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B. Which of the words above have the following meanings?

1 concise

2 unable to speak

3 talking in a confused way

4 able to express ideas well

5 clear and easy to understand

6 good at influencing people

7 reacting in a positive way


C. Use a prefix to form the opposites of these words from Exercise A.

· articulate

· coherent

· focussed

· inhibited

D. Make nouns from the following adjectives, using endings from the box.

-ce -cy -ity -tion -ness  



coherent – ________________ eloquent – ________________ fluent – ________________ hesitant – ________________ inhibited – ________________ persuasive – ________________ responsive – ________________ sensitive – ________________ succinct – ________________ clear – ________________

E. Complete the sentences with the best word.

1 Good presenters rarely ramble. They usually try to be as …, as possible.

a) inarticulate b) hesitant c) succinct

2 Her arguments were so … that we all agreed to her proposal.

a) fluent b) extrovert c) persuasive

3 The audience were very … and carried him through his difficult presentation.

a) responsive b) eloquent c) coherent

4 She is a very … person. She always keeps her attention fixed on what she wants to achieve.

a) sensitive b) focused c) fluent

5 He never says what he thinks or shows what he feels. How can anybody be so …?

a) rambling b) fluent c) reserved

6 Everybody seems so … here. They behave and speak freely, and do not really care what other people think.

a) incoherent b) articulate c) uninhibited

7 We know that not all politicians are …. Some of them even use an autocue.

a) eloquent b) inhibited c) hesitant

F. Think of a good communicator you know. Explain why they are good at communicating.

G. Successful communication is of central importance in international business today but very often communication is difficult because people in different jobs and companies or from other countries, have different ways of looking at the world. People have different styles of communication. This activity encourages you to look at your own styles of communication and to find out about each other's. You are to complete a questionnaire about student B's styles of communication. Using the descriptions below the box, ask him/her how far he/she thinks he/she has e.g. (for number 3) a formal or an informal style of communication and then tick the right box.

Example: if student Β thinks he/she is very informal, you will tick box 3 or 4 on the informal side; if he/she thinks he/she is a little formal, you will tick box 1 or 2 on the formal side. Encourage him/her to think about examples of how he/she reacts in different situations. (Ask your partner) Where on the scale do you position yourself for each of the following statements?


4 3 2 1 0 1 2 3 4
Sensitive Safe
Systematic Organic
Formal Informal
Directive Participative
Dense language Simple language
Direct Indirect
Stressed Relaxed
Involved Detached


1. Sensitive: you prefer to get to know quite quickly about the personal details of people you meet

Safe: you prefer not to discuss personal details with people who you have just met

2. Systematic: you prefer a very structured approach to communication

Organic: you prefer communication to develop naturally without thinking too much about structure or time

3. Formal: you prefer a traditional approach to dress, clothing, language and posture

Informal: you prefer a more relaxed, familiar approach to dress, clothing, language and posture

4. Directive: you prefer to take the initiative in communication and have others follow your lead

Participative: you prefer to consult, listen and build up a consensus among participants

5. Dense language: you prefer to give information of a specialized kind as efficiently as possible

Simple language: you prefer to give information of a specialized kind in as accessible a way to all listeners as possible

6. Direct: you prefer business communication to be only about the business in hand

Indirect: you prefer, in business communication, to be able to spend time in social conversation and touch on other subjects not directly related to the business in hand

7. Stressed: you prefer to generate energy to indicate the urgency of a situation

Relaxed: you prefer to play down the impact of a situation, no matter how urgent

8. Involved: you prefer to show your emotional attachment to the issues under discussion

Detached: you prefer to separate your feelings from the issues under discussion


When you have both asked each other all the questions, compare and discuss your answers.


H. In the language of business idioms, metaphors are often used with reference to the domains of sport, war and gambling.


I’ve asked my boss for a pay rise several times,

but no luck. It’s like talking to a brick wall.

Let me put you in the picture.

Complete these idioms with the missing words from the box.

point bush grapevine stick wavelength wires nutshell

word picture tail purposes edgeways

a) to put it in a ______________

b) to get straight to the ______________

c) to hear it on the _______________

d) to put you in the _______________

e) to get the wrong end of the ________________

f) to have a quick ________________

g) to be on the same _________________

h) can't make head or ______________ of it _______________

i) to talk at cross _________________

j) to get a word in _____________

k) to beat about the ________________

l) to get our ______________ crossed


I. Which of the idioms in Exercise H mean the following?

1) to fail to understand anything

2) to share similar opinions and ideas

3) to summarise briefly

4) to misunderstand

5) to delay talking about something

6) to give the latest information

7) to talk about the most important thing

8) to hear about something passed from one person to another

J. Choose the correct word to complete each sentence.

1. They were at a social event but they talked kiosk / shop / store all evening.

2. It's on the edge / end / tip of my tongue. I'm sure I'll remember her name soon.

3. She's our best sales rep. She's really got the gift / skill / talent of the gab.

4. When they told me I was fired I was at a lack / loss / shortage for words.

5. She lost the notes for her talk so she had to speak off the collar / cuff / sleeve.

6. He wanted a 30% discount and 90 days' credit! We weren't even talking the same language / meaning / words.

7. I haven't got the information to hand but, off the top of my brain / head / mind, I'd say about 2.5 million.

8. I've studied their accounts carefully but I can't make head or foot / hand / tail of them.

K. Match these new idioms with their definitions.

1) air your views 2) be at a loss for words 3) drop a hint 4) give somebody the low-down 5) keep somebody up to date a) tell somebody all the information they want or need to know b) unable to say anything because something surprising or totally unexpected has happened c) express your opinions about something in public d) give somebody regular information about things e) make a suggestion in an indirect way

L. Ask your partner the following questions.

1. What have you heard on the grapevine recently?

2. When was the last time you got the wrong end of the stick?

3. When is it necessary to put someone in the picture?

4. In what situations is it good to beat about the bush?

5. In what situations is it good to get straight to the point?

6. Can you give an example of when you were talking at cross purposes?

7. Is there anything you can't make head or tail of?



Date: 2014-12-29; view: 4824

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