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BUSINESS COMMUNICATION / UNIT 8

UNIT 8 Presentations MODULE A:


A1: Background information and class activities (SPEAKING) A2: Testing material

MODULE B:
B1: Writing skills B2: Written test question format and testing material

Essential resources (dictionaries)


Longman: http://www.ldoceonline.com/ Oxford: http://oald8.oxfordlearnersdictionaries.com/ Macmillan: http://www.macmillandictionary.com/ Cambridge: http://dictionary.cambridge.org/ Cobuild: http://www.mycobuild.com/free-search.aspx Merriam-Websters (American English): http://www.learnersdictionary.com/

Extra resources
British English / grammar (BBC ENGLISH): http://www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice/learningenglish/language/askaboutenglish/ British English / reading, listening and vocabulary (BBC ENGLISH): http://www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice/learningenglish/language/wordsinthenews/ British English (news, BBC): http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/ American English (news, VOA): http://www.voanews.com/ American English (learning English, VOA): http://learningenglish.voanews.com/

BUSINESS COMMUNICATION / UNIT 8

MODULE A1 Background info and class activities (SPEAKING)


#1 TYPES OF PRESENTATION Knowing how to deliver memorable presentations is one of the most important skills a businessperson can develop. Speaking effectively not only helps get your ideas across, but it also enhances your stature in the company and provides a potential arena for leadership. One of the cardinal rules of delivering an effective presentation is to always start with an attention-getter. That could be a story, some humour, a powerful quote or some statistics. However, as we have a limited amount of time, the first thing out of our mouth has to grab the audience. The first step in shaping an effective speech or presentation is to decide on the type of presentation you want to make simply ask yourself what purpose you want to achieve. The easiest and most common type of presentation is informative its purpose is simply to share information with others. But whenever you have information to share, you should aim for something more, such as to enhance your career and visibility among the people who make decisions about what you do on a daily basis. Another type of presentation is demonstrative thats when you show people how to do things. Demonstrations are the most direct and efficient form of presentation. Yet another presentation type is persuasive designed to change peoples attitudes, beliefs or behaviour. This is the most difficult to accomplish. To get people to actually do something or change the way they feel is a very subtle and sophisticated process, but it can also be the most rewarding. Finally, there are ritual speeches or presentations. These are delivered to mark an occasion, to make an announcement or simply to celebrate or entertain. This is how most of us get our start in public speaking, offering toasts or making introductions in front of a group. Ritual presentations are used in business as well as in social settings.

1. Which of the presentation types above would you consider the most difficult and why? 2. What kinds of presentations have you given so far? Describe the experience as a whole.

BUSINESS COMMUNICATION / UNIT 8 #2 STAGE FRIGHT According to results from different surveys, when people were asked to name their greatest fear, the number one answer was public speaking. Apparently, people are more scared of speaking in public than of snakes or dog bites! Every speaker feels stage fright at one point, but even a person with no experience can learn to manage and control it. In fact, stage fright can actually help improve your performance. Youll find that people who score higher on the stage-fright scale tend to give better speeches. Thats because a good, healthy dose of fear makes us prepare more effectively. In order to keep stage fright in check, one thing is to be prepared, to know the subject matter and be comfortable with it. Second, the physical environment has to be well organized. The most important point is that stage fright should never stop anyone from delivering a presentation. Refusing to get up and speak in front of other people can do your career serious damage. Remember a few simple techniques that can help you conquer stage fright. Pay attention to physical effects. Everyone reacts differently, but some of the most common sensations are shortness of breath, an empty feeling in the pit of your stomach and rapid heartbeat. Think about each one and trace it to its source in your body. Then, counter it with deep breathing, concentration and relaxation exercises. Next, organize your information to make a point, get prepared and know your material. Also, try to figure out what could go wrong by identifying the worst-case scenario. Devise a backup plan to prevent it from happening. Try to use prompts like sketchy notes on cue cards to remind you of what youre most afraid of forgetting. Familiarize yourself with the setting, practise your delivery and always remember that youve been asked to speak because you have something important to say. Dont forget to be passionate about your message!

