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Facing the challenges

The coronavirus crisis has forced many people to find new,
and sometimes more creative, ways of doing their work.

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he coronavirus crisis is exactly that: a crisis, both in health and Flüssigeres Englisch
economic terms. Hundreds of thousands of people have lost Verbessertes Sprachgefühl
loved ones. Millions of people have lost their jobs, been put on
unpaid leave or on short-time work. And millions more have had
Gesteigerte Sprachsicherheit
to change the way they do their work. This includes the large
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move from offering face-to-face courses to online ones, mastering Das sagen unsere Kunden:
new techniques and tools for both group and one-to-one sessions. • „maximale Effektivität...
At Business Spotlight, we have also had to change our working practices mit Spaß und Freude“
to produce this magazine. We worked almost exclusively from home,
using videoconferences instead of our normal team meetings (see p. 82)
• „eine tolle Woche, eine tolle
and keeping in touch via email, chat and other communication tools.
As Bob Dignen points out in our cover feature, there is no reason why • „ein perfekt abgestimmtes
remote working can’t be just as effective as working in traditional Programm“
Titel Illustration: Mick MArston; Illustration: Mick Marston; Foto: Gert Krautbauer

office situations. In Bob’s article, you’ll discover the ten habits you need
• „straff, abwechslungsreich
to develop for working remotely (pp. 34–41).
und humorvoll gestaltet“
With this issue of Business Spotlight, we say farewell to our columnist
Elisabeth Ribbans. For the past six years, her It’s Personal column
(see p. 20) has provided fascinating insights into the world of business.
Elisabeth has now become The Guardian and Observer’s global readers’
editor. We wish her well in her new — and, no doubt, challenging — role.

EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Kostenlose Sprachtests und Beratung
Montag bis Freitag von 9:00 – 18:00 Uhr
Tel. 089 23 51 58 72
EDITORIAL 4/2020 Business Spotlight 3
The Big Picture Language Test
6 Indonesia  M 28 Corporate Social Responsibility 
Toxins for tofu E  M  A 
How well do you know the
Working World language of CSR?
8 Names & News  E  M  A   
The latest from the world Cover story
of business Business Skills
34 Remote Working  A   
Global Business The habits you need for working
14 Whistleblowing  A  effectively at home
 How one woman took on Personal Trainer  M 
Uber over harrassment Ken Taylor on how music
19 How to...  A  helps to connect people
Blow the whistle
Viewpoint Head-to-Head  A 
It’s Personal  A
20  Should companies track
Elisabeth Ribbans says farewell employee health?

Intercultural Communication Technology

22 Coronavirus  A 66 Internet Privacy  A
How different cultures have tried Keeping your data secure
to manage the health crisis with a new kind of app
25 Interview  M
Rudi Camerer and Judith Mader on Careers & Management
intercultural competence 70 Perfectionism  A
The pros and cons of trying
to be perfect at work

Language section 77 Executive Eye  A 
Adrian Furnham on the use
48 V
 ocabulary  E of aggressive language Careers & Management
A bicycle repair shop Dealing with the positive
Translation  M
Work & Relax and negative aspects of
78 In the Zone  A    perfectionism at work
Tricky translations
Julian Earwaker on the balancing
Language Cards
51  act of dual-career couples
To pull out and practise
80 Away from Your Desk  M
Easy English   E   
54  Tips for your off-duty hours
Sharing knowledge
56 G
 rammar  E 
And Finally...
84 One Question  M
Negation (1)
Who am I?
Talking Finance  A 
The coronavirus crisis Regular sections

58 S
 hort Story   M  3 Editorial
Viktoria’s secret 45 Classified Ads
82 Feedback / Jargon Buster
English for…  M
83 Preview / Impressum
English on the Move   M   
Problems at a restaurant
Key Words 
Executive Eye
Vocabulary from this issue
Aggressive language
in the workplace

4  Business Spotlight 4/2020

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BUSINESS SKILLS: Working from home

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in the Classroom
1 0 H A B I T S YO U N E E D TO D E V E LO P



Contents Social distancing

at work

To order this six-page supple-

IN MAGAZINE Wherever possible during the Covid-19
crisis, people are being asked to work
from home. Remote working brings all
1. Too perfect? Perfectionism in the 90 A “Perfectly imperfect” 2 sorts of new challenges. In this issue of
workplace (pp. 70–76) Business Spotlight in the classroom, our ac-
2. WFH Exploring key skills for 90 M “Home alone” 2 tivity “WFH” (p. 2) will help you explore
remote working (pp. 34–44) ways to cope with your students.
3. Blow the whistle Whistleblowing and sexual 60 A “Driving her point home” 3
harassment (pp. 14–18) Dual-career couples are probably having
a hard time right now. “It takes two” (p. 5)
4. Share more * How to share knowledge 90 E “Sharing knowledge” 3

ment for teachers and trainers,

looks at what they can do to make things
more effectively (pp. 54–55)
work better for both working partners.

In such uncertain times, it’s essential that

ROLE CARDS * Photocopiable material for the activity “Share more” 4
we all share our (fact-based!) knowledge
WARMERS AND FILLERS effectively. Have your students try out
different techniques with our activity
1. Make it work Dual-career couples 30 A “It takes two” 5
“Share more” (p. 3). We also provide tips
(pp. 78–79)
on how to adapt the tasks for an online
2. Unhealthy goals? Debating health tracking 30 M Head-to-Head 5
of the workforce (pp. 64–65)
3. Digital snoopers How to take control of 30 A “Protecting yourself” 5 We hope you are safe and well.

send an email to: schulmedien@

your online privacy (pp. 66–69)
4. Work rage The effects of aggressive 30 A Executive Eye 5
language at work (p. 77)

HIGHLIGHT Tune in to listening activities on remote working 5 DEBORAH CAPRAS

Author, editor, trainer
SERVICE Important dates | onestopenglish subscription offer 5



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4/2020 Business Spotlight 1

Global Business

➳ 63

Blowing the whistle Sprachtraining leicht gemacht SKILL UP!

can change lives — Our vocabulary booklet pro-
as Susan Fowler THE LANGUAGE OF vides a wide range of terms and
discovered at Uber Business Skills
How to make

expressions. In this issue, learn
the language of giving feedback.
remote working
smooth sailing

For more articles, audio and exercises:
Fotos: Georg Lechner; Rita Quinn/Getty Images; Ploychan, alxpin/; Illustration: Mick Marston

Language in Business Spotlight

➻ Articles use the style, spelling, punctuation and pronuncia-
tion of British English unless otherwise marked.
➻ Articles that use American style, spelling, punctuation and
pronunciation are marked with “US”.

Approximately Approximately Approximately

at CEF level A2 at CEF levels B1–B2 at CEF levels C1–C2
CEF: European Framework of Reference for Languages

ifml.: informal word or phrase

vulg.: vulgar word or phrase; sl.: slang word or phrase
non-stand.: non-standard word or phrase
UK: chiefly British usage; US: chiefly North American usage

Telephone  +49 (0)89/12 14 07 10
Fax  +49 (0)89/12 14 07 11

CONTENTS 4/2020 Business Spotlight 5 

THE BIG PICTURE The smoke and ash produced by the tofu production con-
INDONESIA taminates the air and food of the islanders. Local chicken eggs,
for example, have high levels of dioxin, a noxious chemical

Toxins for tofu

known to cause cancer and birth defects, among other illness-
es. One of Mr Karnawi’s eggs was tested and showed one of
the highest levels of dioxin Asia had ever recorded.
The cost of plastic is as low as a tenth of that of wood, the
fuel traditionally used in production. So, despite the risks, the
You toss your plastic takeaway container into the recycling tofu makers continue to use it for their kitchen fires.
bin and walk off with a clear conscience. But what happens
Foto: Ulet Ifansasti/The New York Times/Redux/laif

to that plastic? churn sth. out dozen [(dVz&n]  ship sth. [SIp] 
Dishonest foreign waste handlers often mix plastic waste [)tS§:n (aUt]  , Dutzend ,  etw. befördern
with paper waste, which is shipped to Java, an island in Indo- ,  etw. ausstoßen
fuel (sth.) [fju:El]  takeaway container
nesia. Dozens of local tofu makers use the plastic to fuel their clear conscience: ,  Brennstoff; etw. mit [(teIkEweI kEn)teInE]
with a ~ Brennstoff versorgen UK , Einwegbehälter
production of tofu, churning out black clouds of toxic smoke.
[)klIE (kQnS&ns] 
“They start the burning early in the morning and go until noxious [(nQkSEs]  toss sth. [tQs] 
,  mit gutem Gewissen
,  schädlich, giftig ,  etw. werfen,
evening,” Karnawi, 84, told The New York Times. “For me, it’s customary (weg)schmeißen
difficult to breathe.” As is customary in Indonesia, Karnawi recycling bin
[)ri:(saIk&lIN bIn] UK 
uses only one name. , üblich
, Wertstofftonne

6  Business Spotlight 4/2020

Tofu producers:
adding fuel to the
fire and chemicals
to the air

4/2020 Business Spotlight 7 


Silly videos in the

workplace: not so funny
for employers


TikTok, you’re still

on the clock MEDIUM AUDIO PLUS
builder [(bIldE] 
, Bauarbeiter(in)

chief social officer

[)tSi:f )sEUS&l
, Peinlichkeit;
hier: Sich-Bloß-
(QfIsE] ,  etwa:
Across the UK, workers are uploading video Many employers, however, worry that the Beauftragte(r) goof off
clips of themselves goofing off in the work- videos may make workers seem unprofession- für gesellschafts- [)gu:f (Qf] US ifml. 
spezifische , faulenzen;
place. Uniformed builders do a rooftop dance al or distract them from their work. The UK
Angelegenheiten hier: herumalbern
routine. A policewoman and her partner sing supermarket chain Tesco has banned workers
cringeworthy law enforcement
along to the radio. The clips have been watched from making clips. “We ask all our colleagues [(krIndZ)w§:Di] [(lO: In)fO:smEnt] 
millions of times on TikTok, a short-form video to use their judgement … and make sure that ifml.  , Polizeivollzugs-
social media platform. it doesn’t get in the way of doing their jobs,” , oberpeinlich, dienst
zum Fremdschämen
The videos are popular for many reasons. says a Tesco spokesperson. Videos made in on the clock: be ~
dance routine [)Qn DE (klQk] ifml. 
Brendan Gahan, chief social officer at Mekan- Tesco and three of the UK’s other major super-
[(dA:ns ru:)ti:n]  ,  etwa: (in der
ism, a marketing agency, told The Guardian that markets have been viewed nearly 100 million , Choreographie Zeiterfassung)
viewers think the “public embarrassment is times on TikTok. distract sb.
eingestempelt sein,
sich in der regulären
definitely fun and cringeworthy”. People also Employers will have a hard time prevent- from sth.
Arbeitszeit befinden
like to watch others avoiding work. And the ing workers from making viral videos at work. [dI(strÄkt frQm] 
,  jmdn. von etw. spokesperson
clips show a more welcoming side to profes- Perhaps a better strategy would be to turn on ablenken [(spEUks)p§:s&n] 
sions such as law enforcement. the camera and join in the fun. , Sprecher(in)

8  Business Spotlight 4/2020 WORKING WORLD


Rebranding time-wasting EASY AUDIO

The next time you are at work, relax and perhaps it’s having some fun with col-
do nothing. No, really. In her new book, leagues and checking Instagram every
The Art of Rest, Claudia Hammond says now and then that makes your job enjoy-
that resting — rather than being busy — able, or bearable.”
makes you more productive. This is wel- When people say that they don’t have
come advice. enough time to rest at work, Hammond The key to productivity? Doing very little
Many people believe that if you aren’t has two replies: you may be overestimat-
working all the time, you aren’t working ing the amount of time you actually work, bearable guilt [gIlt] 
hard enough. Hammond thinks this is and perhaps you should accept that your [(beErEb&l]  , Schuld;
, erträglich hier: schlechtes Gewissen
nonsense. “Maybe it’s true that you waste to-do list will never get done. So, give up
some time at work chatting and you could the guilt, push your work aside and chill. chat [tSÄt]  rebrand sth.
, plaudern [)ri:(brÄnd] 
concentrate harder all day and leave work You may be surprised by how much your ,  etw. ein neues Image
a little earlier,” she writes in her book, “but work improves as a result. geben


Under the

Be less “If there is a major outbreak, it’s not just a

health problem. It can have economic, polit-

curious about ical and social impact,” Dr Tedros Adhanom

Ghebreyesus, director general of the World

people and Health Organization (WHO), told Science

magazine in December 2019. Dr Tedros had

more curious no idea then that the coronavirus had already

begun to spread in Wuhan, China.

about ideas A native of Ethiopia, he studied at the

London School of Hygiene & Tropical Med-
icine on a scholarship from the WHO. He
then earned a PhD in community health
Fotos: Halfpoint, ViewApart/; Everett Historical/; WHO

and returned to Ethiopia, where he became

Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus: health minister, then foreign minister.
is he up to the challenge? The coronavirus pandemic has put
Dr Tedros in a difficult position. He has to
containment measure funding be diplomatic without being political when
[kEn(teInmEnt [(fVndIN]  working with governments to control the
)meZE]  ,  finanzielle Mittel; spread of the disease. He was criticized for
, Eindämmungs- hier auch: Beitrags-
maßnahme zahlungen praising China for its containment measu-
res, when he knew that officials had arrest-
earn a PhD hygiene [(haIdZi:n] 
(Doctor of ,  [wg. Aussprache] ed health workers trying to raise the alarm
chemist [(kemIst] 
Polish–French Philosophy)
scholarship about the virus. In April 2020, US President
, Chemiker(in) [)§:n E )pi: eItS (di:] 
chemist and [(skQlESIp]  Donald Trump froze WHO funding.
physicist physicist , promovieren
, Stipendium The world is now relying on Dr Tedros
Marie Curie [(fIzIsIst]  Ethiopia
(1867–1934) , Physiker(in) [)i:Ti(EUpiE] 
school [sku:l]  to be a leader and voice of reason. This will
,  hier: Hochschule
,  [wg. Aussprache] doubtless be the challenge of his career.

WORKING WORLD 4/2020 Business Spotlight 9 

Good ideas
Die beiden Ideen, die wir hier vorstellen, haben eins gemeinsam:
Sie sollen unser Leben verbessern oder zumindest leichter machen.


Full marks to... Full marks to...

Full marks to… [)fUl (mA:ks tu]  Full marks to… [)fUl (mA:ks tu] 
...Foxes Academy, ,  Die Bestnote ...Don’t Worry Village, ,  Die Bestnote
erhält ... erhält ...
for helping people with learning disabilities for providing a refuge for work-weary South
beam with pride cafe [(kÄfeI] 
find paid employment. Koreans.
[)bi:m wID (praId]  ,  [wg. Aussprache]
In the UK, 1.5 million adults live with ,  vor Stolz platzen “It was my life, but I couldn’t find me in
a learning disability. Only six per cent of disabled it,” Kim Ri-Oh told BBC Worklife. Despite [(faUndE] 
them are employed. Foxes Academy hopes [dIs(eIb&ld]  doing “everything asked” of her, Kim felt as ,  Gründer(in)
to change this. Its three-year course aims to , behindert if it was never enough. indulge in sth.
prepare young people with learning disabil- environment South Korea has one of the most demand- [In(dVldZ In] 
[In(vaI&rEnmEnt]  ,  sich etw. gönnen
ities for a career in the hospitality industry. ing work cultures of any country in the
,  hier: Atmosphäre
The course also teaches them how to live in- world, even after the government cut the millennial
graduate [mI(leniEl] 
dependently. [(grÄdZuEt]  maximum working hours from 68 hours to ,  Mitglied der
The programme benefits more than just ,  Absolvent(in) 52 hours per week in 2018. Some South Ko- Generation Y (in den
the students. Steve Cassidy is managing di- rean millennials are pushing back against 1980/1990er Jahren
hospitality industry
rector in Britain and Ireland for Hilton, a hos- [)hQspI(tÄlEti the culture’s unrealistic expectations of what
)IndEstri]  refuge
pitality company. His company has offered 21 makes professional and social success.
,  Hotel- und Gast- [(refju:dZ]  

Fotos: bamlou, lisegagne/; picture-alliance/Reuters; Don’t Worry Village

work placements and hired nine graduates stättengewerbe “Don’t Worry Village” is a governmen- , Zufluchts-,
from Foxes Academy. He told The Economist learning disability tal project set up to encourage community Rückzugsort
that the programme has been good for the [(l§:nIN building. Its motto is “It’s okay to rest. It’s repurpose sth.
“culture and environment” of Hilton’s hotels. dIsE)bIlEti]  okay to fail”. The village has repurposed un- [)ri:(p§:pEs] 
, Lernbehinderung ,  etw. einem neuen
Governments also gain from the pro- used buildings in the city of Mokpo, turning Zweck zuführen
managing director
gramme. Most disabled adults don’t have the them into cafes and creative spaces.
[)mÄnIdZIN weary
means to live independently, so they spend dE(rektE]  The project’s founders, Park Myung-Ho [(wIEri] 
their entire lives in residential care paid by , Geschäfts- and Hong Dong-Woo, want young people to , erschöpft,
führer(in) abgekämpft
the government. If they could support them- find sohwakhaeng, or happiness in small, per-
selves, it would save the government a lot of residential care sonal joys. “Younger Koreans are searching
[rezI)denS&l (keE] 
money. , Heimbetreuung for sohwakhaeng,” said Park. “Whether that
One look at pictures on the Foxes Acade- be indulging in a slice of cheesecake at your
work placement
my’s website makes it clear who gets the most [(w§:k )pleIsmEnt]  local bakery, writing a song or a book.”
out of the programme, however: the young , Berufspraktikum For Kim Ri-Oh, the village is now not only
people whose faces are beaming with pride. her refuge but also her employer.

