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[ESL/EFL] Informal Business English: Staying in Touch
Eleventh in a series of English language lessons from Jennifer Lebedev
Jennifer Lebedev (jenesl)     Print Article 
  Published 2008-09-03 10:54 (KST)   
Expression No. 1: Give Me a Ring

In standard English, you can say: "Call me later." But if you're speaking to a friend or close colleague, you can also say: "Give me a ring." Another variation you may hear is: "Give me a buzz."

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Of course, our cell phones only buzz when they're on silent mode, and they hardly ever ring because we usually choose a catchy tune from the hundreds of downloadable ringtones. Nevertheless, Give Me a Ring and Give Me a Buzz continue to be used in everyday English.

Expression No. 2: Text Me

Phones these days aren't just for conversations. We can check e-mail, take photos, watch videos and text message. Plenty of communication in the business world is done in writing, and if the nature of the information is informal, a text message via our cell phone can be a convenient way to convey it. Text Me is a quick way to ask someone to send you a text message. For example: "Hey, can you text me the address of the restaurant we're meeting at for lunch?"

Expression No. 3: Shoot Me an E-mail

In the world of business, time is money, and the pace of activity can be very fast. E-mail is certainly faster than snail mail (the regular mail service), so it's easy to understand how Shoot Me an E-mail came to mean "Send me an e-mail message." As fast as a speeding bullet, e-mail can send information from one businessperson to another.

Expression No. 4: Touch Base

People conducting business together must remain in contact. To Touch Base means to contact one another so that everyone can have the same information. If necessary, one person can update another. For example: "Let me make a few phone calls and find out more. We can touch base early next week, OK?"

Expression No. 5: Keep Me in the Loop

This expression is related to the previous one. Touch Base is actually making contact via phone, e-mail, etc. But when you ask people to Keep You in the Loop, you're simply asking them to keep you informed and not forget to pass along new developments.

Expression No. 6: Talk Shop

Sometimes colleagues get in touch simply to enjoy one another's company and not to conduct business. It's perfectly natural for one businessperson to suggest to another during a lunch break: "Let's not talk shop." This is a request not to discuss things related to work.

Of course, it's also possible for two colleagues to have few common interests outside work, so all they may do is Talk Shop.


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- [ESL/EFL podcast] Informal Business English: Staying in Touch 

©2008 OhmyNews
Jennifer Lebedev is a teacher of English as a second and foreign language with 12 years experience. She has additional experience in teacher training and administration of an IEP and is a published author. Find more of her online English instruction on YouTube under the name "JenniferESL".
Other articles by reporter Jennifer Lebedev

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