3. 4. 5. 6.

Try to recall some of your experiences of speaking in public. How did you feel? Explain. Why would you think that most people are afraid of public speaking? What is your own case? Do you know of any good techniques for reducing stage fright? Have you ever used them? Is stage fright always a bad thing? Why (not)?

BUSINESS COMMUNICATION / UNIT 8 #3 BEING MEMORABLE: THE SPEAKER In designing a presentation or speech, there are four key concepts to consider: the speaker, the message, the audience and the delivery. Thinking through each of these elements will help lead to a memorable presentation. In delivering a message, a great deal depends on the speakers credibility, which has to do with how well or how poorly the speaker is perceived. Credibility determines whether or not our message is believable, based on the person who delivers it. You tend to believe messages delivered by people you respect. Conversely, you may have a little trouble believing people you dont like very much. Credibility involves intangibles like physical appearance, personality, reputation and tone of voice, but it can also vary with the nature of the message itself. It takes, for example, a very credible person to deliver really bad news without alienating the audience. Everyone is both credible and non-credible when they get up in front of an audience. They have a honeymoon period of about five minutes when they say who they are and what they are going to ta lk about. After that, they have to make the relationship between themselves and the audience really work. They have to prove that what theyre saying can be backed up with facts and good examples. We can distinguish between face credibility, which has to do with being known and respected, and earned credibility, which has to do with how a person presents the message. An unpopular message will be more acceptable if delivered by someone the audience like, but delivering that particular unpopular message can undermine the speakers credibility. The human mind has difficulty in separating its feelings about the message from its feelings about the sender of the message. If someone tells me something I dont want to hear, Im going to think less of them. Experienced speakers suggest that if you have to deliver an unpopular message, you can salvage your credibility by ending on a high, optimistic note.

7. When speaking in public, do you think you usually have face credibility or do you always have to earn it? 8. How could you deliver a negative message to a group of people / an audience without undermining your credibility? 9. What would make you respect a public speaker? Do you have an example? 10. How should a speaker prepare before a presentation in order to be memorable? 11. How could a presenter avoid boring his / her audience? 12. When making a presentation, how would you cope with the following emergency situations? right before your presentation you realize that the multimedia projector (or any other electronic device) does not work; you are using cue cards and during your presentation you accidentally drop them on the floor the cards are not numbered! right in the middle of your presentation your mobile phone rings you forgot to switch it off; halfway through your presentation you realize youre showing the audience an older / incomplete / out-of-date version of your slideshow; youre chewing gum as you speak (to calm your nerves) at one point, while youre passionately explaining something, your chewing gum pops out of your mouth and onto the floor / podium.

BUSINESS COMMUNICATION / UNIT 8 #4 BEING MEMORABLE: THE MESSAGE The second requirement for a memorable presentation is an organized, well-prepared message. Every presentation should have one main purpose and only one! You can break it down into subcategories, sub-points and sub-sub-points, but remember that you have one main reason to be standing up there. Once youve decided on the type of presentation you want to give and identified its purpose, you should be ready to construct the message, point by point. One method is to ask yourself: What do my listeners want to know? Dont try to say too much. Most presentations should contain between three and five main points. Thats because human beings process information better in odd numbers. There are several ways of structuring the material. It can be organized chronologically, telling a story in the order that the events occurred. The information can flow from the most important ideas to the least, or build from small examples all the way to the most significant ones. It can also be set up as a series of problems and solutions, pros and cons, or tell and sell. It can compare and contrast, or it can follow a series of progressive steps.

13. Think of the most successful presentation youve made. How did you prepare your message? 14. Think of a presentation youve attended. What did you like / dislike about it regarding the message?

BUSINESS COMMUNICATION / UNIT 8 #5 BEING MEMORABLE: THE AUDIENCE Your choice of a presentation style will be driven by the nature of the message and by the audience. Its important to know everything you can about the audience before sitting down to write your presentation. In addition to the organizational structure, they will determine the kind of language you use, how formal or informal you are, as well as the depth and complexity of your message. Here are some questions to ask yourself about your audience: Who are these people? How old are they? How many men and how many women? What are their backgrounds? Do we share the same language? Do we share cultural assumptions? Why are they here? What do they need to know? What are their attitudes and opinions about my subject matter? What happened to them just before I arrived? Are they open and eager to listen, or are they tired, hungry or impatient?

