miércoles, 19 de agosto de 2015

Talking point: Different kinds of businesses

This week's talking point is businesses. Before getting together with the members of your conversation group, go over the questions below so that ideas flow more easily when you meet up with your friends and you can work out vocabulary problems beforehand.

If you could set up a business, what kind of business would it be? Why?
What are the advantages and disadvantages of running your own business?
Would you be willing to ask a bank for a loan to set up your own business?
Which of the following do you think are important if you want to succeed with a new business?
have an original idea - research the competition - have a lot of capital -
 think long-term - think short-term
Is it easy to set up a business in your country?
What steps do you have to follow?
What financial help can you get from institutions?
How important is the new technology and social media in setting up businesses today?
Imagine you are going to set up a business with your partner. Consider the options below and think about their pros and cons. Then try to agree on the one that would be most likely to succeed.
hair salon
pound shop
psychology clinic
estate agent
car repair shop
car dealer
internet café
Private security firm

To illustrate to point you can watch the BBC video how to do business in India.

Rajini Vaidyanathan: More and more people are coming to India to do business, but this is a country which is steeped in custom and tradition. So, what do you need to know to make sure you seal that deal? Well, we’ve enlisted the help of a corporate grooming expert to go through some of the dos and don’ts of doing business in India.
Suneeta Kanga’s on hand to help to guide us through some of the dos and don’ts. Nice to meet you Sunita, thank you for joining us. So, I’m greeting you in a first-time-I’ve-met-you business context. What was wrong or right about that?
Suneeta Kanga: OK, the handshake was good, Rajini, that’s good. A little less movement, just about that much. But, we can do away with the kisses and the embraces because that is not appropriate in India, it’s not required. Just a handshake, a little more eye contact with a larger smile to show that you’re happy to see me and maybe bow a little forward when you’re shaking hands.
Rajini Vaidyanathan:  Let’s try that the right way then. Hi, Suneeta, nice to meet you.
Suneeta Kanga: Nice to meet you.
Rajini Vaidyanathan:  So we’ve got the introductions out of the way. What next?
Suneeta Kanga: It’s important to create the right image through your attire, so even though India is a tropical country, nothing should be too revealing, too tight, too short. Perhaps a jacket, a formal jacket on what you’re wearing. A lighter shirt is always nicer. A pearl string would look nice and formal if you had matching earrings. Your trousers are too casual, maybe tailored your pants, and again, yes, though we could wear open-toed sandals, I think closed shoes always add an aura of formality, and perhaps something that has a heel, one to one and a half inch heel.
Rajini Vaidyanathan:  So, how does this look?
Suneeta Kanga: Very nice.
Rajini Vaidyanathan:  Now I’m ready to do business.
When it comes to high-level discussions, it’s often a good lunch or dinner where the real business is done. So, Suneeta, what are the dos and don’ts of an Indian business dinner?
Suneeta Kanga: OK, Rajini, in India most people at home would probably eat with their hands, but in a business dinner at a restaurant you should use spoons and forks. And the way to use it is that you take a little bit of rice and you mix it with a little bit of curry, push it with the fork onto the spoon, and then bring it to your mouth.
Rajini Vaidyanathan:  Some people aren’t used to eating curry or don’t like spicy food. How do you get through that without offending anyone?
Suneeta Kanga: You know, Indians are very proud of their culinary skills, so it would be nice if you could compliment on their food, but if you don’t like something, try and keep it to yourself, don’t show it on your face.
Rajini Vaidyanathan:  So we’ve had a good dinner and I’d really like to stay in touch with you Suneeta, so here’s my business card.
Suneeta Kanga: Thank you. Uh, Rajini, in India business cards are exchanged at the beginning of a meeting not at the end.
Rajini Vaidyanathan:  I did that wrong.
Suneeta Kanga: Yes, and also when you’re handing over a business card, take it out of your card holder, turn it around so that the writing faces the person you’re handing it over to. Either hold it with one hand or two hands and give it as if you’re giving a gift.
Rajini Vaidyanathan:  So let me do it the right way. Here’s my business card.
Suneeta Kanga: Thank you. When you receive someone’s card, look at it for some time, nod your head, say thank you and then put it away.
Rajini Vaidyanathan:  Thanks Suneeta, and I think I will be getting your business card because it looks like I still have a little bit of work to do on my business etiquette.