10  Business Spotlight 4/2020 WORKING WORLD

over 45
People who have cognitive conditions such as autism, attention

basically die
deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or dyslexia are said to be
“neurodiverse”: “Companies are realizing that neurodiverse peo-

in terms of
ple can bring special skills and new perspectives to the workplace.”

new ideas
black swan event
A “black swan event” is extremely rare, cannot be predicted and
has serious, widespread consequences. After the event, people
will insist that it could have been predicted. The term was coined
by Lebanese-American statistician Nassim Nicholas Taleb in his
book The Black Swan, which came out in 2007: “Government leaders
are calling the coronavirus a black swan event.”

coin sth. [kOIn]  disorder dyslexia [dIs(leksiE]  Indian-American

,  etw. prägen [dIs(O:dE]  ,  Dyslexie (Lese-Recht- tech investor
, Störung schreib-Schwäche) Vinod Khosla, 65
condition [kEn(dIS&n] 
,  hier: Störung, predict sth. [pri(dIkt] 
Beeinträchtigung ,  etw. prognostizieren in terms of... [)In (t§:mz Qv] 
,  was ... betrifft, in puncto ...


325 million
22 richest men The 22 richest men in the world have more wealth
than all 325 million women living in Africa. African
women do nearly all care work, without pay. This
kind of work is vastly undervalued by businesses
and governments. The monetary value of unpaid
care work done by women and girls globally is es-
timated conservatively to be at least $10.8 trillion
(€10 trillion) each year, more than three times the
size of the world’s tech industry.

care work [(keE w§:k] 

,  Pflege-, Versorgungs-
arbeit Sources: The Guardian; Oxfam (www.
trillion [(trIljEn]  richest-men-world-have-more-wealth-
, Billion(en) all-women-africa)

WORKING WORLD 4/2020 Business Spotlight 11 

UP and
Intelligence tests are regularly adjusted so that the average
person has an IQ (intelligence quotient) of 100. Since 1910,
the global IQ has risen about three points per decade, a phe-
nomenon called the “Flynn effect”, named after US intelli-
gence researcher James R. Flynn. This means that a person
who scores 100 on an IQ test today would have got a score
of 130 if they had taken the test in 1910 — higher than 98 per
cent of the population back then.
Source: Our World in Data (
Criminal law:
the wig isn’t
the worst part adjust sth. [E(dZVst]  researcher [ri(s§:tSE] , Forscher(in)
,  etw. anpassen, korrigieren
score (sth.) [skO:] 
decade [(dekeId] , Jahrzehnt ,  Punktzahl; etw. (Punkte) erzielen

The inside story

Mindfulness is now used to improve many aspects of daily
life, including how people work. It is also used to improve
the quality of life for people who are suffering. Scientists
have found that negative emotions and feelings of phys-
Memoirs written by ordinary people with extraordinary pro- ical pain decreased in patients who had only a 20-minute
fessional lives — doctors, barristers, prison officers, nurses, introduction to mindfulness. These results show that it
midwives — have been climbing the bestseller lists. This marks doesn’t take a Zen master to benefit from the technique.
a change from a generation ago, when workers in such fields Sources: Psychology Today; “Let It Be: Mindful Acceptance Down-regulates
were expected to be strong and silent. Pain and Negative Emotion” (
In the books, the writers show “their own humanity — their
mindfulness [(maIndf&lnEs]  technique [tek(ni:k] 
fears, their weaknesses, their vulnerabilities — doing a job which , Achtsamkeit ,  [wg. Aussprache]
brings them into contact with the extremes of life,” Sarah Lang-
ford, a British criminal and family barrister and author of In Your
Defence told the Financial Times. She says the memoirs give “more
than an insight into a job — they explore how it feels to do the

Such books can help young people form a more realistic
picture of what to expect from these jobs. Dr Adam Kay, for
example, wrote This Is Going to Hurt about his years as a junior
obstetrician in the UK’s National Health Service (NHS). He
has since received emails from angry parents complaining that
their children decided against studying medicine after reading
his book. “Good!” replies Dr Kay. “It’s a job you have to do with
your eyes open. Medical schools are not honest about the bad Stanford University’s “Design Thinking Bootcamp” is the
days. It’s deeply important to know what the job is. I didn’t.” new CV must-have for those who hope to become execu-
tives and those who already are. The four-day workshop
costs $13,000 (€12,000).
barrister memoir [(memwA:]  school
[(bÄrIstE] UK  , Memoir(en) [sku:l] 
Source: Stanford Graduate School of Business (
, Rechtsanwalt/-anwältin ,  hier: Fakultät
midwife [(mIdwaIf] 
(bei Gericht)
, Hebamme vulnerability
insight [(InsaIt]  [)vVlnErE(bIlEti]  boot camp [(bu:t kÄmp] design thinking executive
National Health Service
, Einblick , Verwundbarkeit US , militärische [di(zaIn )TINkIN]  [Ig(zekjUtIv] 
Grundausbildung; ,  etwa: kognitive, , Führungskraft
junior obstetrician [)nÄS&nEl (helT )s§:vIs] 
hier: Trainingsakademie strategische und
[)dZu:niE )QbstE(trIS&n] ,  staatlicher britischer
UK  ,  Assistenzarzt/ Gesundheitsdienst CV (curriculum vitae)
Prozesse der
-ärztin für Geburtshilfe [)si: (vi:] , Lebenslauf

12  Business Spotlight 4/2020 WORKING WORLD

Ihre Milliarden ermöglichen wertvolle
Forschungs- und Sozialprojekte.
DEBORAH CAPRAS vergleicht zwei der
reichsten Stiftungen der Welt.



WHAT IS IT? The world’s wealthiest

private philanthropic organiza-
(€50 billion)
(€30.4 billion)
WHAT IS IT? The UK’s wealthiest
charity and largest provider of
non-government funding for
Total amount in grants given Total investment portfolio. scientific research
over the past 20 years In 2017–18, £640 million (€726
HISTORY Bill and Melinda Gates
million) was awarded in grants.
started their foundation after HISTORY In his will, Sir Henry
reading a 1998 newspaper article. Wellcome (1853–1936), an
The tech billionaires learned
that just one disease, rotavirus,
caused more than 400,000
(€33 billion)
(€3.7 million)
American-born pharmaceutical
tycoon, established The Well-
come Trust, a charity funded by
childhood deaths every year. Total amount (in Microsoft Highest annual salary paid the profits of his businesses. In
shares) donated to the at the trust 1995, the trust sold all interests
HEADQUARTERS Seattle, foundation by in pharmaceuticals to Glaxo.
Bill and Melinda Gates
RESEARCH FOCUS Public health and
education in the US. Fighting
malaria, polio and HIV across the
Number of employees
Number of employees


globe. Better sanitation world- research, genomics and neuro-
Fotos: James Hoathly/Alamy Stock Photo; Frederic Legrand-COMEO/; Lafayette Ltd/Wellcome Trust

wide. Clean energy


Total number of countries with
Percentage of funding to
science. Research into how to
prevent or fight global health
crises, such as the coronavirus.
more life-saving vaccines for grant recipients organizations outside the UK
children in the world’s poorest (excluding the US) (in 97 countries) ONE KEY INITIATIVE Supports
countries. Major provider of research into treatments and
funding for Gavi, The Vaccine
Alliance — a public-private
global health partnership
Number of children given
(€46.5 million)
vaccines to stop the Ebola virus.


vaccines via GAVI Funding provided for Ebola extraordinary improvements
GUIDING BELIEF “Every life has research since 2014 in human and animal health by
equal value” supporting the brightest minds”


Twitter followers
Twitter followers

(@gatesfoundation) (@wellcometrust)
billion [(bIljEn]  donate sth. [dEU(neIt]  funding [(fVndIN]  headquarters recipient [ri(sIpiEnt]  trust [trVst] 
, Milliarde(n) ,  etw. spenden ,  hier: finanzielle Mittel [)hed(kwO:tEz]  , Empfänger(in) , Stiftung
, Sitz
billionaire [)bIljE(neE]  foundation [faUn(deIS&n]  genomics [dZi(nEUmIks]  research [ri(s§:tS]  vaccine [(vÄksi:n] 
, Milliardär(in) , Stiftung ,  Genomik, Genom- pharmaceutical , Forschung , Impfung
forschung [)fA:mE(su:tIk&l] 
charity [(tSÄrEti]  fund sth. [fVnd]  share [SeE]  will [wIl] 
,  [wg. Aussprache]
,  karitative Organisation ,  etw. finanzieren grant [grA:nt]  , Aktie , Testament
,  Zuschuss, Förderung

WORKING WORLD 4/2020 Business Spotlight 13 


Schon vor der MeToo-Bewegung schrieb Susan Fowler
in ihrem Blog über die Belästigungen, denen sie bei
Uber ausgesetzt war. Nun hat sie ein Buch über ihre
Erfahrungen geschrieben und hofft, damit anderen Frauen
bei sexuellen Übergriffen am Arbeitsplatz zu helfen.
AMELIA TAIT berichtet.

n February 2017, Susan Fowler was thrown into the pub-
lic eye. She had written a blog post exposing the sexism
she experienced working as a software engineer at Uber,
a ride-hailing company based in San Francisco. And in her
new book, Whistleblower, she explains how she came to
shake up one of the world’s most valuable start-ups.
Despite the title of her book, however, Fowler can’t be
described by one word alone. She is a musician, a writer, a
physicist and a philosopher: a person who wants to be seen,
she has written, as more than “that woman who was sexually
Fotos: Rita Quinn/Getty Images

Driving her point home expose sth. ride-hailing

[)draIvIN h§: )pOInt [Ik(spEUz]  [(raId )heI&lIN] 
(hEUm]  ,  etw. offenlegen, ,  Mitfahrgelegenheit auf
,  hier etwa: Damit ist enthüllen Anforderung
alles klar
harass sb. shake sth. up [)SeIk (Vp] 
(drive one’s point home 
Fotos: XX

[(hÄrEs]  ,  etw. in seinen Grund-

,  etw. mit Nachdruck
,  jmdn. belästigen festen erschüttern

14  Business Spotlight 4/2020 GLOBAL BUSINESS

“It was clear that he
was trying to get me to
have sex with him”
Fotos: XX


GLOBAL BUSINESS 4/2020 Business Spotlight 15 

Inspiring the Me Too movement
That was just the beginning of the sex-
ism Fowler would face there. Over the
course of her year at Uber, she was given
negative performance reviews by anoth-
er boss. He wanted to stop her from be-
ing promoted so that he could keep her
and other women on his team. Fowler
was also told that she was “the common
theme” in all the reports she had made to
HR about sexist comments that had been
made to her. In one strange incident, 120
male engineers were rewarded with offi-
cial leather jackets, while the six female
engineers were told that jackets for them
were too expensive.
Fowler’s blog post was explosive. It
was shared thousands of times on Twit-
ter alone, and Fowler recalls going to a
bookshop a few hours after posting and
overhearing two people “arguing about
whether I was telling the truth”. A day
after the post, former US attorney gen-
eral Eric Holder was hired to organize an
Fowler’s book: independent review of Uber’s working
giving companies
a wake-up call environment; the investigation was to
and a warning be overseen by Uber’s chief HR officer
and Arianna Huffington, a US business­
Six million people read Fowler’s blog post, in which she talked Fowler’s post inspired the tech indus-
about her time at what was then the number-one disrupter in try’s Me Too movement half a year before
Silicon Valley. In the post — titled “Reflecting on One Very, Very the #MeToo hashtag even existed. Other
Strange Year at Uber” — Fowler explained how she was hassled women began to come forward with sto-
by her new boss on her first official day at the company. ries of sexism in Silicon Valley. Dave Mc-
“He was in an open relationship, he said, and his girlfriend Clure, CEO of 500 Startups, a business
was having an easy time finding new partners but he wasn’t,” accelerator, resigned in the summer of
Fowler recalled him saying. “It was clear that he was trying to 2017 and wrote a blog post called “I’m a
get me to have sex with him.” Fowler immediately reported the Creep. I’m Sorry” after The New York Times
conversation to HR. The manager was not punished because he reported he had sent sexually inappro-
was a “high performer”. priate messages to a potential employee.
In December 2017, Fowler and four oth-
er women (among them Taylor Swift)
argue about sth. creep [kri:p] ifml.  hassle sb. [(hÄs&l] ifml. 
[(A:gju: E)baUt]  , Widerling ,  jmdn. bedrängen were chosen as Time magazine’s people
,  über etw. debattieren
deaf: fall on ~ ears incident [(InsIdEnt] 
of the year. They were called the “silence
attorney general [def]  , Begebenheit breakers”.
[E)t§:ni (dZen&rEl] US  ,  auf taube Ohren stoßen “I have no idea,” Fowler says when I
overhear sth.
, Justizminister(in)
disrupter [)EUvE(hIE]  ask why her post gained such attention.
bullying [(bUliIN]  [dIs(rVptE]  ,  zufällig etw. hören
“At the time, no information I had told me
,  Mobbing, Schikanieren , Störer(in);
performance review that my story would be treated different-
hier: Unternehmen, das
business accelerator [pE(fO:mEns ri)vju:] 
[)bIznEs Ek(selEreItE] 
eine Branche aufrüttelt
, Mitarbeiterbeurteilung
ly from anyone else’s.” Fowler had spent a
,  Person, die einem Start- face sth. [feIs]  year at Uber trying to get the company to
sexually inappropriate
up zu einer schnellen ,  etw. gegenüberstehen; care about the sexism and bullying taking
Entwicklung verhilft  hier auch: erleben
)InE(prEUpriEt]  place there — her complaints had always
, anzüglich
,  Beschleuniger) fallen on deaf ears. “I was speaking the

16  Business Spotlight 4/2020 GLOBAL BUSINESS

truth in a system that doesn’t value the truth, but as soon as you Information, a US-based digital media company, Pham was al-
go out of it, then speaking the truth actually has an impact. It lowed to keep his job after sharing evidence with Holder that
turns out a lot of people care... Not everybody is interested in ig- proved he had taken Fowler’s case seriously after their meeting.
noring bad behaviour. I learned I had to go outside the system.” When asked how she feels about the fact that Pham is still em-
ployed by Uber, Fowler is diplomatic. “What I do hope is things
Exposing the scale of the problem have changed, and that what happened to me won’t happen
In truth, it is likely that the response to Fowler’s post was con- to anyone else again,” she says. Most of Fowler’s friends have
nected to a wider backlash against Uber that was happening at now left Uber, and she says she has no idea how it is run today.
the time. A month before Fowler wrote her blog “I hope that things are getting better — it’s been
post, Uber had agreed to pay $20 million (€18.2 three years!” she laughs.
million) to the US government after the Fed- When she wrote her blog post, she was work-
eral Trade Commission accused the company
“I was speaking the ing at another start-up, Stripe, but just over a year
of misleading drivers about potential earnings. truth in a system and a half later, she joined The New York Times as a
Six months before that, the press had begun to that doesn’t value technology editor. She sounds very happy when
uncover sexual harassment by Uber drivers. the truth” she speaks of her career in journalism and seems
After a BuzzFeed News investigation, Uber pleased to feel as if she is “outside” the tech indus-
admitted there had been 170 customer reports try now. At the end of Whistleblower, she describes
(by English-speaking users) with a “legitimate claim of sexual her new priorities: writing, learning languages, reading Go, Dog.
assault” between December 2012 and August 2015. And a Free- Go! to her small daughter.
dom of Information request by the The Sun newspaper in Brit-
ain found that 32 London drivers had been accused of assault Inspired by Plato
between 2015 and 2016. “It was hard to revisit,” she says of writing Whistleblower. “These
Holder’s investigation into Uber concluded that the com- were some of the most extreme and painful experiences of my
pany’s culture was dysfunctional and advised improved HR life.” It’s no wonder that Fowler is so happy to have moved on
training and better complaint tracking procedures. Holder also — after her blog post exploded, private investigators began pry-
recommended that Uber “review and reallocate the responsibili- ing into her personal life, trying to discredit her. Strangers would
ties of Travis Kalanick”, Uber’s CEO at the time. Kalanick had re- ring her family and friends and ask questions about her past;
portedly known about sexual harassment allegations within the rumours spread that Uber competitor Lyft had paid her to write
company and had failed to act. He had a reputation himself for her post; men followed her on foot and in cars. “It was terrifying
inappropriate behaviour. On 21 June 2017, he resigned as CEO. because I didn’t know what they were looking for or what their
On her first day at “Uberversity” — Uber’s three-day-long goal was, or what they wanted to do with the information,” she
training programme for new employees — Fowler and her class says. “It was very, very scary.”
were told that they weren’t allowed to date “TK”. The instructor
told the confused participants “that she knew all of us wanted
to date TK, but it was, she said with a sigh, against the rules”. It allegation escalate sth. [(eskEleIt]  pry into sth.
[)ÄlE(geIS&n]  ,  etw. (an eine höhere [)praI (Intu] 
wasn’t until later that Fowler realized TK was Kalanick. , Anschuldigung Stelle) weiterleiten ,  in etw. herumschnüffeln
To what extent does Fowler believe Kalanick’s resignation
assault [E(sO:lt]  evidence [(evIdEns]  reallocate sth.
solved the problems at Uber? While she believes a culture of , Übergriff(e) , Beleg(e) [)ri:(ÄlEUkeIt] 
workplace bullying came from the top, she also describes the backlash [(bÄklÄS]  Federal Trade Commission
,  etw. neu zuweisen