15. How would you handle the following situations during a presentation? some members of the audience are late whenever a new one arrives you have to stop and then resume your presentation; while speaking, you see that some members of the audience are staring at the ceiling, looking out of the window, talking to other people in the room or fiddling with their mobile phones or other objects; some members of the audience keep interrupting you in order to ask questions; you are asked questions which you dont know how to answer. 16. Suggest some strategies on how to deal with the following types of audience: most audience members are women / men / older than you / younger than you / foreigners / visibly tired; some audiences simply like to listen and not participate; some audiences expect to be able to interrupt; some audiences see informality as unprofessional; some audiences dont have in-depth knowledge of your topic; some audiences prefer a more improvised style to an explicit structure; some audiences dont like to see a lot of slides; some audiences consider digression unprofessional; some audiences expect a presenter to be dynamic; some audiences favour spontaneity over precision.

BUSINESS COMMUNICATION / UNIT 8 #6 BEING MEMORABLE: THE DELIVERY The final step in constructing a memorable presentation is to make sure your delivery is effective the best way to accomplish this is sound preparation and extensive practice. Even if you know your material backward and forward, youll deliver a better speech if youve gone over it previously. Another element in an effective delivery is proof. Each main point must have some supporting evidence in order for people to believe it otherwise, its just your own opinion. There are three different types of proof that can be classified according to the Greek terminology: ethos, logos and pathos. Ethos is, in effect, the Greek concept of credibility, relying on the authority of the speaker. This type of proof can also be based on the expertise of well-known people being quoted, or reliable sources cited. What Im saying is true, because Im the one whos saying it or, You can believe it because this famous expert says its so. Logos is simply evidence supported by facts: statistics, studies, numbers or articles. While statistics are often manipulated, they are the most powerful and persuasive forms of proof thats because people tend to believe in facts. The third type of proof, pathos, is the most subtle and the most persuasive, but can backfire. Pathos refers to experiences or feelings the speaker elicits in the audience, in order to support or reinforce the message. Such emotions may include sympathy, comfort, amusement, happiness, security, unity, passion, outrage, disbelief, fear, dislike and betrayal. However, setting off strong emotions, especially negative ones like fear and distrust, requires a delicate balance. Appealing to peoples fears not only makes them frustrated, but they wont like you very much if you make them feel scared. To sum up, anyone who wants to succeed in the business world has to master the basics of delivering effective presentations. To avoid this powerful tool of leadership would put your career at risk. Some degree of stage fright is inevitable, but it can be overcome and it can even be used as a positive motivational force as you prepare your message. Creating a memorable presentation is a matter of organizing the material, analysing the audience, setting down your objectives and being thoroughly prepared.

17. Regarding ethos, logos and pathos, which would you consider your forte in a presentation and why? 18. Which of the four aspects already mentioned (the speaker, the message, the audience, the delivery) would you consider the most important for the success of a presentation? Input texts adapted from Margareta Petru, Eugenia Irimia, STEPS TO EFFECTIVE BUSINESS COMMUNICATION, Argonaut, Cluj- Napca, 2008; output questions by Adrian Ciupe, 2012; some questions adapted from Bob Dignen, ENGLISH FOR PRESENTATIONS / BUSINESS MINIMAX, York Associates, 2008.

