure. It could be in a restaurant. It could be playing golf. It could be something

  • like that. It could be in a karaoke bar. I don't know.

  • Well, what I'd like you to do now is go to www.engvid.com so you can do a quiz on this

  • lesson. Plus, I'd like you to subscribe to my channel here. And also, I'd also like you

  • to subscribe to my personal channel because I've got two channels. So you need to subscribe

  • in both places, really. Yeah. That would be great for me. And I hope you come back and

  • watch me again soon here, on my EngVid channel. So I'll see you later. And now, I'm going

  • to catch up with my clients. See you.

Hi, everyone. I'm Jade. What we're talking about today is mixing business with pleasure.

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Business English: Mixing Business with Pleasure!

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    Bono Chen posted on 2014/05/28
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