company’s problems as “systemic”. When Fowler joined Uber, ,  Gegenreaktion, -schlag [)fedErEl (treId review sth. [ri(vju:] 
25 per cent of its engineers were women — by the time she left, kE)mIS&n] US , Bundes- ,  etw. überprüfen
conclude that...
they made up just six per cent. [kEn(klu:d DÄt]  revisit sth. [)ri:(vIzIt] 
,  zu dem Schluss kommen, fix sth. [fIks]  ,  hier: sich wieder mit
“At Uber, every time something happened, I would escalate
dass ... ,  etw. beheben einem Thema befassen
it, and [it] eventually got to the point where I was sitting across
CTO (chief technology Freedom of Information rumour [(ru:mE] 
from the CTO and telling him everything that was going on. He officer) [)si: ti: (EU]  request [)fri:dEm Ev , Gerücht
promised to fix it and promised to take it seriously, just like all , Technische(r) InfE(meIS&n ri)kwest] 
scale [skeI&l] 
the HR people before,” Fowler says. “And then he sent someone Direktor(in) ,  Anfrage nach dem
,  Ausmaß, Größen-
US-Gesetz zur Wahrung
from HR to speak to me, and it was the same thing: this is their discredit sb. [dIs(kredIt] 
des Rechts auf Auskunft
,  jmdn. in Misskredit
first offence, they’re a high performer, we don’t feel comfortable scary [(skeEri] ifml. 
bringen, verunglimpfen investigator
punishing them, we’ve given them a stern warning. I remem- , beängstigend
ber thinking: this isn’t just one manager; this is every HR person [dIs(fVNkS&nEl] 
, Ermittler(in), stern [st§:n] 
Detektiv(in) ,  streng, strikt
here and everyone up my management chain… I had to leave.” , gestört
That chief technology officer was Thuan Pham, who is offence [E(fens]  tracking [(trÄkIN] 
editor [(edItE] 
, Vergehen , (Rück-)Verfolgung
still Uber’s CTO today. According to an investigation by The , Redakteur(in)

GLOBAL BUSINESS 4/2020 Business Spotlight 17 

Yet despite these experiences, Fowler wants readers to re- is common.) Uber isn’t even the first
member her not as “the woman who was harassed at Uber” but start-up where Fowler faced discrimina-
rather as “the woman who stood up and spoke out about harass- tion. After university, she was hired by the
ment at Uber”. Less the story of how Fowler became a victim, financial services company Plaid, where
Whistleblower is more of a guide to how she became a hero. she learned that her male colleagues
During our conversation, she is most animated when she were being paid $50,000 (€45,600) per
talks about the philosophers she read as a teen who informed year more than she was. After that, she
her moral code — Plato, Epictetus, Isaiah Berlin. “I did not have worked at software company PubNub,
control over my circumstances, but I did have control over my where her boss made horrific statements
character, the decisions I made, the actions I took, and the things that led Fowler to believe he “truly, deeply,
that I said. And that was so important for me.” passionately hated women”.
Fowler’s determination to blow the whistle on Uber had its All in all, it paints a depressing picture
roots in an incident in her past when she felt she had “very much “This isn’t of life as a female engineer. Fowler says
been morally obligated to speak out and didn’t”. just one she “realized I really wasn’t welcome in
“It’s amazing to me how everything that happened in my life those environments”, but she also says
then was preparing me for this moment,” Fowler says today. “I
manager; she doesn’t want to discourage other
learned all these big lessons, so when the time came to blow the this is women from entering the field. “I don’t
whistle on Uber, I was ready.” By the time she worked at Uber, everyone want to discourage any young women
Fowler says, it was “second nature” to screenshot, report and for- up my from following their dreams. I think the
ward any “weird” interactions, as well as save this evidence to best thing they can do is understand what
the cloud and print out hard copies. She says her book is a way to
management their rights are and stand up for them-
share those lessons with others. “The most powerful thing you chain” selves and advocate for themselves, and
can do is tell the truth, and the most powerful way you can tell then when things start to go wrong just
the truth is with all this documentation. Then nobody can say it’s speak out. The more of us who speak out,
a ‘he says, she says’ situation because look, I have the evidence.” the louder our voices will be, until they
Fowler’s telling of her time at Uber is very personal. She just can’t be ignored.”
doesn’t talk about the Me Too movement or write much about Fowler’s book ends with her riding
accusations of sexual assault by Uber drivers. Her story is very in a Lyft — Uber’s rival in the US. Is it a
much her own — she tells about living in poverty, falling in love final “fuck you” to Uber? “They’re the
with the violin, getting her first job at Spider Pharm at the age only ones who will drive me around!” she
of 11 and homeschooling herself. She paints a picture of an in- laughs. “Uber banned me, so I can’t sign
dependent and determined person: as a university student, she up. I tried signing up, and it said they can’t
would fall asleep immersed in her textbooks, excited to teach complete my registration, and I’m like,
herself the science and maths she needed to keep up. ‘Yeah, I wonder why!’”
She also admits to things that private investigators would
no doubt have loved to expose — after her father died of brain
cancer when she was a student, she checked herself into a men- AMELIA TAIT
tal health facility. “I almost didn’t include that … but I realized I is a freelance features writer who re-
ports on technology and the internet.
didn’t want people who’d been through something similar to
© Guardian News & Media 2020
think they couldn’t speak up, too,” she says. Her book is a way
to provide a “fuller picture” than a magazine cover, she adds, to
show that you don’t have to be the perfect victim to blow the advocate for sb./sth. fuck you release sth. [ri(li:s] 
whistle. “I want to encourage people to speak up no matter what, [(ÄdvEkeIt fO:]  [(fVk ju:] vulg.  ,  etw. veröffentlichen
,  für jmdn./etw. eintreten ,  fick dich (vulg.),
and the best way for me to do that is to be open about my life.” second nature: be ~ (to
du kannst mich mal
amazing [E(meIzIN] ifml.  sb.) [)sekEnd (neItSE] 
, unglaublich hard copy [)hA:d (kQpi]  ,  (jmdm.) zur zweiten
Women should follow their dreams , (Papier-)Ausdruck Natur geworden sein,
Can we really expect individual women to find solutions to the animated [(ÄnImeItId] 
in Fleisch und Blut über-
, lebhaft horrific [hQ(rIfIk] 
problem of systemic harassment? It’s one thing to inspire wom- gegangen sein
, entsetzlich
blow the whistle on sb./
en to speak out, quite another to persuade them to try to change sign up [)saIn (Vp] 
sth. [)blEU DE (wIs&l Qn]  I’m like... [(aIm laIk] ifml. 
,  sich registrieren
the conditions in which harassment happens. “I know, that’s the ,  mit Insider-Informa- ,  ich sage...
paradox, right?” she says. “That’s the painful part … because we tionen über jmdn./etw. speak out about sth.
immersed [I(m§:st] 
auspacken  [)spi:k (aUt E)baUt] 
know it’s very scary, and we know what happens to women who (whistle  ,  Trillerpfeife)
,  (tief) versunken
,  sich zu etw. äußern,
speak out.” In the end, though, she says: “You have to do what’s keep up [)ki:p (Vp]  über etw. öffentlich den
right for you — in myself, I felt a deep moral obligation.” ,  hier: sein Studium Mund aufmachen
No one can be sure meaningful changes have occurred in ,  Umstände, Situation uncanny [Vn(kÄni] 
mental health facility , unheimlich
Silicon Valley in the three years since Fowler’s blog post. (Un- Epictetus
[)ment&l (helT fE)sIlEti] 
canny Valley, a book by Anna Wiener, was released in January [)epIk(ti:tEs]  weird [wIEd] ifml. 
, psychiatrische
, Epiktet , merkwürdig
2020. It also describes an industry in which sexual harassment Einrichtung

18  Business Spotlight 4/2020 GLOBAL BUSINESS


Blow the whistle

Wer Verfehlungen anderer am
Arbeitsplatz aufdecken möchte,
muss vorsichtig sein, um die eigene
Karriere nicht zu gefährden.
wie Sie am besten vorgehen.

changing lives
by speaking up

he decision to expose wrongdoing anonymous, says Stephen Kohn, a law­ Build a team
in the workplace is not an easy yer and author of The New Whistleblower’s Does anyone else share your concerns?
one to make. Whistleblowers can Handbook. Many companies have special Will they also speak up? “Find others
change the world for the better, hotlines that can protect your identity. who agree with your assessment and
but blowing the whistle on bad And there are also laws in many countries report together,” says Sherron Watkins,
behaviour can also destroy your to protect your anonymity. Whatever you the executive who helped uncover fraud
career for good. We look here at do, don’t break any laws, writes Kohn in at Enron, the US energy trading company
how to do it without risking everything. his book. You don’t want to go to jail — or that collapsed in 2001. “There is strength
get fired. in numbers,” she told MarketWatch.
Get legal help
The top tip from The National Whis­ Get emotional support assessment [E(sesmEnt]  fraud [frO:d] 
tleblower Center is “learn about your Whatever option you take, find someone , Einschätzung , Betrug
rights”. Especially in the case of serious who can give you emotional support. avenue [(ÄvEnju:]  for good [fE (gUd] 
wrongdoing, get professional advice from “When you are a whistleblower, you feel , Weg; hier auch: Hand- ,  endgültig, für immer
someone outside your company, ideally incredibly alone,” warns Helen Evans in lungsoption
higher-up [)haIEr (Vp]
a lawyer with expert knowledge of your an interview with Protect, a UK organi­ blow the whistle on sb./ ifml. ,  Person in einer
sth. [)blEU DE (wIs&l Qn]  höheren Position
industry and location. zation that supports whistleblowers. In ,  über jmdn./etw.
2018, Evans helped expose systemic sex­ incredibly [In(kredEbli] 
, unglaublich
Consider all the options ual abuse across Oxfam, a UK charity that (whistle  , Trillerpfeife)
Look at less risky options first, Jon Tycko, provides aid in crisis zones. She describes charity [(tSÄrEti] 
,  karitative Organisation
a lawyer at the US firm Tycko and Zav­ her decision to speak up as the hardest of , Auswirkung
areei, told Lifehacker. If possible, try to her life. diary [(daIEri] 
retaliation [ri)tÄli(eIS&n] 
,  Tage-, Notizbuch
solve the problem internally, he says: “Ask , Vergeltung(smaßnahme)
yourself: is there some avenue within the Document everything executive [Ig(zekjUtIv] 
speak up [)spi:k (Vp] 
Illustration: danijelala/

, Führungskraft
company for me to bring this wrongdoing Be absolutely clear about what you be­ ,  lauter sprechen; hier:
expose sth. [Ik(spEUz]  den Mund aufmachen
to the attention of higher-ups?” lieve is wrongdoing. “Focus on the who,
,  etw. enthüllen
what, where and when,” advises Protect wrongdoing [(rQN)du:IN] 
firm [f§:m] ,  hier: Kanzlei , Verfehlung(en)
Reduce the risks on its website. It’s also important to doc­
Protect yourself and your family from re­ ument what happens after you’ve spoken For more career trends, go to
percussions and retaliation by remaining up. Keep a diary.

GLOBAL BUSINESS 4/2020 Business Spotlight 19 


“I have worried
about everything from
dairy cows to addictive
Für unsere Kolumnistin ist es an der Zeit, Abschied
zu nehmen. Lesen Sie hier einen kleinen Rückblick
auf die letzten sechseinhalb Jahre.

his is my last column for Business ELISABETH RIBBANS American professor. At the age of 94, he was still working full-
Spotlight, and I hate to say good- is a British time as an academic at the University of Texas in Austin. Al-
bye. Over the past six-and-a-half journalist and though he had recently told a BBC interviewer that he did not
years, I have written about some consultant.
worry much about prizes, I felt that he absolutely deserved a call
of my biggest business heroes from Stockholm. His work had helped enable the mobile tech-
and villains, pet peeves and pet ➳ nology that has transformed our lives.
passions. Contact: eribbans@ Then the call came, making Professor Goodenough — who
In this column, I have worried will be 98 in July — the oldest person ever to receive a Nobel
about everything from dairy cows to ad- Prize. It was a delight to watch a livestream of the ceremony in
dictive technology. I have been excited December 2019 as the King of Sweden presented him and two
about green cars and London wines. In fellow chemists from the UK and Japan with their award.
one of my first columns, I got angry about One word that has never appeared in this column is Brexit.
new architecture and, recently, I shared This was largely for practical reasons: the situation in the UK
my fascination in the decline of old- over the past four years has been so uncertain that any reference
fashioned cash. to it was in danger of becoming outdated between leaving my
Along the way, some of my views have laptop and appearing in this magazine. Now that Brexit is cer-
shifted. In 2014, my column about the tain, I must say that I was hoping — as with John Goodenough’s
work of space pioneer Elon Musk sound- Nobel Prize — for a late miracle.
ed almost like fan mail, but, less than five It did not come, and I do not wish to add to this year’s many
years later, I found the idea of trips around “goodbyes” from Britain. So, to the readers and staff of Business
the moon “increasingly distasteful”. Spotlight, I choose to end my final column with herzlichen Dank
Sometimes, readers have also been und auf Wiedersehen.
Fotos: by-studio, GlobalIP, Rawf8, Customdesigner/; privat

kind enough to write back to me, and I

thank those of you who have done so.
In offering opinion pieces, there is al-
addictive fellow pet peeve
ways the hope that something you think [E(dIktIv]  [(felEU]  [)pet (pi:v] ifml. 
should change, will change. Mostly, of ,  süchtig machend , Kollege/Kollegin; , (persönliches)
course, one is disappointed. So, I could hier: Mit- Lieblingsärgernis
dairy cow
(pet  ,  Haustier; Liebling)
not have been more delighted when, [(deEri kaU]  lithium-ion battery
in 2019, the Nobel Prize in Chemistry , Milchkuh [)lITiEm )aIEn (bÄtri]  rechargeable
,  [wg. Aussprache] [ri:(tSA:dZEb&l] 
was awarded to John Goodenough for decline [di(klaIn] 
, wiederaufladbar
, Niedergang; hier miracle
his role in developing the rechargeable auch: Verschwinden [(mIrEk&l]  shift [SIft] 
lithium-ion battery. , Wunder ,  hier: sich verlagern
Two years earlier, I had written a [dIs(teIstf&l]  villain [(vIlEn] 
column in praise of the German-born ,  geschmacklos , Bösewicht

20  Business Spotlight 4/2020 VIEWPOINT



Jetzt zwei Ausgaben gratis sichern unter:
040-55 55 3810 (Bestellnr.: 1920345)

Clear and swift:

response to the
coronavirus crisis


Wer in einem Land als Reaktion auf die Corona-Pandemie Maßnahmen
Foto: picture-alliance/dpa/Peter Kneffel

ergreift und wie diese umgesetzt und akzeptiert werden, hängt entscheidend
von den gemeinsamen kulturellen Werten der jeweiligen Gesellschaft ab.
PETER FRANKLIN hat sich mit diesen Aspekten befasst.