BUSINESS COMMUNICATION / UNIT 8

MODULE A2 Testing material


#1 TYPES OF PRESENTATION Knowing how to deliver memorable presentations is one of the most important skills a 1____businessperson can develop. Speaking effectively not only helps get your ideas 2____across, but it also 3____enhances your 4____stature in the company and provides a potential 5____arena for leadership. One of the 6____cardinal rules of delivering an effective presentation is to always start with an attention-getter. That could be a story, some humour, a powerful 7____quote or some statistics. However, as we have a limited amount of time, the first thing out of our mouth has to 8____grab the audience. The first step in 9____shaping an effective speech or presentation is to decide on the type of presentation you want to make simply ask yourself what purpose you want to achieve. The easiest and most common type of presentation is informative its purpose is simply to share information with others. But whenever you have information to share, you should 10____aim for something more, such as to 11____enhance your career and visibility among the people who make decisions about what you do on a 12____daily basis. Another type of presentation is demonstrative thats when you show people how to do things. Demonstrations are the most direct and efficient form of presentation. 13____Yet another presentation type is persuasive designed to change peoples attitudes, 14____beliefs or behaviour. This is the most difficult to accomplish. To get people to actually do something or change the way they feel is a very subtle and 15____sophisticated process, but it can also be the most 16____rewarding. Finally, there are ritual speeches or presentations. These are delivered to 17____mark an occasion, to make an 18____announcement or simply to celebrate or 19____entertain. This is how most of us get our start in public speaking, offering 20____toasts or making introductions in front of a group. Ritual presentations are used in business as well as in social 21____settings. #2 STAGE FRIGHT According to results from different 22____surveys, when people were asked to 23____name their greatest fear, the number one answer was public speaking. Apparently, people are more scared of speaking in public than of snakes or dog bites! Every speaker feels stage fright at one point, but even a person with no experience can learn to manage and control it. In fact, stage fright can actually help 24____improve your performance. Youll find that people who score 25____higher on the stagefright 26____scale tend to give better speeches. Thats because a good, healthy 27____dose of fear makes us prepare more effectively. In order to keep stage fright in 28____check, one thing is to be prepared, to know the subject 29____matter and be comfortable with it. Second, the 30____physical environment has to be well organized. The most important point is that stage fright should never stop anyone from delivering a presentation. Refusing to get up and speak in front of other people can 31____do your career serious 32____damage. Remember a few simple 33____techniques that can help you 34____conquer stage fright. Pay attention to 35____physical effects. Everyone reacts differently, but some of the most common sensations are 36____shortness of breath, an empty feeling in the 37____pit of your stomach and rapid 38____heartbeat. Think about each one and trace it to its 39____source in your body. Then, 40____counter it with deep breathing, concentration and relaxation exercises. Next, organize your information to 41____make a point, get prepared and know your material. Also, try to figure out what could go wrong by identifying the 42____worst-case 43____scenario. Devise a 44____backup plan to prevent it from happening. Try to use 45____prompts like sketchy notes on 46____cue cards to remind you of what youre most afraid of 47____forgetting. Familiarize yourself with the 48____setting, 49____practise your delivery and

BUSINESS COMMUNICATION / UNIT 8 always remember that youve been asked to speak because you have something important to say. Dont forget to be 50____passionate about your message! #3 BEING MEMORABLE: THE SPEAKER In 51____designing a presentation or speech, there are four 52____key concepts to consider: the speaker, the message, the audience and the delivery. Thinking 53____through each of these elements will help lead to a memorable presentation. In delivering a message, a great 54____deal depends on the speakers credibility, which has to do with how well or how 55____poorly the speaker is 56____perceived. Credibility determines whether or not our message is 57____believable, based on the person who delivers it. You 58____tend to believe messages delivered by people you respect. 59____Conversely, you may have a little trouble believing people you dont like very much. Credibility involves 60____intangibles like physical appearance, personality, reputation and 61____tone of voice, but it can also 62____vary with the nature of the message itself. It takes, for example, a very credible person to deliver really bad news without 63____alienating the audience. Everyone is both credible and non-credible when they get up in front of an audience. They have a 64____honeymoon period of about five minutes when they say who they are and what they are going to talk about. After that, they have to make the relationship between themselves and the audience really work. They have to prove that what theyre saying can be 65____backed up with facts and good examples. We can 66____distinguish between face credibility, which has to do with being known and respected, and earned credibility, which has to do with how a person presents the message. An unpopular message will be more acceptable if delivered by someone the audience like, but delivering that particular unpopular message can 67____undermine the speakers credibility. The human mind has difficulty in separating its feelings about the message from its feelings about the 68____sender of the message. If someone tells me something I dont want to hear, Im going to think 69____less of them. Experienced speakers 70____suggest that if you have to deliver an unpopular message, you can 71____salvage your credibility by ending on a 72____high, optimistic note. #4 BEING MEMORABLE: THE MESSAGE The second 73____requirement for a memorable presentation is an organized, well-prepared message. Every presentation should have one main purpose and only one! You can break it down into 74____subcategories, sub-points and sub-subpoints, but remember that you have one main reason to be 75____standing up there. Once youve decided on the type of presentation you want to give and 76____identified its purpose, you should be ready to construct the message, point by point. One 77____method is to ask yourself: What do my listeners want to know? Dont try to say too much. Most presentations should contain between three and five main points. Thats because human 78____beings process information better in 79____odd numbers. There are several ways of 80____structuring the material. It can be organized 81____chronologically, telling a story in the order that the events 82____occurred. The information can flow from the most important ideas to the 83____least, or build from small examples all the way to the most 84____significant ones. It can also be 85____set up as a series of problems and solutions, pros and 86____cons, or tell and sell. It can compare and contrast, or it can follow a 87____series of progressive steps.

