Tuesday, July 09, 2013

Six Minute English: Annoying Office Habits

Many of us work in offices. Some of us are happy; many aren’t. In this week’s Six Minute English, we explore some of the things that drive us crazy in the office.

Read the questions and then listen to Rob and Jennifer.

Question 1 (Official):

What is the annoying habit of onychophagia commonly known as?
a) Picking your nose;
b) Biting your nails;
c) Talking very loudly

You’ll hear the answer at the end of the programme.

2) An example of annoying habits mentioned by the first speaker was: (give a short answer)

3) How did the first speaker counteract the bad habit? By (complete the sentence with a short phrase)

4) What bad habit does the second speaker describe? Talking in _____ . (one word)

5) What examples of this bad habit do Rob and Jenny give? “Thinking ___ ___ ___”, “Going ___”, “To ___ ___(one word for each space)

6) What do Rob and Jenny say is top of the list for bad office habits? " ..... " (Give a short answer)

7) What does Charles Elvin, of the Institute of Leadership, say that managers should do to eliminate bad habits? “..........” (Give a short answer summarising Mr Elvin's ideas.)

Now listen to the programme. Then, as always, send in your answers to the seven questions using the Tag Board or a Comment. I hope as many readers as possible will participate - to give us that communal, interactive Internet feeling!

Have a nice week. Yours,

Friday, July 05, 2013

Speak, tell, say or talk? - the answers

Hello everyone. First of all, I'm very sorry that over a month has passed since my last post. My excuse must be that it has been a very intense period at work, during which we changed to a new computer system.

However I can now give you the official answers to my previous question: how do you correctly use the verbs "Speak", "Tell","Say" and "Talk"?

Here they are:

1. A lot of people are talking about the latest murder in the Metro. 

2. When you see the directors, tell them I came to the meeting at the time we agreed - but no one turned up :-(

3. We're having talks with our partners on how to agree on intellectual property rights for these images.

4. I don't speak Arabic very well - just enough for basic communication. 

5. They are saying that we haven't kept our promises. It's not true.

Many thanks to Ilaria and Giovanni for their answers.

Coming up early next week: a Six Minute English Quiz from the BBC World Service 'Learning English' site.

And a very relaxing weekend to you all!

More soonest,