22  Business Spotlight 4/2020 INTERCULTURAL COMMUNICATION

had been invited to give a lecture at a conference relationship between subordinate and superior, and
at a French university and was looking forward not least fear of the consequences of not acting in
to the trip. But as the coronavirus crisis deep- accordance with the will of the superior, mean that
ened, I was not surprised to receive an email orders to take action may be obeyed with sometimes
apologetically cancelling the event. The organ- brutal efficiency.
izers were sorry, the email read, to inform me The action may also be effective as long as — and
that the conference had been cancelled follow- that is a huge caveat — the superior has taken the
ing “President Macron’s statement on closing all “right” decision. (Note that President Xi did not visit
French universities from Monday”. Wuhan until the lockdown there and in Hubei Prov-
The cancellation in itself was not surprising. What ince was seen to be bringing results.) In such coun-
surprised me as a relatively unhierarchical Brit was PROFESSOR tries and organizational cultures, people with less
the reference to France’s head of state as the source power expect and accept that power is distributed
teaches and re-
of the closure decision. searches into unequally. Questioning the “rightness” of a decision
The email I received announcing the closure of my intercultural made by the powerful is not the job of a subordinate.
university in Konstanz, Germany, referred to a deci- communication and So, for the doctors who apparently raised the alarm
sion made not by the central government in Berlin, in Wuhan in December 2019, there was little alter-
management at Kon-
let alone one taken by Angela Merkel. The decision stanz University of native to complying with the initial cover-up of the
was communicated to me by the president of my uni- Applied Sciences. epidemic ordered by local officials. Fear of the conse-
versity as one made by a ministry at the federal-state Since 2004, he has quences of disobedience clearly also reinforces com-
coached countless
level in Stuttgart. There was no mention of the min- intercultural
pliance in authoritarian societies and organizations.
ister president of the state of Baden-Württemberg managers. He is
or even of the minister responsible. Anything else co-author, with Cultural preferences
Jeremy Comfort, of
would have been strange — just as strange as the ref- Why is the culture, the group, the organization pre-
The Mindful Inter-
erence to President Macron was to me. national Manager pared to accept the consequences of such undemo-
(Kogan Page) and cratic, authoritarian action? Another cultural prefer-
Who has the say? co-editor, with ence may come into play here. What does a cultural
Christoph Barmeyer,
All societies, all companies, indeed all groups and of Intercultural
group value more? That its members are independent
teams, are confronted implicitly with the question Management (Pal- individuals who largely look after themselves and their
of what to do with the power available and necessary grave Macmillan), nearest and dearest? Or that individuals are interde-
a collection of
to take decisions and get things done. Does a culture pendent group members who look after each other un-
case studies.
prefer to concentrate decision-making power in the der the influence of a strong leader? When the group
hands of the few at the top? Or does it prefer to share is valued more highly than the individual, the free-
power and influence with the many located further doms of the individual become less important and
down a flatter pyramid? Is power exercised top- the security of the group more significant. Loyalty
down, or is it devolved to lower levels? to the group and conformity to the strong leader’s
China’s draconian measures to enforce a repres- decisions and wishes for the group ensure protec-
sive lockdown in Wuhan and elsewhere in China — tion of the individual group members. Repressive
where President Xi and his closest colleagues have lockdown is therefore more readily tolerated for the
far-reaching powers to take and implement decisions greater good of the group.
affecting all areas of Chinese life — seemingly proved For these reasons, countries with highly individ-
to be an effective and efficient way to limit the spread ualist and relatively unhierarchical cultures, such as
of the coronavirus. The one-way, upward dependency the USA and the UK, were at first very reluctant to

affect sth. comply with sth. disobedience implicitly [Im(plIsItli]  raise an alarm reluctant: be ~ to do sth.
[E(fekt]  [kEm(plaI wID]  [)dIsE(bi:diEns]  ,  hier: indirekt [)reIz En E(lA:m]  [ri(lVktEnt] 
,  etw. betreffen ,  etw. befolgen , Ungehorsam ,  Alarm schlagen ,  etw. nur zögerlich tun
lecture: give a ~ [(lektSE] 
caveat cover-up enforce sth. [In(fO:s]  ,  einen Vortrag halten readily [(redIli]  subordinate
[(kÄviÄt]  [(kVvEr Vp]  ,  etw. durchsetzen, , bereitwillig [sE(bO:dInEt] 
let alone [)let E(lEUn] 
,  Vorbehalt, Auflage , Verschleierung vollstrecken , Untergebene(r)
,  geschweige denn reinforce sth.
compliance devolve sth. greater good: for the ~ [)ri:In(fO:s]  unhierarchical
[kEm(plaIEns]  [di(vQlv]  [)greItE (gUd]  ,  etw. verstärken [)VnhaI&(rA:kIk&l] 
[(lQkdaUn] N. Am. 
, Regelbefolgung ,  etw. übertragen ,  zum Wohl der ,  [wg. Aussprache]
, Ausgangssperre

INTERCULTURAL COMMUNICATION 4/2020 Business Spotlight 23 

the public:
the British

impose measures prevent-
ing the individual from tak-
ing part normally in public

life. Boris Johnson’s initial
approach in the UK took
account of potential individu-

alist resistance to group-level
restrictions. He referred to
“the ancient, inalienable right

of the free-born people of the
United Kingdom to go the
pub”. This attitude and its

tone immediately brought
about scorn and incredulity,
in particular outside the UK,
and was quickly followed

CHANGING by a policy volte-face to in-

troduce legally enforceable
social-distancing measures.
to encourage people to behave in the interest of the public good.
In the face of a rapidly changing situation and grass-roots resist-
ance to a hands-off approach, experts then took centre stage at

VALUES IS This policy change was ac-

companied by a modification
of the British government’s
government press conferences and relevant laws were enacted.
But as in Hofstede’s concept of the “village market” — where
personal communication and coordination tend to complement

communication policy, which or even replace rules, processes and procedures — a British po-
increasingly emphasized how lice spokesman talked of the need to “cajole, educate” the public
the country, the group as a and the wish to police “by consent” rather than by issuing fines
whole, would benefit from as the way ahead.
restrictions on individual Societies have the potential to recognize the downside of
freedoms. The individual was not neglected, however, in the cherished values when they lead to behaviour that is obvious-
shaping of massive financial programmes to support not only ly not in the wider interest of the group. Changing established
companies but also the self-employed who would lose work as practices and behaviours in the short term is difficult enough.
a result of the restrictions. Changing the values that drive them is even harder.

From decisions to actions

This leads us to the question of how decisions are implement- ambiguity enact a law incredulity
ed once they have been taken. What degree of formalization is [)ÄmbI(gju:Eti]  [In)Äkt E (lO:]  [)InkrE(dju:lEti] 
necessary — in the absence of authoritarian leaders — to ensure , Unklarheit ,  ein Gesetz erlassen , Ungläubigkeit

that things actually get done? Countries and organizations that boss sb. around exhortation marker tape
[)bQs E(raUnd]  [)egzO:(teIS&n]  [(mA:kE teIp] 
have a need to avoid uncertainty and ambiguity will tend to take
,  jmdn. herumkomman- , Ermahnung , Markierband
a more formalized approach. Relying on expert knowledge and dieren, gängeln
fine [faIn]  mayor [meE] 
advice, they quickly create (or already have in place) laws, rules, cajole sb. ,  Geld-, Ordnungsstrafe , Bürgermeister(in)
systems and structures to regulate individual behaviour and [kE(dZEUl] 
grass-roots nanny state
achieve behavioural conformity with the decisions taken. ,  jmdn. beschwatzen;
[)grA:s (ru:ts]  [)nÄni (steIt] UK 
hier: jmdm. gut zureden
Germany — a mid-high uncertainty-avoiding society de- , fundamental , Bevormundungsstaat
scribed by the late Dutch intercultural expert Geert Hofstede as hands-off approach police sb. [pEli:s] 
Foto: picture-alliance/eEuters/Toby Melville

a “well-oiled machine” — quickly introduced social-distancing [)hÄndz (Qf E)prEUtS]  ,  jmdn. überwachen
,  geschätzt, lieb und teuer
,  Vorgehensweise der
rules. Warning signs sprang up in parks, playgrounds closed, downside Nichteinmischung
policy volte-face
[)pQlEsi )vQlt (fA:s] 
marker tape appeared at supermarket checkouts, local mayors [(daUnsaId] 
impose sth. ,  politische Kehrtwende
addressed their citizens in their weekly newsletters. Sanctions ,  negativer Aspekt
scorn [skO:n] 
were not simply threatened; it was clear they would be enforced. emphasize sth. ,  etw. verhängen
, Spott
In contrast, low uncertainty-avoiding, pragmatic Britain — inalienable
,  etw. hervorheben take account of sth.
with its dislike of experts, rules and being bossed around by the [In(eIliEnEb&l] 
[)teIk E(kaUnt Qv] 
, unveräußerlich
“nanny state” — relied initially on the exhortations of politicians ,  etw. Rechnung tragen

24  Business Spotlight 4/2020 INTERCULTURAL COMMUNICATION


Let’s talk!
is essential

Menschen unterschiedlicher Herkunft benötigen eine
Sprache, um miteinander zu kommunizieren. Das
Erlernen einer Fremdsprache ist aber längst mehr als nur
Vokabeln und Grammatik büffeln. Interkulturelle Aspekte
Foto: Orbon Alija/

gewinnen zunehmend an Bedeutung, wie zwei Experten

auf den nächsten Seiten näher ausführen.

INTERCULTURAL COMMUNICATION 4/2020 Business Spotlight 25 

JUDITH MADER assessment DR RUDI CAMERER Common European
is the author of several methodology [E(sesmEnt]   is the director of elc – European Framework of Reference
books and coursebooks, among them , Beurteilung Language Competence, a consultancy (CEFR) [)kQmEn
Testing and Assessment in Business in Frankfurt am Main. He has worked jUErE)pi:En )freImw§:k
English (Cornelsen), and co-author, in both adult education and language Ev (ref&rEns] 
[(kO:sbUk] UK 
with Rudi Camerer, of Intercultural ,  Gemeinsamer Euro-
, Lehrbuch testing. He is co-author, with Judith
Competence in Business English (Cor- päischer Referenzrahmen
Mader, of Intercultural Competence
nelsen) and A–Z of Intercultural Com- (GER)
in Business English (Cornelsen) and
munication (Academic Study Kit). She A–Z of Intercultural Communication consultancy
has worked as a test constructor and, (Academic Study Kit). He is also one [kEn(sVltEnsi] 
until recently, was head of languages of the two official translators of , Beratungsunternehmen
at the Frankfurt School of Finance & the Council of Europe’s new Common
Management. European Framework of Reference (CEFR)
Companion Volume.

How would you define intercultural competence and what Is it possible to measure intercultural competence? If so, how?
are its main elements? Camerer: The answer is yes. Provided you accept the approach
Camerer: Let’s start with the basics: a culture is not the same as outlined above — meaning that intercultural competence is
a nation. This is important and has often been misunderstood in “doing” it, rather than primarily a feature of personality, such
the past. There is strong evidence, in fact, that more cultural dif- as tolerance, mindfulness or resilience. These features are good
ferences exist within nations than between nations. Think of a to have in any kind of situation and they are in no way specific
big country like China, or a small one like Switzerland. Also, in to intercultural competence. Interestingly, the Occupational
real life, I have never met “a culture”, only individuals, who may English Test (OET), a renowned international language test for
or may not relate to the expectations I might have of them. There- healthcare workers, is presently being extended to include cri-
fore, we suggest a different approach: cultures are actually any teria such as “empathy”. What they mean by that — and intend
groups of people who share certain things, such as values, ways to test — is how you show empathy by the way you communi-
of communication or behaviour (the technical term is “discourse cate using language. I have no doubt that this can be trained,
communities”). If you look at it like this, each of us belongs to observed and tested. Similar things can be said for intercultural
several cultures, such as age group or gender, professional and encounters where openness, understanding, politeness and so
national cultures — and lots more. I, for example, communicate on are required to deal with a variety of possible situations.
like other people of my age group and professional standing do,
which is different from the communication styles used by the What is the relationship between intercultural competence
university students I teach. I am German, of course, but then I and language competence? Should these two elements be
was socialized in the north and feel familiar with the ways typical taught together or separately?
of people from that part of Germany. I play several musical in- Mader: Although they are sometimes seen as two different
struments and easily relate to people with similar interests and so things, there is no reason for teaching a language, in particular
on. The point is: each of us relates to several cultures, or discourse English, and intercultural competence separately any more.
communities, and these may change as we go through life. We learn another language in order to communicate with oth-
Now, to your question. A person who communicates effec- er speakers of the language. These will probably not be from
tively in intercultural situations is someone who is able to es- our own culture, so we will need intercultural competence as
tablish a trustful relationship with people from different back-
grounds — in spite of possibly fundamental differences in world
view, values, behaviour, etc. Basically, three things are necessary. approach healthcare worker relate to sb./sth.
[E(prEUtS]  [(helTkeE )w§:kE]  [ri(leIt tu] 
Firstly, a certain readiness to accept ways different to your own.
, Vorgehens-, ,  Fachkraft im Gesund- ,  eine Beziehung zu
What you find “normal” might not be seen as such by people Herangehensweise heitswesen jmdm./etw. herstellen,
from different cultural and other backgrounds. You also need to discourse community in terms of
sich jmdm./etw. zuordnen
be clear about your own limits — for example, how far you can [(dIskO:s kE)mju:nEti]  [In (t§:mz Qv] 
go in accepting other ways. Secondly, the starting phase of rela- , Diskursgemeinschaft ,  im Hinblick auf renowned [ri(naUnd] 
,  renommiert, anerkannt
tionship-building is important. If you fail, a trustful relationship encounter mindfulness
may never develop. Therefore, knowing what may be expected [In(kaUntE]  [(maIndf&lnEs]  resilience
, Begegnung , Achtsamkeit [ri(zIliEns] 
of you in terms of politeness is important. But remember: polite- ,  Resilienz, Belastbarkeit
evidence outline sth. [(aUtlaIn] 
ness conventions are not “normal” in any sense, but are always [(evIdEns]  ,  etw. (kurz) darlegen standing [(stÄndIN] 
context-specific. These two are the knowledge parts of intercul- ,  Beleg(e), Indiz(ien) , Stellung
provided [prE(vaIdId] 
tural competence. Thirdly, and most importantly, communicating
Foto:s: privat

feature , vorausgesetzt technical term

in a way that makes trustful relationships possible is what really [(fi:tSE]  [(teknIk&l t§:m] 
readiness [(redinEs] 
, Merkmal , Fachbegriff
counts — and that is what needs to be trained. , Bereitschaft

26  Business Spotlight 4/2020 INTERCULTURAL COMMUNICATION

well as vocabulary and grammar in order to get on with them.
As English has become the world’s number-one language of
communication, we will probably not be communicating with
native speakers in English, but with speakers of many different
languages, who will all have their own cultural backgrounds. We
need to take these into account when using English, so it is no
longer a case of learning about what people do or how they think MIGHT NOT BE SEEN
in Britain or the USA.
Of course, when we begin to learn a language, we need to
learn the pronunciation, grammar and vocabulary, and we will
make mistakes in these while we are learning. It is generally,
however, not these mistakes that are important, but mistakes in,
for instance, politeness which prevent a trustful and long-lasting
relationship. One important thing to remember is that language need a combination of the elements we describe above in order
mistakes (in grammar, for instance) are only really important if to become interculturally competent.
they lead to misunderstanding, unintentional amusement or
offence. The last of these is the most important and the most What do you see as the biggest changes and challenges in the
difficult to clear up. If you offend someone, it is extremely dif- area of intercultural communication over the next ten years?
ficult to compensate for it. Most people are not offended if you Mader: At the moment, it looks as though this will depend on
use the wrong tense or the wrong preposition. They probably how long the coronavirus crisis lasts and what effects it will
won’t even notice. have on national economies and global relationships. The crisis
is of a very different nature to any other we have experienced.
You’ve mentioned the importance of concepts such as Even the two world wars did not affect every single country. If
“politeness” or “trust” for intercultural communication. we are all suffering from the same difficulties in our everyday
To what extent are such concepts universal? lives, we can only hope that we will learn to work together more
Camerer: Communication theory has shown that relationship- and overcome our prejudices to get through the crisis together.
building and trust-building are indeed universal prerequisites Whether this will happen or not is another matter, but it does
for effective communication. How this is done is largely context- mean that it is becoming more and more important to under-
dependent. For example, in business contexts, strategies of stand what is going on outside your own national borders and
trust-building can be different from culture to culture — by culture. Indeed, global developments and the development of
which, again, we don’t necessarily mean national cultures. Cor- English as a lingua franca mean that more and more people,
porate cultures, for example, can vary even within one company. especially young people, will come into contact with other cul-
Compare the IT department with the finance department of any tures. This should inevitably lead to more awareness of and un-
company you’re familiar with. The way people communicate derstanding for other cultures and the ability to communicate
with one another may vary tremendously. So, here is my answer: effectively with people from these cultures. So, maybe not in
politeness itself is a process of relationship-building. This is, in ten years, but in 50 years, courses in intercultural competence
fact, a universal prerequisite. But politeness conventions, mean- will no longer be necessary.
ing precisely how you express respect, can vary tremendously. INTERVIEW: Ian McMaster and Paul Wheatley
This connects with what I said above: nothing is “normal”.
affect sth. [E(fekt]  inevitably prerequisite
What are the biggest challenges in trying to teach intercultur- ,  sich auf etw. auswirken, [In(evItEbli]  [pri:(rekwEzIt] 
etw. beeinflussen , zwangsläufig , Grundvoraussetzung
al competence?
Mader: We all have our own ideas of what is normal. These are chopstick [(tSQpstIk]  judgemental pronunciation
, Stäbchen [dZVdZ(ment&l]  [prE)nVnsi(eIS&n] 
generally culturally based and unconscious, so we need to be- ,  wertend, vorein- , Aussprache
clear sth. up [)klIEr (Vp] 
come aware of them first. Also, in a very complex world, we all genommen
,  etw. (auf)klären take sth. into account
need stereotypes in order to make things easier to understand, offence [)teIk )Intu E(kaUnt] 
corporate culture
but we must be very careful in using these stereotypes and espe- [)kO:pErEt (kVltSE] 
[E(fens]  ,  etw. berücksichtigen
,  Beleidigung, Kränkung
cially when expressing them, as they can easily be seen as judge- , Unternehmenskultur tense [tens] 
mental, ignorant or even racist. Not everyone who looks Asian offend sb. , Zeit(form)
eats with chopsticks, not everyone who looks Indian is a Hindu [di(pA:tmEnt] 
,  jmdn. beleidigen,
thought pattern
, Abteilung [(TO:t )pÄt&n] 
and not all English people drink tea all day or at five o’clock, just kränken
, Denkmuster
as not all Germans drink beer and wear lederhosen. This is one get on with sb.
[)get (Qn wID] UK  tremendously
of the most difficult challenges to our own and others’ think- ,  sich mit jmdm. verste-
, Vorurteil
ing. It is these thought patterns that need to be overcome, so we hen, mit jmdm. klarkommen , enorm

INTERCULTURAL COMMUNICATION 4/2020 Business Spotlight 27 


A higher purpose
Neben dem Verkauf ihrer Waren und Dienstleistungen ist es für Unternehmen
in der heutigen Zeit fast genauso wichtig, soziale Verantwortung zu übernehmen.
Mit den Übungen von DEBORAH CAPRAS können Sie testen, inwieweit Sie
den relevanten Wortschatz zu diesem Thema beherrschen.