BUSINESS COMMUNICATION / UNIT 8 #5 BEING MEMORABLE: THE AUDIENCE Your 88____choice of a presentation style will be driven by the nature of the message and by the audience. Its important to know everything you can about the audience before 89____sitting down to write your presentation. In addition to the 90____organizational structure, they will determine the kind of language you use, how formal or informal you are, as well as the 91____depth and complexity of your message. Here are some questions to ask yourself about your audience: Who are these people? How old are they? How many men and how many women? What are their 92____backgrounds? Do we 93____share the same language? Do we 94____share cultural 95____assumptions? Why are they here? What do they need to know? What are their attitudes and opinions about my subject 96____matter? What happened to them just before I arrived? Are they open and 97____eager to listen, or are they tired, hungry or 98____impatient? #6 BEING MEMORABLE: THE DELIVERY The final step in 99____constructing a memorable presentation is to make sure your delivery is effective the best way to 100____accomplish this is 101____sound preparation and 102____extensive practice. Even if you know your material backward and 103____forward, youll deliver a better speech if youve gone over it 104____previously. Another element in an effective delivery is proof. Each main point must have some 105____supporting evidence in order for people to believe it 106____otherwise, its just your own opinion. There are three different types of proof that can be 107____classified according to the Greek terminology: ethos, logos and pathos. Ethos is, in 108____effect, the Greek concept of credibility, 109____relying on the authority of the speaker. This type of proof can also be based on the 110____expertise of well-known people being 111____quoted, or reliable sources 112____cited. What Im saying is true, because Im the one whos saying it or, You can believe it because this famous expert says its so. Logos is simply evidence supported by facts: 113____statistics, studies, numbers or articles. While statistics are often 114____manipulated, they are the most powerful and 115____persuasive forms of proof thats because people tend to 116____believe in facts. The third type of proof, pathos, is the most subtle and the most persuasive, but can 117____backfire. Pathos refers to experiences or feelings the speaker 118____elicits in the audience, in order to support or 119____reinforce the message. Such emotions may include 120____sympathy, comfort, amusement, 121____happiness, security, unity, passion, 122____outrage, 123____disbelief, fear, dislike and 124____betrayal. However, 125____setting off strong emotions, especially negative ones like fear and 126____distrust, requires a 127____delicate balance. Appealing to peoples fears not only makes them frustrated, but they wont like you very much if you make them feel scared. To 128____sum up, anyone who wants to 129____succeed in the business world has to 130____master the 131____basics of delivering effective presentations. To avoid this powerful 132____tool of leadership would put your career at 133____risk. Some degree of stage 134____fright is inevitable, but it can be overcome and it can even be used as a positive 135____motivational force as you prepare your message. Creating a memorable presentation is a matter of organizing the material, 136____analysing the audience, setting down your objectives and being 137____thoroughly prepared. Input texts adapted from Margareta Petru, Eugenia Irimia, STEPS TO EFFECTIVE BUSINESS COMMUNICATION, Argonaut, Cluj- Napca, 2008; output questions by Adrian Ciupe, 2012; some questions adapted from Bob Dignen, ENGLISH FOR PRESENTATIONS / BUSINESS MINIMAX, York Associates, 2008.

