Did you know that more than a billion people speak English as a first or second language? It is the most-spoken language, followed by Mandarin. It’s safe to say that English is today’s “universal” language.
English has a simple 26 letter alphabet, much like most European languages, containing over 750,000 words! It is an essential language to learn as it helps us communicate with most people around the world- even online! It is the most spoken language in international business, technology, tourism, and many other fields.
As you may know, we are looking for talented offshore individuals with excellent oral and written communication skills in the English language. Are you confident in saying that you are up to par with your English skills, or do you believe there’s still some work to be done? Either way, there’s always room for improvement in this beautiful language! So we decided that we want to share some tips with you to up your English game:
The Core Skills
If you want to become fluent in English, you’ll need to work on all four skills, namely:
Maybe you are good at speaking English, but your listening skills need some work. If that is the case, you will struggle to have a good conversation, and it can cause overall problems, especially in a working environment. Once surrounded by fluent speakers, they might struggle to understand what you’re trying to say, which can cause a severe issue of them not taking you seriously.
On the other hand, struggling with reading and or writing can be problematic as it shuts you out of most online communications and opportunities. Yes, there is a Google translator and auto-corrections, but being dependent on that alone can cause harm to your self-confidence, and it may cost you a lot of time. All four English language skills are fundamental:
There are a lot of ways to improve your reading skills. Read the daily newspaper or online blogs. Do some research on the internet about top novels that might interest you and grab yourself a book to read in your spare time. Not only can this become a hobby, but it can also help you expand your vocabulary, improve your grammar and pronunciation of words and grow your overall knowledge!
Reading is a crucial skill in finding a good job. Many companies, including ourselves, require reading as a part of job performance. Besides that, it develops the mind, a muscle that needs exercise. We should remember that people are limited in what they can accomplish without good reading skills.
Pay attention to every sentence you read by reading at a slower pace. It will help you understand the rules of writing. Make sure to read things that match your interest; otherwise, you might give up trying. Read every day, even if it’s for 30-40 minutes. In that way, it will become a hobby, and you will obtain all the skills necessary in no time.
Reading is closely related to writing, and therefore it’s crucial to read as much as you can! But, it’s not only about reading your favorite novels. Make sure to keep an English dictionary close by to look up words to clarify their meaning. It can also help you learn more about synonyms and antonyms to broaden your writing skills. Besides that, a dictionary can also help you with your spelling!
Having this skill in your “toolbox” will allow you to write to anyone in English, which is essential, especially in Job Duck, as you have to write emails, prepare reports and communicate a lot through writing.
Taking that into account, make sure to do some grammar exercises daily. Grammar is usually more formal and structured. Therefore, it’s more important when you write to make sure that everything is in place. Also, make sure your spelling is correct. Paragraphs are also a huge part of writing, and it’s essential to learn how to organize a paragraph. Remember to ask for someone to read what you’ve written, especially those fluent in English, and learn more about the errors you made!
The best way to improve your speaking skills is by expanding your vocabulary. Make sure to learn new words every day. If you love music, pay close attention to the lyrics and write down words you do not know. Find the meaning of the word and practice saying it until you pronounce it correctly. You can also record yourself speaking sentences in English. That way, you can track your progress and pick up on pronunciations you might get wrong.
When you improve your speaking skills, it will allow you to express your thoughts and communicate in presentations with a lot of confidence. Remember that you can have more insightful conversations the more fluent you are in English.
If you want to up your speaking skills, even more, be sure to surround yourself with the English language. By that, we mean you should find a conversation partner. Preferably a native English speaker with whom you can practice your English. If you do not know a native speaker, be sure to search for online tutors who can help you go in the right direction. Surround yourself with English movies, books, music, and whatever else you can find and mimic the words you hear.
There are many ways to develop your listening skills, but we found the best working tip- listening to podcasts in English. What works even better is to find someone who also listens to the same podcasts as you do. In that way, you can talk about all the interesting things you learned from the episode. It will help you pay attention to everything you hear and skyrocket your listening skills. You can also listen to news channels, radio stations, and even interviews.
Listening is the key to communication. Not only does listening improve your ability to understand better, but it also makes the experience of speaking to you more enjoyable to other people. Besides that, listening reduces misunderstandings. You can also learn more by listening. It helps eliminate conflict and helps build trust and respect.
Make sure to remove distractions. Set yourself some listening goals. For instance, aim to learn a few words each time you listen to something. Aim to focus on expressions you haven’t heard before. Remember that improving listening requires repeated exposure. Write out useful words and phrases. Repeat what you hear. And sum up what you have listened to by writing the sentences down on a piece of paper.
Remember to analyze what you practice, identify your weaknesses, and find ways to address whatever struggles you may encounter. We hope you enjoyed this week’s blog and if you believe that someone else might find it helpful, be sure to share it with them! What did you learn from this article? Let us know in the comment section below, and if you would like to apply to one of our positions, click HERE.
As always, stay safe,
The Job Duck Team