Your business goal:

how good is it for
the planet?

It’s often not enough to sell a product or a service.
Today, businesses need to be about something
bigger. Ideally, they should be trying to make the
DEBORAH CAPRAS world better — not worse. This is, on a very basic
is a freelance author, trainer level, what is often called “CSR”, or “corporate so-
and corporate communications cial responsibility”. In this test, we explore what
specialist. She’s the author of
this involves on a practical level, at BIKE-UP, a
Small Talk, published by Col-
lins. Contact: deborahcapras@ medium-sized company that sells designer e-bikes.

28  Business Spotlight 4/2020 LANGUAGE TEST

WHAT IS “CSR”? 2. A good example (8 points)
Companies that have good CSR (corporate social responsibility)
practices are trying to do what’s best for the company, as well as
for society. Such companies tell the world what they are doing in Frank is discussing what to do next with his
order to attract customers, but also new employees. management team. The words in bold are not
where they should be. Put them where they
CSR or ESG? belong.
Choose both

Frank: Our special koala e-bikes sold really well

at the beginning of the year. We raised
a lot of (A) proceeds to help
fight the wildfires.

Sylvie: And because of the increased

(B) cause in our company,
we sold a lot of our other designs, too.

Frank: That’s true. We need to make ourselves

more visible again. What social
(C) commitment is trend-
ing right now?
1. A time for change (6 points)
Sylvie: Nothing that would work in the same
way. I’ve been thinking. Maybe we
Frank Spence, the CEO of BIKE-UP, is explain-
could find a(n) (D) funds we
ing some changes that will be made in the com-
could support in a long-term partner-
pany. Unscramble the letters to complete the
ship. One that is known for helping the
missing words in these extracts from his speech.
local (E) interest.
The first two letters are in the correct place.
Jill: I agree. I don’t want to sound cynical
“Everyone is talking about the new standards in here, but manufacturing another e-bike
business: CSR — corporate social responsibility won’t necessarily help the planet.
— and ESG — which stands for ‘environmental’, We should make regular (F)
‘social’ and (A) ‘ ’ (gonvencera).” community to an organization instead.

Frank: Designing a special e-bike is also a sign

“Both CSR and ESG are focused on promoting
that we are making a long-term
businesses that make the planet a better place
(G) charity to something.
for us all. Both put companies under a lot more
public (B) (sctyirun).” Sylvie: Especially if 100 per cent of the
(H) donations of its sales go
“I think we’d all agree that BIKE-UP takes care to the organization.
of its employees. But the ESG business space is
Frank: And I’ll make sure that happens.
so much more than that. First of all, we have to
reduce our carbon (C) (foroittnp).”

“Companies that successfully follow ESG stan­

dards can grow at twice the rate of other firms.

Illustrationen: axel2001, Dreamcreation; Foto: privat

There’s a(n) (D) (dednma) for green WHAT IS “ESG”?

products right now.” Generally, investors who are interested in ESG (environmental,
social and governance) standards — and their numbers are
increasing constantly — are focused not only on the financial
“For us, this change is not just a(n) (E) results. They want to see that a company is ethical, open and
(gickmim) to sell more products.” transparent in all of its business operations — and that none of
their business activities have a negative effect on anyone or any
“We want to serve a social (F) place.
(puorsep). Let’s do this!”

LANGUAGE TEST 4/2020 Business Spotlight 29 

a healthier option

3. Investing in the good (9 points) 4. The environment (7 points)

Privately, Frank wants to invest his money in Key elements of CSR and ESG are related to
companies that have a good reputation when the environment. Replace the German (in
it comes to CSR and ESG, which isn’t always italics) with the correct English verb.
easy. Use the words in the box to complete
his list of reasons why many companies are A. As a whole, we still
not a good investment choice. (ausstoßen) far too much CO2.
B. We need to reduce and
benefits | expectancy | fuels | harassment |
(verrechnen) these emissions.
inequality | obesity | rights | taxes | well-being
C. During production, we won’t
A. That company doesn’t care about (verschwenden) any materials.
human in the coun- D. Also, we mustn’t
tries where they have factories. (verschmutzen) the local environment.
B. That firm makes soft drinks that can lead to E. More of the energy we
childhood . (verbrauchen) needs to be clean.
C. They manufacture cigarettes, which, as we all F. We all want to
know, reduce life . (erreichen) carbon neutrality by 2030!
D. They constantly find new ways to avoid G. We really shouldn’t
paying . (beitragen) to deforestation in any way — we
E. Their products really don’t provide any have to stop serving avocados in the canteen!
societal .
F. There is a lot of income
at their company. ➻
G. They don’t care about the MODERN PHILANTHROPY
of their employees. With a net worth of over $120 billion (€108 billion), Amazon
CEO Jeff Bezos is ranked as the richest man in the world. Often
H. They made most of their profits from invest- criticized for not being much of a philanthropist, he recently made
ments in fossil . a serious attempt to change that image. In February 2020, he
launched the Bezos Earth Fund, and said he would be giving
I. Their company has some cases of sexual $10 billion (about €8.9 billion, or almost eight per cent of his
. fortune) to the fund, which will take up the fight against climate
change. “We can save the Earth,” he wrote on his Instagram post
about the fund.

30  Business Spotlight 4/2020 LANGUAGE TEST

5. Good questions (9 points) 6. Good practices (6 points)

Frank is interviewing Mark for a senior Frank gives Mark some more details about
position at BIKE-UP. Mark is looking for an the measures his company is taking. Replace
employer with a good reputation at every the expressions in bold with the option that
level. Choose the correct option to complete has a similar meaning.
each of Mark’s questions.
A. We’ve already (sold off our shares in) oil and
A. Do you pay all your workers a live / living gas companies.
wage? 1. devastated from 2. divested from

B. Is isolated / remote working an option for B. We’re (providing) information about all our
employees? manufacturers and suppliers.
1. disclosing 2. disabling
C. Do you offer flex / flexible hours?
C. We’re (not throwing usable material into)
D. Do you provide safe / security working con-
ditions in all your factories?
1. diverting material from
E. Do you support fair / fare trade? 2. digesting material from

F. Do you use raw / rough materials only from D. We have (both male and female directors
safe areas? on our board).
1. board diversity 2. board disparity
G. Do you focus on sustainable / sustained
development? E. We would never spread (fake news) to make
us look greener than we really are.
H. What’s your record on gender / sex equality?
1. disapproval 2. disinformation
I. When exatly will you be carbon neutered /
F. We have created energy-efficient schemes
for the (removal) of rubbish.
1. disposal 2. digestion
Illustrationen: invincible_bulldog, Dreamcreation/

more efficient
and friendlier

LANGUAGE TEST 4/2020 Business Spotlight 31 

A higher purpose 4. The environment
(Ein höheres Ziel) A. emit
B. offset
1. A time for change C. waste
Ethical businesses:
their future is green A. governance (environmental, D. pollute
social and governance E. consume
= Umwelt, Gesellschaft und F. achieve
7. The truth? (5 points) Unternehmensführung) G. contribute
B. scrutiny (public scrutiny
= öffentliche Kontrolle, prüfen- 5. Good questions
Match the terms (A–E) to their definitions
der Blick der Öffentlichkeit) A. living (living wage
(1–5). C. footprint (carbon footprint = existenzsichernder Lohn)
= CO2-Fußabdruck, -Bilanz) B. remote (remote working
A. conscious capitalism D. demand = Telearbeit, Home-Office)
E. gimmick = Trick; hier: Werbegag C. flexible (flexible hours =
B. corporate virtue-signalling F. purpose (social purpose flexible Arbeitszeiten, Gleitzeit)
C. hashtivism = gesellschaftliches Ziel) D. safe
D. moral merch E. fair
2. A good example F. raw
E. woke-washing
A. funds = finanzielle Mittel G. sustainable = nachhaltig
B. interest H. gender (gender equality
1. The use of green marketing campaigns and C. cause (social cause = soziales = Gleichstellung der
trendy product designs to hide bad business Anliegen) Geschlechter)
D. charity = karitative Organisation I. neutral (carbon neutral
practices. E. community = kohlenstoff-, klimaneutral)
2. The use of hashtags for political or social F. donations = Spenden
movements (such as #MeToo) in company G. commitment (make a long-term 6. Good practices
messages on social media — without plan- commitment = sich langfristig A–2 (divest from sth. = seine
engagieren) Geldanlage aus etw. verlagern);
ning to take any real part in the movement. H. proceeds = Ertrag/Erträge B–1 (disclose information
3. This is when companies focus not just on = Informationen veröffentlichen);
profits, but also on trying to create social, 3. Investing in the good C–1 (divert sth. = etw. umleiten;
A. rights hier: etw. erst gar nicht
cultural, emotional, spiritual, physical and
B. obesity = Fettleibigkeit hinbringen); D–1 (board diversity
ecological wealth for all employees, investors C. expectancy (life expectancy = hier: personelle Vielfalt im
and customers. = Lebenserwartung) Vorstand); E–2 (disinformation
4. This is when a company tries to show that it D. taxes = Falschinformation(en));
E. benefits (societal benefits F–1 (disposal of rubbish UK
is a decent organization with a higher moral = Nutzen/ Vorteile für die = Müllentsorgung)
purpose by expressing an opinion on current Gesellschaft)
political and social issues, even when their F. inequality 7. The truth?
G. well-being A–3; B–4; C–2;
business practices are not entirely in line
H. fuels (fossil fuel D–5 (merch (merchandise)
with this opinion in reality. = fossiler Brennstoff) = Ware(n)); E–1
5. These are products that are advertised as I. harassment = Belästigung
being good for the planet but that will just
end up as landfill. ➻
A– ; B– ; C– ; D– ; E–
• Our Skill Up! booklets offer vocabulary from key areas of everyday business
life. The second bundle is now available (see page 53).

40–50 30–39 18–29 Up to 17
Illustration: Good_Stock/

Note: So that you can Excellent! Well done! Good Could do better
compare your language That’s a great result! You You did very well. Have Not bad. But if you want to That wasn’t great, was it? If
knowledge across different must work for a company another go now at the improve your vocabulary in you’re interested in getting
areas of business English, with excellent CSR and ESG exercises where you didn’t this area, try the test again involved in aspects of CSR
all Business Spotlight tests practices. get 100 per cent and tomorrow — and the day and ESG across borders,
have a maximum possible make a note of any new after that. you’ll need to learn the
score of 50 points. vocabulary. English vocabulary.

32  Business Spotlight 4/2020 LANGUAGE TEST

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Home alone
In global agierenden Unternehmen gehören virtuelle Teams zum ganz normalen Berufsalltag. In einer
Ausnahmesituation wie der jetzigen kann das Arbeiten außerhalb der Firma jedoch für das wirtschaftliche
Überleben von Arbeitgebern und Arbeitnehmer entscheidend sein. BOB DIGNEN nennt zehn Faktoren,
die für einen reibungslosen Ablauf der Arbeit im Homeoffice wichtig sind.

he legacy of the Covid-19 crisis What the Covid-19 crisis has done, how- adopt sth. [E(dQpt] 
will be felt for months, if not years. ever, is dramatically increase the degree of ,  etw. einführen
As many families seek to recover
from personal tragedies, organiza-
remote working in relation to face-to-face
contact. The challenge is to find optimal
come to terms with sth.
[)kVm tE (t§:mz wID] 
,  sich mit etw. arrangieren,
tions have to come to terms with
a new reality. One of the biggest
ways of working virtually. Here, we look
at ten habits that will help you to do this.
mit etw. zurechtkommen
changes will be the prominence
given to remote (or virtual) team- 1. Think positively
, Engagement; OUTPERFORM
work. In many cases, whole teams work The first habit to cultivate is a positive Verpflichtung

from home (“WFH”). mindset with respect to virtual work- commuting time

[kE(mju:tIN taIm] 
In this article, we look at ten key skills ing. Beyond the immediate global health
,  Fahr-, Pendelzeit
that remote workers need to hone. We crisis, there are many good reasons why
dispersed [dI(sp§:st] 
provide insights, but not all the answers,
because working life is more complex
than simple dos and don’ts. The ques-
organizations adopt virtual working
practices. These include reduced com-
muting times, a lower environmental
, verstreut

expertise [)eksp§:(ti:z] 
, Sachkompetenz
tions we ask about your virtual context impact from road and air travel (see face sth. [feIs] 
will help you to reflect on your working Business Spotlight 3/2020, pp. 14–17), the ,  etw. gegenüberstehen
practices and will provide topics to dis- ability to connect and leverage skills face-to-face
cuss with other remote workers in your across distances and the ability to appeal [)feIs tE (feIs] 
, persönlich
team. This will help you to develop the to the preferences of young-generation
virtual team habits you’ll need to perform talents. hone sth. [hEUn] 
,  etw. verfeinern,
effectively. Also, research shows that individuals verbessern
with expertise and commitment in vir-
insight [(InsaIt] 
What do we mean by “remote working”? tual teams can outperform teams work- ,  Einblick, Erkenntnis
One of the difficulties of remote working ing in a traditional office. In other words, legacy [(legEsi] 
lies in its definition. We typically mean the idea of “virtual” as a problem is a self- , Vermächtnis;
“a situation in which people who are geo- limiting belief. And this belief can mask hier: Folgen
graphically dispersed and interacting via more fundamental challenges faced by leverage sth.
electronic communication channels, such virtual teams, such as a lack of resources,
,  etw. wirksam einsetzen
as phone calls, conference calls, videocon- no clear priorities or the unpopular deci-
mindset [(maIndset] 
ferencing, email, team platforms, messag- sions they have to take. , Einstellung

ing software and chat forums”. Consider your virtual context:
outperform sb.
All individuals and teams work remote- What advantages does working virtual- [)aUtpE(fO:m] 

ly to some degree. We are never always in ly offer your organization? ,  jmdn. (an Leistung)
the same place as our colleagues. Even in In what areas can virtual communica- übertreffen
Illustration: Mick Marston

the same geographical location, we are of- tion outperform face-to-face interac- prominence [(prQmInEns] 
,  Bedeutung, Wichtigkeit

ten in different rooms, on different floors tion?
or in different buildings. What are the bigger organizational remote [ri(mEUt] 
, entfernt; hier: von
Virtuality is therefore always a matter challenges that you face, which have verschiedenen Standorten /
of degree rather than something absolute. nothing do to with virtual working? nicht vom Büro aus

34  Business Spotlight 4/2020 BUSINESS SKILLS

Change of view:
Fotos: XX

my home is
now my office

BUSINESS SKILLS 4/2020 Business Spotlight 35 

The solution is to discuss expectations openly and 6. Trust differently abandoned [E(bÄndEnd] 
design a new, sustainable form of virtual collabora- Trust is an important issue in virtual teams. But the , aufgegeben; hier: im
Stich gelassen
tion, with clear decision-making principles and com- thinking on this key concept is often muddled or
audible [(O:dEb&l] 
munication protocols. simply inaccurate. The consensus view is that trust
, hörbar

Consider your virtual context: needs to be increased when working and leading in
check in with sb.
What difficulties have you experienced with virtu- virtual contexts. But it is more accurate to say that [)tSek (In wID] 
al team collaboration and decision-making? What a different kind of trust is required, not necessarily ,  hier: mit jmdm. in

were the reasons for them? more trust. Kontakt treten, sich mit
jmdm. austauschen
What is your preferred virtual team collaboration Trust is not without risk. Indeed, simply trusting
conference call

model? Why do you prefer this model? more may lead to a greater number of errors made by
[(kQnf&rEns kO:l] 
What are the risks of your preferred model? How less experienced team members. It may also lead to , Telefonkonferenz
can you manage these risks effectively? a feeling of stress among those suddenly entrusted dedicate time to sth.
with more responsibility, and a sense of loss among [)dedIkeIt (taIm tu] 
5. Get technical those feeling abandoned by their line manager or ,  Zeit für etw. aufwenden

Technical competence is emerging as a competitive colleagues. emerge as sth.