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BUSINESS COMMUNICATION / UNIT 8

MODULE B1 Writing skills (ARGUMENTATIVE ESSAYS)

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BUSINESS COMMUNICATION / UNIT 8

MODULE B2 MODULE B2 Written test question format (OPEN CLOZE 2) Testing material
TIPS AND STRATEGIES: Remember that you will have to fill in ONLY with a preposition (c.f. expressions including dependent prepositions) or an adverbial particle (c.f. phrasal verbs) no other parts of speech! Remember that the preposition / adverbial particle should correctly form a prepositional phrase or a phrasal verb (you will have sufficient clues in the surrounding context). Before filling in, look carefully at the context immediately to the left and / or to the right of each blank you will find the clues there. The preposition / particle you need is EXPLICITLY required by an incomplete fixed expression (prepositional phrase or phrasal verb). Remember that ONLY ONE preposition / particle is correct no multiple versions will be possible. Check your answers at the end.

#1 QUICK TEST Only humans are capable 1____speech. Parents need to encourage a sense of responsibility 2____their children. People lacking supportive relationships were expected to be prone 3____depression. Please accept this gift 4____a small token of our appreciation. Profit is in direct relation 5____the amount of investment.

#2 QUICK TEST Prosciutto is the Italian word 1____ham. Reiss used his Brooklyn home 2____security for the loan. Relations between neighbours 3____the estate are very good. She doesnt buy beauty products that have been tested 4____animals. She has the final word 5____whether policies are put into action or not.

#3 QUICK TEST She hesitated, searching 1____words. She is a boss 2____strict moral principles. She is a manager 3____responsibility for over 100 staff. She made impassioned speeches 4____civil rights. Shes a relation 5____marriage because she married my cousin.

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BUSINESS COMMUNICATION / UNIT 8 #4 QUICK TEST Similar policies were pursued in the 1970s, particularly in relation 1____health services. Terrorist activity is a threat 2____national security. Thank you to those who responded to our request 3____information last month. That certificate is a minimum requirement for entry 4____music college. The allegations bore no / little relationship 5____the facts.

#5 QUICK TEST The bank would not reveal its figures, 1____repeated requests. The business is doing very well you can take my word 2____it. The case is likely to go 3____judicial review. The chairman put 4____a possible solution. The change 5____government led to improved industrial / labour relations.

#6 QUICK TEST The company hired Bob to conduct an independent review 1____their workplace procedures. The company is 2____the process of moving to new offices. The conference room was square 3____shape. The crisis meant a sharp rise 4____unemployment. The evidence points 5____a close relationship between poverty and disease.

#7 QUICK TEST The fee bears little relation 1____the service provided. The final word 2____policy determination belongs to the committee. The firm is considering a change 3____its marketing strategy. The government came up with new regulations 4____imports. The government has agreed 5____principle to a referendum.

#8 QUICK TEST The government has failed to come 1____with an effective solution. The government is spending more on projects to bring 2____unemployment. The government was 3____blame for the countrys economic problems. The meeting will be open 4____the general public. The negotiations were conducted 5____tight security.

#9 QUICK TEST The newspaper printed his speech more or less word 1____word. The policy comes up 2____review in April. The policy review proposed radical changes 3____the system. The problem lies 4____the make-up of the work team. The question could not be resolved, at least not 5____my satisfaction.

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BUSINESS COMMUNICATION / UNIT 8 #10 QUICK TEST The way in which he had conducted meetings has often come 1____for criticism from his subordinates. There are security checks at the entrance 2____the courtrooms. There are strict security checks 3____everyone entering the company headquarters. There are three possible solutions 4____this problem. There has been a breakdown 5____negotiations.

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