Saturday, June 16, 2012

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Phonetics & Names, pt 1: Good for Business

Image from Flickr

I don’t normally deal with English for business. However, I’ve taught it before and business students can be some of the hardest working students I meet.

Students of Business English always need to know more than the language, they need to know the culture. Respecting the traditions of a culture and making sure you don’t make any embarrassing mistakes is very useful in make a first impression.

First Impression: what a person thinks about you after meeting you for the first time.

People in business understand how important a first impression is and that is why I think it is very important to know how to pronounce names.

Think about how much it annoys you to hear your name pronounced incorrectly. Think about how happy you are if somebody pronounces your name correctly first time! Phonetics and the phonemic chart can help you!

oxford female names

Here is a page from the Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary. It has the most common English names and the phonetic spelling of the name. If you know how to read the phonetic alphabet then it works better than checking pronunciation with something like Google to listen to the audio.


Better understanding of English sounds and how to say them will improve your pronunciation in general.


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