[i(m§:dZ Äz]  ,  sich als
advantage in the job market. Being familiar with vir- Ultimately, the key issue is not trust but perfor-
etw. herausstellen
tual communication tools, ranging from informal mance. How can teams maintain high levels of per-
entrust sb. with sth.
chat software to collaborative team environments, formance when leaders are unable to wander around [In(trVst wID] 
makes you more attractive to prospective employers. and check in informally with team members? How ,  jmdm. etw. anvertrauen,
The jury is still out, however, on whether sophis- can leaders, for example, who send out emails to übertragen
ticated communication platforms really deliver on check whether or not a report has been completed, glitch [glItS] ifml. 
,  Panne, Störung
their promise of creating flows of information that avoid being accused of micromanagement? In the
are structured better. And there is a danger that re- end, it’s situational. Leaders need to profile their team jury is still out: the ~
[)dZUEri Iz stIl (aUt] 
mote workers and virtual teams might become over- members to see who needs what degree of virtual ,  das letzte Wort ist noch
whelmed by having too many communication tools supervision and support. And they need to be ready nicht gesprochen
and channels. Making clear decisions on which chan- to delegate more tasks to those who have the com- line manager
nels will be used for which purposes — and which mitment and competence to take on more responsi- [(laIn )mÄnIdZE] UK 
, direkte(r)
technical skills are expected of individuals — is es- bility. The time saved can then be dedicated to help-
sential for effective collaboration. ing and supervising those who may be struggling
Another key technical skill, which is seldom men- in their new virtual role. [(maIkrEUmÄnIdZmEnt] 
tioned, is the ability to manage low-tech problems ,  autoritärer, detailorien-
— what we might call “glitch management”. This in- tierter Führungsstil
cludes being able to manage an important phone call Small technical muddled [(mVd&ld] 
problems: learn , verworren
that constantly disconnects, handling a conference to solve them
call in which one of the most important participants overwhelmed
is hardly audible, maintaining a videoconference that , überfordert
has a two-second time lag in the voice communica-
prospective [prE(spektIv] 
tion or getting an email to someone whose system ,  künftig
constantly sends your messages to spam. How good protocols
are your glitch-management skills in such situations? [(prEUtEUkQlz] 

Consider your virtual context: ,  hier: Regeln

Which technical skills do you need to improve, and sophisticated

by when, in order to increase your effectiveness [sE(fIstIkeItId] 
,  hier: technisch

when working remotely? ausgefeilt
Illustration: Mick Marston

Has your virtual team discussed and defined which sustainable

channels of communication you are going to use [sE(steInEb&l] 

for which tasks? If not, why not? , tragfähig

What would be your advice for managing each of time lag [(taIm lÄg] 
, Verzögerung
the glitches mentioned above?

BUSINESS SKILLS 4/2020 Business Spotlight 37 

2. Stay connected
One of the main challenges of remote
taking regular breaks and maintaining
one’s full focus on work even when there
accountable: be ~ for sth.
[E(kaUntEb&l]  REMOTE
,  für etw. verantwortlich
working is dealing with a feeling of are urgent home duties and other distrac- sein
isolation that can come with working tions.
from home. The loss of connection with
colleagues can lead to a lost sense of be-
Without the normal rhythm imposed
by work in a central location, remote
, Entfremdung NEED TO SET
longing to an organization. This form of
alienation can quickly result in stress and
workers need to set a personal agenda for
each day and remote teams need to define
anxiety [ÄN(zaIEti] 
, Angst; hier auch: A PERSONAL
anxiety. And this, in turn, can undermine their priorities clearly. Holding regular vir-
call [kO:l] 
motivation and commitment to the stra- tual team meetings can help to provide an

,  hier: Konferenz-
tegic cause, which may be almost invisi- element of normal structure. schaltung

ble from home. Consider your virtual context: cause [kO:z] 
To remain productive in such situa- How can you best structure your work- ,  Sache, Anliegen

tions, it is essential to connect to one’s ing day at home? clarify sth.
own intrinsic motivations. It is also im- How can you and your virtual team set [(klÄrEfaI] 
,  etw. klären, klarstellen

portant to stay informed about your priorities effectively?
organization and to be curious about How might your working routine at compelling
discovering how your role does make a home make life difficult for others? , überzeugend
difference. For those in leadership roles, it
is essential to communicate the organiza- 4. Take decisions on decisions [dI(strÄkS&n] 
tion’s goals clearly and actively and to in- One of the biggest challenges of working , Ablenkung
spire others with the help of a compelling remotely is how to coordinate decision- engineered: be ~ for sth.
vision. And for all team members, touch- making. It is important to clarify even [)endZI(nIEd] 
,  hier: strukturell auf
ing base regularly with other remote more clearly than usual who is account- etw. ausgerichtet sein
workers can help to maintain emotional able for what and define who needs to
impose sth. [Im(pEUz] 
connections. be consulted before decisions are made. ,  etw. auferlegen

Consider your virtual context: Many organizations today are engineered intrinsic [In(trInsIk] 
What could you do to reduce the feel- for collaboration, joint decision-making, ,  innere(r,s), eigene(r,s)
ing of isolation of remote workers in shared leadership (see Business Spotlight invisible [In(vIzEb&l] 

your team? 1/2020) and iterative and flexible plan- , unsichtbar; hier: nicht
What strategies could you develop as a ning processes. erkennbar

remote worker to unleash your intrin- This is fine if you have lots of oppor- iterative

sic motivations? tunities to interact, share ideas sponta- ,  sich wiederholend
As a leader, how can you communicate neously and get information quickly. Your goal: try to
your visions and goals more clearly to But virtual teams find it more difficult [E(fendId]  stay connected
your virtual team? to achieve such flexible and collabora- ,  beleidigt, gekränkt
tive decision-taking. It often takes time persona [pE(sEUnE] 
3. Set your own agenda to get everyone on a call. And decisions ,  hier: Außendarstellung

Self-leadership is one of the most im- may suddenly be taken by individuals or regression [ri(greS&n] 
portant success factors for remote work- a minority rather than being discussed , Rückschritt

ers. Home life normally has a different and then taken by the team as a whole. rhythm [(rIDEm] 
,  [wg. Aussprache]
rhythm, intensity and sense of discipline Moving to a decision-making process
from the values that drive one’s “at-work that requires less interaction might in- routine [)ru:(ti:n] 
,  [wg. Aussprache]
persona”. Successful virtual working deed be an option for virtual teams. But
touch base with sb.
therefore means applying traditional or- for many people, this is a regression to
[)tVtS (beIs wID] 
ganizational skills in a new context. This old-fashioned working practices. And ,  sich mit jmdm. in
means creating a quiet home space in those who are suddenly excluded from Verbindung setzen
which to work without interruptions, dis- decision-making may be offended and unleash sth. [Vn(li:S] 
ciplining oneself to begin and end work, become demotivated. ,  etw. freisetzen

36  Business Spotlight 4/2020 BUSINESS SKILLS

Team members also need to develop a virtual interaction is the key to success. cc (carbon copy):
different form of trust towards each other, Below are questions you should discuss be in ~ on an email

so that they are confident that key tasks with your team. Although videoconfer- [)si: (si:] ,  eine Kopie
einer E-Mail erhalten
will be performed on time. The best strat- ences more closely replicate physical
egy is for teams to discuss the role of trust
openly and define procedures for report-
meetings, many of the questions are
still useful, given the limits of many
,  Umstände, Situation THE ROLE OF
ing to each other. And don’t forget: a key
part of virtual trust is helping others to
videoconferencing tools. credible [(kredEb&l] 
, glaubwürdig TRUST OPENLY
trust you. Developing a credible, reliable
and likeable virtual persona is something
For emails
→ How long should an email be, and
cue [kju:] 
, Stichwort; hier: Signal AND DEFINE
few people think about. Yet it is an essen-
tial oil that allows the wheels of virtual
how is it best structured?
→ Who should be in cc on emails, and in
disruption [dIs(rVpS&n] 
,  Störung, Unterbrechung REPORTING
teams to turn smoothly. which circumstances? engagement
Consider your virtual context: → How, and how quickly, should an
, Einbindung
When is trust important and when is email be answered?
facilitator [fE(sIlEteItE] 

trust dangerous in your virtual team? → When should one post in an online , Moderator(in);
What are the factors that should make tool or make a telephone call rather hier: Sitzungsleiter(in)
people trust you? How can you help than send an email? given [(gIv&n] 

this trust to develop more quickly? , angesichts
If you are a leader, how can you opti- For audio-conference calls indicate sth. [(IndIkeIt] 
mize the trust you show your team → What’s the best way to avoid the dom- ,  etw. erkennen lassen

members? ination of conference calls by particu- minutes [(mInIts]  

, (Sitzungs-)Protokoll
lar individuals, such as native speakers
7. Structure your interactions of English? on time [)Qn (taIm] 
, fristgerecht
One of the main problems identified by → Who is the best moderator of con-
those working virtually is the disruption ference calls: a native speaker, a non- replicate sth. [(replIkeIt] 
,  etw. nachbilden
experienced when relying on email and native speaker, a person in authority
audio-conference calls. People typically or another person?
feel more in control during face-to-face → Which agenda format is best suited
conversations, when they can respond for the meeting? Building trust:
synchronously to others directly, both → Should people always say their name what you give
verbally and through their body lan- before speaking? is what you get
guage. A facial expression can signal dis- → How should the facilitator best inter-
agreement or a lack of understanding, a rupt people who talk too long?
raised eyebrow can indicate a question → How should the facilitator invite oth-
to be asked. Also, there is the possibility ers to speak?
of renegotiating the rules of engagement → Does everyone need to contribute? If
during a discussion, for example by going so, how can this be guaranteed?
to the flip chart and visualizing a problem → How short should people keep their
with a drawing or diagram. contributions?
The asynchronous and slower nature → What is the best way to handle com-
of email interaction feels less efficient plex topics?
to many. And the lack of visual cues in → To what extent is multitasking, such
emails and audio-conference calls makes as the use of mobile phones, allowed?
Illustrationen: Mick Marston

it more challenging to manage interac- → What is the best way to record the
tions, particularly when there are domi- minutes?
nant and reserved speakers in the same
virtual conversation. Formally and ex- Interestingly, many of these areas of clar-
plicitly agreeing on specific protocols for ification are the same as for face-to-face

38  Business Spotlight 4/2020 BUSINESS SKILLS


Tough choice:
how should you

BUSINESS SKILLS 4/2020 Business Spotlight 39 

meetings. The difference is that, in such
meetings, there is more scope to impro-
⋅⋅What strategies might be useful for
managing emotions when communi-
anger [(ÄNgE] 
vise and invent rules as you go. In virtual
meetings, it is therefore even more impor-
cating virtually?
How can we better understand the
apply [E(plaI] 
,  hier: gelten
tant to set protocols in advance. underlying intentions of an email and as you go [)Äz jE (gEU] 
,  während des Verlaufs;
Consider your virtual context: other forms of electronic communica- hier auch: spontan
Which aspects of your email style tion from remote workers in our team?
boundary [(baUndEri] 
might frustrate or confuse others? , Grenze
Looking at the above questions, what
could you do to improve your effective-
9. Maintain informal contacts
Most of the literature on virtual teams
clarity [(klÄrEti] 
ness in virtual meetings?
Which rules regarding email and con-
focuses on formal roles and formal lead-
ership. Organizations, however, thrive
function [(fVNkS&n] 
, Aufgabenbereich AS FORMAL
ference calls do you feel it is important
to discuss with your team?
on the interactions of many informal net-
works of individuals, both internal (across
[Im(prQmptju:]  ROLES AND
, spontan
departments, functions and national
8. Look at things differently boundaries) and external (with custom- nurture sth. [(n§:tSE] 
,  etw. pflegen
How often have you heard a colleague ers, suppliers, consulting companies and
reverse the telescope
complaining about an email or other partners). When people take on a virtual
[ri)v§:s DE (telIskEUp] 
message that they received? Or how often role, building and maintaining these in- ,  hier etwa: den
have you felt frustrated or angry about a formal networks is important but, at the Blickwinkel ändern;
(etw.) als weniger
message you have received from a virtual same time, challenging. Periodic informal dramatisch betrachten
team member? We are often unforgiving emails to check in with internal and ex-
scheduled [(Sedju:ld] 
in such remote contexts. Although we see ternal stakeholders is very helpful, com- ,  anberaumt, terminiert
the words clearly that the other person bined with regularly scheduled calls and
scope [skEUp] 
communicates, we can seldom see with even impromptu surprise calls. All these , Spielraum
the same clarity why they are communi- measures can help to nurture relation- stakeholder
cating as they do, or the potentially posi- ships and keep them healthy. [(steIk)hEUldE] 

tive intention behind their message. Consider your virtual context: , Projektbeteiligte(r)

The potential discrepancy between Which informal networks, both inter- sustained [sE(steInd] 
, anhaltend
words and intent is often viewed through nal and external, should you pay more

a form of telescope that magnifies con- attention to? thrive [TraIv] 
,  florieren, erfolgreich sein
fusion and negative reactions. And this What structure of regular check-ins,
underlying [)VndE(laIIN] 
can lead us to respond in a manner that via email or phone call, is best for each
, tieferliegend

escalates matters still further. An alter- of your stakeholders?
native is possible, however: reverse the How many face-to-face meetings are [)VnfE(gIvIN] 
telescope, reduce your emotionality and ideal to maintain the relationships in , nachtragend
frustration, and think calmly about the your network? What can you do if such
potentially positive motivation behind meetings are not possible because of
the email. Then reply in a positive way travel restrictions?
that moves things forward constructively.
The same applies when listening in con- 10. Cultivate your intuition
ference calls. Remember — and this is Working virtually with sustained suc-
important — your frustration and anger cess calls for formal planning skills. It
reveal more about your own intolerance also requires a more intuitive and emo-
Illustration:en: Mick Marston

than they do you about the other person. tion-driven capability. This helps you to

Consider your virtual context: read between the lines of an email for
Which aspects of your own virtual be- what is unsaid. It enables you to hear the
haviour might cause your colleagues to special tone of a voice in a virtual meeting, Phone or write?
be frustrated or angry? Continued on p. 44 It’s your call

40  Business Spotlight 4/2020 BUSINESS SKILLS

Fotos: XX

Conference calls:
a key challenge
BUSINESS SKILLS 4/2020 Business Spotlight
for virtual teams 41 

Staying on message
Treffen sich Mitarbeiter, von denen einige im Unternehmen selbst und andere im Homeoffice
arbeiten, zu einer Videokonferenz, müssen sie dabei nicht nur feste Regeln beachten. Auch die
Technik und deren Handhabung müssen stimmen. SIRIN KALE hat die Details.

More and more people are now us- beginning, say: ‘This is the purpose
ing videoconferencing technology of the meeting, this is how long
such as Skype or Zoom from home. we’ve got, we’re going to spend this
What is the best way to project an much time on each item.’”
aura of professionalism when us-
ing this technology? Dress appropriately
Just because you are working from
Understand the technology home doesn’t mean you can dress Ask yourself: is your look appropriate?
All videoconferencing programs like a slob. “I don’t expect my team
have the same basic features, includ- to be perfect all the time,” says Bai- Staying on message ennui [(Qnwi:] 
ing a mute button, a screen-sharing ley, “but make sure you’re dressed [)steIIN Qn (mesIdZ]  ,  Langeweile, Überdruss
,  hier etwa: Auf der
option that lets others see what’s on appropriately. Pyjamas aren’t an op- executive [Ig(zekjUtIv] 
ganzen Linie dabei 
your computer and a chat function tion!” And think about what your , Führungskraft
(on message 
to type in messages to other users. colleagues can see behind you. An ,  die offizielle Linie item [(aItEm] 
vertretend) , Tagesordnungspunkt
“Mute your microphone if you overflowing laundry basket doesn’t
aren’t talking,” advises technology give the best impression. “A neutral associate professor laundry basket
[E)sEUsiEt prE(fesE] US  [(lO:ndri )bA:skIt] 
executive Amy Bailey, who manages backdrop is good, so people don’t , außerordentliche(r) , Wäschekorb
a team of remote workers from her get distracted,” says Spicer. Professor(in)
mute button
home in California. And if you’re backdrop [(bÄkdrQp]  [(mju:t )bVt&n] 
unfamiliar with video calling, try Don’t create zoombies , Hintergrund , Stummschalttaste
practising some calls with family Technology can dehumanize inter- business school pattern [(pÄt&n] 
and friends. personal interactions. Gianpiero [(bIznEs sku:l]  , Muster
, Wirtschaftsakademie
Petriglieri, an associate professor remote worker
chairing protocols
Keep it short of organizational behaviour at San [ri)mEUt (w§:kE] 
[(tSeErIN )prEUtEUkQlz]  ,  Mitarbeiter(in), der/
You know the guy. He drones on Francisco business school INSEAD, , Moderationsregeln die von einem anderen
in meetings while everyone else often teaches through videocon- deliberate: be ~ about sth.
Standort und nicht vom
shifts in their seats. Video calling ferencing. He is aware of how the Büro aus arbeitet 
(remote  , entfernt)
can make things worse. “It tends technology can cause people to dis- ,  sich etw. gut überlegen
sapped: sb.’s spirit is ~
to enhance existing patterns of associate from the content of the disassociate from sth.
from sth. [sÄpt] 
[)dIsE(sEUsieIt frQm] 
behaviour,” says Professor André meeting. “I call them zoombies,” ,  hier etwa: jmd. bringt
,  sich von etw.
Spicer, an expert in organizational Petriglieri says. “You become a sich nicht länger in etw. ein
(sap  ,  auszehren)
behaviour at Cass Business School. zoombie when your spirit is sapped distracted: get ~
“We know that males tend to dom- from what you’re doing.” To avoid slob [slQb] ifml. 
, Gammler(in)
inate conversations, and with video technology-induced ennui, hold vid- ,  abgelenkt werden
calls this is often the case.” The way eo meetings only when absolutely drone on (about sth.)
[(zu:mbi] ifml. 
[)drEUn (Qn (E)baUt)] 
to deal with this is for managers to necessary. “Be deliberate about why ,  etwa: Person, die ohne
,  langatmig (über etw.)
be strict about who speaks, and for you’re having the meeting,” says echte Teilnahmebereit-
schaft bei einer Zoom
how long. “Follow good chairing Petriglieri. And be selective about enhance sth. [In(hA:ns]  Videokonferenz
protocols,” suggests Spicer. “At the who you invite. “Get as few people ,  etw. verstärken zugeschaltet ist

42  Business Spotlight 4/2020 BUSINESS SKILLS

on the call as possible,” advises Bruce office bore drones on. With video calling, accountable: be held ~ for sth.
Daisley, author of The Joy of Work: 30 Ways these subtleties are lost. This is why peo- [E(kaUntEb&l] 
to Fix Your Work Culture and Fall in Love with ple will often have a secret private chat ,  wegen etw. zur Rechen-
schaft gezogen werden
Your Job Again. “When you’ve got a collec- going on with their co-workers during
aide [eId] 
tion of 50 postage-stamp-sized faces on videoconferences. But a chat message is
,  Berater(in), Referent(in)
the screen, it’s impossible to feel connect- much more permanent than an eye-roll.
combat sth. [(kQmbÄt] 
ed. And when you don’t know everyone “These messages can be recorded by em- ,  etw. bekämpfen
in the meeting, you speak less frankly.” ployers and people can be held account-
dial in [)daI&l (In] 
able for them,” says Spicer. “An informal ,  sich einwählen
Practise good etiquette eye-roll can be disavowed, but an instant disavow sth. [)dIsE(vaU] 
You wouldn’t openly browse Twitter message on a company server can’t.” So, ,  etw. ab-, verleugnen
during a meeting, so don’t do it in a video if you want to complain to a trusted col- engage with sb.
call. “Make eye contact with the camera,” league about how boring the video call is, [In(geIdZ wID] 
,  mit jmdm. interagieren
says Bailey. “If you’re typing, mute your use your personal mobile phone instead.
keyboard so other people don’t hear click- etiquette [(etIket] 
,  [wg. Aussprache]
ing.” Sit forward in your seat when others Make it human
are talking, rather than slumping on your “The interesting thing about remote fix sth. [fIks] 
,  hier: etw. verbessern
sofa. This shows your co-workers that working is that people always think it
frankly [(frÄNkli] 
you’re taking part actively. If some peo- will be better,” says Daisley. “But people’s , offen
ple are dialling in from home, and others stress levels are actually higher when they
mindful: be ~ of sb.
are at work, be mindful of the people who work remotely. It’s stressful and lonely. [(maIndf&l] ,  sich einer
are physically absent. Meetings may be We think our boss doesn’t trust us and Person bewusst sein
weighted in favour of the people in the our team doesn’t like us.” Video calling office bore [(QfIs bO:] 
room: they can exchange looks or read with other individuals can help combat ,  Langweiler(in) vom Dienst

body language in a way those who are at social isolation. “I work for a company slump [slVmp] 
home cannot do. Petriglieri often teaches where 80 per cent of the employees work ,  zusammengesackt dasitzen

mixed seminars, where some participants remotely,” says Bailey. “Our HR depart- strained [streInd] 
,  angestrengt, forciert
are present and others are dialling in, for ment encourages us to call people via
example from home. He compares it to video call instead of sending them an subtlety [(sVt&lti] 
, Feinheit
meetings between heads of state: world email, so that you can have that face-to-
leaders sit at the conference table, and face interaction. It adds time, but it helps
the aides on the chairs behind them. “The you engage more with your co-workers.”
best advice I can give is to be mindful of US software start-up GitHub even runs
the people in the second row,” says Petri- “Remote Happy Hours” for those work- Avoid isolation: use video calls
glieri. If you are in a meeting room with ing from home — although they have to
a large screen showing people dialled in drink whatever is in their own fridge.
from home, Petriglieri recommends ask-
ing participants at home to raise their Like any technology, video calling is neu-
hands if they want to talk. “It’s easy to ig- tral. It’s about how you use it. If you follow
nore people who aren’t in the room if the these tips, you’ll get the most out of vid-
conversation is getting going,” he says. eo-calling software. And remember: if you
“Ask people to let you know if someone are watching Netflix instead of working,
is raising their hand and you don’t see it.” be sure to put your microphone on mute.
Illustrationen: Mick Marston

Be careful with private chats SIRIN KALE

is a London-based journalist specializ-
So much of our interaction in meetings
ing in women’s rights, politics, music,
is nonverbal. The eye-roll behind your lifestyle and culture.
boss’s back, or the strained smile when the © Guardian News and Media 2020

BUSINESS SKILLS 4/2020 Business Spotlight 43 

to hear which words seem to carry heavier stress and
emphasis, and which phrases betray a challenge that
Language reference
people are facing with their internal motivation or Here are some examples of the language you and your team can use
commitment. when working remotely.

Intuition alerts you to the fact that text messages

that used to be answered immediately now come Think positively Can I pass this on to you now? I
back only after two or three days. You recognize the What is the main challenge we think it’s better if you supervise

disappearance of small talk from the beginning of face here? this project.
conference calls, and the use of a more transactional To what extent is working virtu-

approach to problems. You notice more errors than ally part of the problem? Structure your interactions

usual in prepared documentation. The ability to What other factors should we Emails
pick up on such small clues is an advanced skill that also consider? I’m just writing to…
comes partly from experience but also from paying Could you let me have your re-

⋅⋅ ⋅⋅
attention to the very factor that virtual working Stay connected sponse by… ?
threatens to undermine — the intimacy of working How are you feeling at the mo- If you feel we should discuss

closely with others. ment? Are you OK? this, just let me know and I can

Consider your virtual context: Our main purpose here is to… give you a call.

How well do you read signals that reveal the emo- What we are trying to achieve Audio-conference calls

tions of others? here is… Just to clarify some communica-
How can you gain more insight into how col- tion rules for our virtual meet-

⋅⋅ ⋅⋅ ⋅⋅
leagues in your virtual teams are feeling? Set your own agenda ing, should we… ?
What can you do to maintain positive emotions The most important thing to get Can I remind the native speak-

for yourself and others when working remotely? done today is… ers to be as brief as possible, and

I’m planning to handle this to- to speak slowly and clearly?

Start the conversation morrow. Sorry to interrupt you, Diane,
Many people have suddenly had to adapt to the chal- I’m very busy with… at the mo- but I’d like to bring Susan in
lenges of working remotely, often in the isolation of ment. Can we talk about this on here.
their own home. Virtual collaboration, like all forms Monday?

of collaboration, requires attention to sharing beliefs Look at things differently

and expectations about the meaning of such key con- Take decisions on decisions Could we just clarify a couple of
cepts as “team”, “communication” and “decision”. But Who is the best person to organ- things in your email? What was

remote working also presents its own special chal- ize this? the reason you said you thought

lenges. Use the questions above for self-reflection What’s the best way for us to de- that… ?

but, more importantly, to start conversations with cide this? So, is it your intention to… ?
others in your (new) virtual teams. The act of dis- I think the best option is to… What would be your suggestion
cussing these questions is, in itself, likely to bring you What do you think? on how to solve this? I am happy
closer together and increase the effectivity of your to support you.

virtual collaboration. Make a start today. Get technical

What’s the best channel of com- Maintain informal contacts

alert sb. to sth. emphasis reveal sth.
munication for this task? I’m just writing to see how you

[E(l§:t tu]  [(emfEsIs]  [ri(vi:&l]  I can show you how to use this are doing.

,  jmdn. auf etw. , Hervorhebung, ,  etw. offenlegen if you’d like. Would it be useful to have a
aufmerksam machen; Akzent

hier: jmdn. etw.
stress Can you show me how to use short catch-up call?
pick up on sth. [stres] 
wissen lassen this program? Shall we update each other on
[)pIk (Vp Qn]  , Betonung
betray sth. [bi(treI]  ,  etw. bemerken things next week?

,  etw. verraten Trust differently

Are you sure you can deliver this Cultivate your intuition

by the end of the week? How do you feel about…?

I’ll contact you on Thursday You look worried. Can I help?
AUDIO + PLUS to make sure everything is on I think we need to stay positive
track. because…
You can try our
exercises on this
topic on Business brief: be ~ catch-up call [(kÄtS Vp )kO:l]  on track [)Qn (trÄk] 
BOB DIGNEN Spotlight Audio [bri:f]  ,  Anruf, um sich kurz auf den ,  auf Kurs; hier: im Plan
is a director of York Asso- as well as in our
,  sich kurzfassen neuesten Stand zu bringen
ciates (www.york-associates. exercise booklet, remotely [ri(mEUtli] and author of many
Business Spotlight bring sb. in clarify sth. [(klÄrEfaI]  , entfernt; hier: nicht
Plus. To order, go [)brIN (In]  ,  etw. klären, klarstellen vom Büro aus
business English books. to www.aboshop.
Foto: privat
Fotos: XX

Contact: bob.dignen@york- ,  hier: jmdn. zu Wort face sth. [feIs]  supervise sth. [(su:pEvaIz] kommen lassen
,  etw. gegenüberstehen ,  etw. überwachen

44  Business Spotlight 4/2020 BUSINESS SKILLS


Connecting through music

Musik vermittelt Konzepte oft besser, als Worte allein es könnten.
Das erfuhr KEN TAYLOR in seinem Gespräch mit Manuela Schuette,
der Frontfrau der Gruppe Mishaped Pearls.

Ken Taylor: You have the opportunity Taylor: That must have felt like a risky
MANUELA KEN TAYLOR to travel internationally with your band. thing to do. The competition in the music
SCHUETTE is a communica- How did you get involved in the music world is incredibly fierce.
tion consultant,
is a freelance business, Manuela? Schuette: But I knew I had to take that
classical singer personal coach
and author of Manuela Schuette: My mum played risk. I didn’t want to continue my life on
and lead singer
of the folk 50 Ways to the guitar, and there was always positive, autopilot. For me, music expresses those
crossover band Improve Your joyful music in the Lutheran church we feelings I have about life, the things I
Mishaped Pearls. Business English
(Lulu Publish-
went to. stand for — freedom, love, bringing peo-
Born in Germany,
she currently ing). Contact: ple together.
divides her time KTaylor868@aol. Taylor: But you didn’t study music after
between France you left school. Taylor: Maybe through music, you can
and London,
Schuette: No. Influenced by my working- express ideas that would be rejected by
and regularly
travels interna- class, Lutheran background, I felt I had your listeners if they were spoken by a
tionally as part to get a “proper” job. So, I trained to be an politician, for example.
of her musical occupational therapist. But music was
really my first love. I studied the guitar and took singing lessons in my spare
competition occupational therapist
www.mishaped time.
[)kQmpE(tIS&n]  [Qkju)peIS&nEl , Konkurrenz (TerEpIst] 
Taylor: Why did you come to the UK? , Beschäftigungs-
crossroads [(krQsrEUdz] 
Schuette: I wanted to broaden my ex- , Scheideweg,
perience, and because I could speak rea- Wendepunkt on autopilot
crossover divide one’s time [)Qn (O:tEU)paIlEt] 
[(krQs)EUvE]  between... and... sonable English, the UK seemed to be fierce [fIEs] 
,  hier: nach einem
, Crossover [dI)vaId wVnz (taIm ,  heftig, hart
the obvious choice. And after working vorgegebenen Schema
(Fusion verschiedener bi)twi:n End] 
incredibly [In(kredEbli] 
Fotos: privat; Gert Krautbauer

Musikstile) ,  abwechselnd in ... for several years, I came to a crossroads. reject sth.
, unglaublich
und ... sein/leben I gave up my job and started studying [ri(dZekt] 
joyful [(dZOIf&l]  ,  etw. ablehnen
classical music at the Guildhall School
,  freudig
of Music and Drama before going on to spare time
Lutheran [(lu:T&rEn]  [)speE (taIm] 
study performance at Goldsmith’s Col- ,  lutherisch; Lutheran- , Freizeit
lege in London. er(in)

46  Business Spotlight 4/2020 BUSINESS SKILLS


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Schuette: I think that’s true. Music is a anti-Brexit. They believe in uniting people The World of Yesterday, he says, “I was sure
unique shared experience and gives us rather than separating them. in my heart from the first of my identity
the sense that, beyond just logic, we are as a citizen of the world.” I think many
all deeply connected. Taylor: As do I. I wish we could have had a young people would agree with him. I
more rational discussion of Brexit before know I do.
Taylor: We are not very good at listen- the referendum. The Republic of Ireland
ing to opinions that differ from our own. ran two very divisive referenda — on
Usually, we simply wait for a pause that abortion and gay marriage. Before each ➻
allows us to say what we think without of the votes, a “Citizens’ Assembly” was What’s your challenge?
really listening to what the other person set up. Ninety-nine people were chosen
Would you like to have
is saying. based on class, gender, age, religion and re- a conversation with Ken
Schuette: It’s all to do with empathy gion. They were given factual information Taylor about your current
and listening for what a person is really on which to base their recommendations work challenges? If so,
send an email with your
about. We constantly listen through a about the legislation to be voted on. This name, company and
filter, which is actively searching for broke the deadlock on two very conten- the subject you would like
to discuss to
confirmation of our preconceived ideas tious issues. business.trainer@
and restricts communication to a certain Schuette: That would have been a bet-
“safe” level. As a performer, you look to ter process for Brexit, in my opinion. In each issue, we will Listen to more tips
build empathy with your But the Brexit referen- choose one reader who from Ken Taylor on
Business Spotlight
audience and create a dum showed how im- will talk to Ken, and the Audio. To order, go
“Music can
dialogue will be published to www.aboshop.
space for openness. portant emotions and in Business Spotlight.
feelings are in decision-
Taylor: I agree. When you provide a making — which is why I
are building any relation-
ship, empathy is key. It re-
common think music can provide a
common language where abortion impact

[E(bO:S&n]  [(ImpÄkt] 
quires openness towards words fail. , Abtreibung ,  Auswirkung(en), Einfluss
and understanding of the
other person’s situation. where words Taylor: Maybe we need
aftermath: in the ~ of...
input [(InpUt] 
, Beitrag
On another topic, do you
feel more German or Brit-
fail” a Citizens’ Assembly in
the aftermath of Brexit
,  in der Zeit nach ...

issue [(ISu:] 
,  Frage, Thema
ish now that you’ve been to recommend a conflict legislation
, Versammlung
here in Britain for so long? resolution process after [)ledZI(sleIS&n] 
audience [(O:diEns]  , Gesetzgebung
Schuette: I’m happy to be both, or either, listening to inputs from experts. It’s about , Zuhörer(innen)
but perhaps because of history, I think making the conflict resolution the prior- preconceived
break a deadlock [)pri:kEn(si:vd] 
many Germans of my age see themselves ity rather than proving who is “right”. It’s [)breIk E (dedlQk]  , vorgefasst
as part of a broader European cultural about being prepared to listen and being ,  eine Pattsituation
rather than
auflösen; hier: etw. zum
space. The great advantage of being a mu- prepared to forgive. It’s about building a [(rA:DE DÄn] 
Durchbruch verhelfen
sician is that you travel. You see other cul- culture of tolerance. ,  anstatt, und nicht
tures. You meet different people. And you Schuette: The British culture is a tolerant [)kQnfE(meIS&n] 
restrict sth.
begin to realize that the stereotypes you one. It’s also hugely influential. It has a lot , Bestätigung
,  etw. beschränken
had in your mind are nonsense, and that to offer the rest of the world. It’s innova- conflict resolution
set (several persons)
we can learn so much from each other. tive, creative and exciting. Its impact on [(kQnflIkt rezE)lu:S&n] 
apart [)set E(pA:t] 
, Konfliktlösung
youth culture everywhere is enormous. ,  hier: (mehrere
Taylor: Indeed. I worked outside the UK contentious Personen) voneinander
[kEn(tenS&s]  unterscheiden
for about 20 years before returning. It Taylor: Perhaps we have to look to the ,  umstritten, strittig
gives you a distance to your own culture. next generation to help the UK to view stereotype
divisive [(steriEtaIp] 
It allows you to see that people every- itself once again as being an integral part [dI(vaIsIv]  , Klischeevorstellung
where have more things in common than of the European cultural space. ,  kontrovers, umstritten
topic [(tQpIk] 
they have things that set them apart. Schuette: I love the writings of Stefan gay marriage , Thema
Schuette: Perhaps that’s why most of my Zweig, who believed in internationalism [)geI (mÄrIdZ] 
unique [ju(ni:k] 
, Homoehe
British musician friends are very much and Europeanism. In his autobiography, ,  einmalig, einzigartig

BUSINESS SKILLS 4/2020 Business Spotlight 47 


u V

w W

X at

as ar al

ap am



LANGUAGE 6. hex key 12. bicycle gearing 18. spoke [spEUk] 

[(heks ki:], [(baIsIk&l )gIErIN], , Speiche
Allen key gears [gIEz] 
19. hub [hVb]
[(ÄlEn ki:] UK, , Gangschaltung
, (Rad-)Nabe

A bicycle repair shop

Allen wrench
13. pedal [(ped&l],
[(ÄlEn rentS] US  20. tyre lever
foot lever [(fUt )li:vE] 
, Inbusschlüssel [(taIE )li:vE] UK,
, Pedal
tire lever
Auf diesen Seiten präsentieren wir 7. tyre [(taIE] UK,
14. mechanic [mE(kÄnIk]  [(taI&r )lev&r*] US 
tire [(taI&r*] US 
nützliche Begriffe aus der Arbeitswelt. , Reifen(mantel)
, Mechaniker(in) , Reifenheber

Von HILDEGARD RUDOLPH  EASY 8. saddle [(sÄd&l] 

15. assembly stand 21. rim [rIm] 
[E(sembli stÄnd], , Felge
, Sattel
workstand [(w§:kstÄnd] 
1 . cyclist [(saIklIst], 4. pliers [(plaIEz] 22. valve [vÄlv]
9. frame [freIm]  , Montageständer
biker [(baIkE]  , Zange , Ventil
, Rahmen
, Fahrradfahrer(in) 16. floor pump
5. adjustable spanner 23. inner tube
10. rear wheel [(flO: pVmp] 
2. brake lever [(breIk )li:vE]  [E)dZVstEb&l (spÄnE] UK, [(InE tju:b] 
[)rIE (wi:&l]  , Standpumpe
Illustration: Mike Ellis

, Bremsgriff monkey wrench , Schlauch

, Hinterrad
[(mVNki rentS] US  17. front wheel
3. bicycle [(baIsIk&l],
, Universal-Schrauben- 11. chain [(tSeIn]  [)frVnt (wi:&l] 
cycle [(saIk&l], * This symbol marks
schlüssel , Kette , Vorderrad
bike [baIk] , Fahrrad standard US pronunciation.

48  Business Spotlight 4/2020 LANGUAGE

Exercise 2: Getting the bike ready
Other useful vocabulary
Nouns Unscramble the words in bold, which are all
back-pedalling brake milometer change gear listed on pages 48–49.
[(bÄk )ped&lIN breIk], [maI(lQmItE] UK, [)tSeIndZ (gIE] 
coaster brake odometer [oU(dA:mEt&r*] , schalten
[(kEUstE breIk]  US , Kilometerzähler
Chris is a(n) (A) nechmiac and
fix a flat tyre the owner of a bicycle repair shop. He also is
, Rücktrittbremse
mudguard [(mVdgA:d], [)fIks E )flÄt (taIE]
bell [bel] , Klingel fender [(fend&r*] US  (tire [(taI&r*] US)  an enthusiastic (B) lyscict , and
, Schutzblech ,  einen platten Reifen this summer, he wants to cross the Alps.
bicycle/bike/cycling helmet
reparieren But before he can start, he has to
[(baIsIk&l/(baIk/(saIklIN pedal bearing(s)
)helmIt]  [(ped&l beErIN(z)]  grease sth. [gri:s]  (C) hovauerl his (D) cicyble
, Fahrradhelm , Tretlager ,  etw. schmieren
. He has already set up the
bicycle (parking) rack/stand puncture [(pVNktSE], overhaul sth. (E) worstdank and got
[(baIsIk&l ()pA:kIN) rÄk/ flat tyre [)flÄt (taIE], [)EUvE(hO:l] 
stÄnd]  flat tire [)flÄt (taI&r*] US  ,  etw. instandsetzen, some tools ready: (F) lipers , a(n)
,  Fahrradständer (zum , Platten überholen (G) xhe eky and a(n) (H) trye
Parken) revel . He has to replace a bro-
(puncture) repair kit pump up the tube
carrier [(kÄriE]  [()pVNktSE) ri(peE kIt], [)pVmp Vp DE (tju:b]  ken (I) kopes and centre the
, Gepäckträger patch kit [(pÄtS kIt]  ,  den Reifen aufpumpen
, Flickzeug
(J) tornf helew . He also has to
chain/combination/ remove sth. [ri(mu:v]  grease the (K) inach and tighten
U-/wheel lock [(tSeIn/ (rechargeable) battery ,  etw. abmontieren
)kQmbI(neIS&n/(ju:/ [(ri:)tSA:dZEb&l) (bÄtri]  the screws under the (L) sedald .
replace sth. [ri(pleIs] 
(wi:&l lQk]  , Akku The (M) daret on the (N) terys
,  etw. auswechseln
, Ketten-/Zahlen-/Bügel-/
roof/rear rack is badly worn, so he needs new
Speichenschloss tighten sth. [(taIt&n] 
[(ru:f/(rIE rÄk]  
,  etw. festdrehen, anziehen ones. He checks the (O) savelv and
child carrier , Dach-/Heckträger
[(tSaI&ld )kÄriE] 
(P) gliths . Finally, he makes sure
spare inner tube that the (Q) chapt tik is com-
, Kindersitz
[)speEr (InE tju:b] 
crossbar [(krQsbA:]  , Reserveschlauch e-bike [(i: baIk]  plete, but he decides to take with him two
, Stange ,  E-Bike, Elektro(fahr)rad (R) repas rinne tebus
sprocket [(sprQkIt] 
derailleur (gear(s)) , Ritzel mountain bike — though he hopes not to have a(n)
[di(reIljE (gIE(z))] 
trailer [(treIlE] 
[(maUntIn baIk]  (S) putcreun .
, Kettenschaltung ,  Geländerad, Mountainbike
, Fahrradanhänger Everything is ready for Chris’s tour now.
front/rear light (für Kinder) pedelec [(pedIlek] 
[)frVnt/)rIE (laIt]  , Pedelec
tread [tred] 
, Vorder-/Rücklicht
, Reifenprofil racing bike [(reIsIN baIk] 
gear lever [(gIE )li:vE]  , Rennrad
, Schalthebel
Verbs roadster [(rEUdstE] 
handlebar(s) , Hollandrad
adjust sth. [E(dZVst] 
[(hÄnd&lbA:(z)]  ,  etw. einstellen tandem [(tÄndEm] 
,  Lenkstange, Lenker
, Tandem
brake [breIk] 
hub gear(s) , bremsen touring bike
[(hVb gIE(z)] 
[(tUErIN baIk] 
, Nabenschaltung centre the wheel
, Tourenrad
[)sentE DE (wi:&l] UK,
kickstand [(kIkstÄnd]  (center [(sent&r*] US)  Answers
,  Fahrradständer (am ,  das Rad ausrichten * This symbol marks S. puncture
Fahrrad) standard US pronunciation. tubes
R. spare inner
Q. patch kit
P. lights
Exercise 1: What is it?
O. valves
Good to know N. tyres
M. tread
Choose the correct options without looking at the vocabulary lists
L. saddle
If you ride a bike, bike or go K. chain
on these two pages.
cycling, you travel on a bi-
J. front wheel
I. spoke
cycle (Fahrrad fahren, radeln). H. tyre lever
A. If you want to repair your bicycle, it is useful to put it on a…
If you go by bike, you take a
G. hex key
1. kickstand. 2. workstand. F. pliers
bicycle to get to a particular E. workstand
B. If you have a flat tyre, you have a… place, such as to work, to the
D. bicycle
C. overhaul
1. puncture. 2. derailleur. underground station or to the B. cyclist
market (mit dem Fahrrad zu ei- A. mechanic
C. Inner tube and tyre are mounted on the… nem Ort fahren). And a (bi)cycle
Exercise 2
1. spoke. 2. rim. ride is a Fahrradausflug. A–2; B–1; C–2
Exercise 1

LANGUAGE 4/2020 Business Spotlight 49 

TRANSLATION Tricky translations
Hier finden Sie englische Wörter, How do you say “revise” in How do you say verrechnen
die man leicht verwechselt, und German? in English?
englische und deutsche Wörter, If you “revise” something, In finance, verrechnen refers to
such as a report or a forecast, amounts that cancel each oth-
deren Übersetzung schwierig ist.
you change it because you er out so that the net effect
MEDIUM have new information (überar- is reduced or the situation

beiten, berichtigen or revidieren): stays the same. In English,
“We have revised our sales this would be offset, set (off)

Don’t confuse... ⋅⋅
MIKE SEYMOUR target because of the recent against or cross-charge:
is an author,
stock market crash.” — Wir Das deutsche Energieunterneh-
trainer and
translator based haben unser Umsatzziel wegen men verrechnet seine Verluste
quota, quote in Leeds, des jüngsten Börsencrashs in Großbritannien mit seinen
If a government imposes a quota, it sets a England. Contact: revidiert. Inlandsgewinnen. — “The

maximum or minimum amount (Quote): com
German energy company
“The government has set a quota If you “revise” a piece of writ- offsets its losses in the UK
for women board members.” — Die ing, you change it by making with its domestic profits.”
Regierung hat eine Quote für weibliche improvements or correcting
Vorstandsmitglieder festgesetzt. mistakes (revidieren, überprüfen Verrechnen mit etwas means “to

or abändern): take into account a part pay-
A quota can also be an amount of some- “The new edition of my ment of a total bill” (offset

thing that is available (Anteil, Kontingent): book has been revised against, count towards, de-

“Travel agents often get a quota of ho- and the typos have been duct from):
tel rooms.” — Reiseveranstalter bekom- corrected.” — Die neue Wir werden Ihre Anzahlung
men oft ein Kontingent an Hotelzimmern. Ausgabe meines Buches wurde mit den Gesamtkosten verrech-
überarbeitet und die Druck- nen. — “We will count your
If you quote a person, you use or repeat fehler wurden korrigiert. down payment towards the

their (exact) words: total costs.”
“My boss likes quoting the manage- forecast. In British English, when you
ment expert Peter Drucker.” — Mein wrong with our “revise” for an exam or test, As a reflexive verb, sich (stark)
Chef zitiert gerne den Management- you study the facts and ma- verrechnen means “to make a
really got our sums
our forecast. / We
Experten Peter Drucker. miscalculated with terials again so that you will serious mathematical mis-
Note: Quote (short for quotation) is also forecast. / We badly
remember them (lernen or take” and is usually translated
used as a noun. It is translated as Zitat. wiederholen). American Eng- as (badly) miscalculate, (re-
mistake with our
B. We made a big

müssen. lish uses “review” or “study”: ally) get one’s sums wrong,

If you give somebody a quote (or quota- “I don’t think I’m going to make a (big) mistake:
Regierung revidieren
Ankündigung der
tion) for a job or contract, you tell them nach der pass the exam. I haven’t re- Wir haben uns stark ver-
how much it will cost (Kostenvoranschlag, vised enough.” — Ich glaube rechnet, als wir unsere Preise

A. Wir werden unsere
(Preis-)Angebot): 2. nicht, dass ich die Prüfung festsetzten. — “We really got
“We got several quotes before we had bestehen werde. Ich habe nicht our sums wrong when we
our kitchen renovated.” — Wir haben
C. quota, quote
B. quote genug gelernt. fixed our prices.”
mehrere Angebote eingeholt, bevor wir A. quote
unsere Küche renovieren ließen. 2. How would you say that?

Translate the following sentences.

1. Make your choice
A. We will have to revise our sales forecasts following the
Complete these sentences with “quota” or “quote”.
government announcement.

A. I asked our CEO for a , to print in the

company magazine.
B. This from our local plumber is far too B. Wir haben uns mit unserer Prognose stark verrechnet.
high for the work.
C. The minister favours an immigration ,
but please don’t me on that.

50  Business Spotlight 4/2020 LANGUAGE

LANGUAGE by Hildegard Rudolph

Grammar Business Spotlight 4/20 Grammar Business Spotlight 4/20

Definite article or possessive pronoun? Definite article or possessive pronoun?

“May I help you into the/your “For some time, he’s had a pain
coat?” in the/his left knee and probably
won’t run the marathon on

Translation Business Spotlight 4/20 Translation Business Spotlight 4/20

Translate this sentence into English. Translate this sentence into German.

Das ist doch kein Weltuntergang, “I’m not a bit sorry for him. You
wenn du die Stelle nicht bekommst. know, the biter will be bitten.”

Word choice Business Spotlight 4/20 Word choice Business Spotlight 4/20

Which of the words in bold are correct? Which of the two words in bold is correct?

“Your design will be a valuable

complement/compliment to “The government increased the
our product range. I’d like to custom/customs on imported
complement/compliment you meat to help domestic farmers.”
on it.”

Business talk Business Spotlight 4/20 Business talk Business Spotlight 4/20

What does the speaker mean? What does the speaker mean?

“I don’t like working on projects “Everyone thinks this agreement

with Denis. He doesn’t give a fig was a sweetheart deal.”
for anything any more.”

Grammar Business Spotlight 4/20 Grammar Business Spotlight 4/20

“For some time, he’s had a pain in the left knee and “May I help you into your coat?”
probably won’t run the marathon on Sunday.”
In English, you usually use the possessive pronoun with
Sometimes, in phrases with a preposition (here “in”) parts of the body and clothes. In German, one would say:
one typically uses the definite article rather than the Darf ich Ihnen in den Mantel helfen?
possessive determiner, particularly when talking about
pains or other unpleasant conditions. The possessive
determiner (here “his”) is not incorrect, however.

Translation Business Spotlight 4/20 Translation Business Spotlight 4/20

Er tut mir kein bisschen leid. Du weißt, wer andern eine Grube “It’s not the end of the world if you don’t get the job.”
gräbt, fällt selbst hinein.
This phrase means that even if something bad happens to
This proverb means that someone who has done wrong to you, this doesn’t mean that it is too serious to cope with.
someone else will be harmed in a similar way. You might
also hear people say “the biter gets bit” or “the biter bit/

Word choice Business Spotlight 4/20 Word choice Business Spotlight 4/20

“Your design will be a valuable complement...

“The government increased the customs…”
I’d like to compliment...”

The taxes charged on imported goods are customs

A complement to sth. is something that goes well with
(duties). Custom means “habit” or “tradition”.
it. To compliment sb. is to make a positive comment on
their performance (or appearance).
customs = Zoll
complement (sth.) = Ergänzung; etw. ergänzen
custom = Brauch; Gewohnheit
compliment (sb. on sth.) = Kompliment, Glückwunsch; jmdm.
für etw. ein Kompliment machen, jmdn. zu etw. beglückwünschen

Business talk Business Spotlight 4/20 Business talk Business Spotlight 4/20

A sweetheart deal is an arrangement that two sides Someone who doesn’t give a fig for sb. or sth. does not
agree on privately and that is in both their interests, care at all.
with no regard for the interests of third parties or society
more generally. not give a fig for sb./sth. ifml. = s ich überhaupt nicht um
jmdn./etw. scheren
sweetheart deal = Amigo-Geschäft, Gefälligkeitsgeschäft


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Oder telefonisch unter +49 (0) 89/95 46 99 55

Sharing Email
knowledge Hi Team
I recently watched a webinar on why it’s
agenda [E(dZendE] 
, Tagesordnung

Teilt man sein Wissen im Team, lassen sich important to share knowledge within a team.
dadurch Produktivität und Miteinander Following the advice from that webinar, I’d like to , Herangehensweise
verbessern. Lesen Sie hier auf Englisch, share the key takeaways with you. The five main
brief: be ~ with sth.
points were that sharing knowledge can:

wie Sie Informationen wirksam teilen. [bri:f] 
improve team productivity ,  sich mit etw. kurzhalten

EASY  AUDIO  PLUS strengthen relationships collaboration
deepen your own knowledge of a topic [kE)lÄbE(reIS&n] 

help to avoid errors being repeated , Zusammenarbeit
create a culture of sharing and collaboration error [(erE] 
, Fehler
With these points in mind, I’d like to set up a
structured approach to knowledge-sharing within follow-up
the team. Please think about how we might [(fQlEU Vp] 
structure this most effectively. ,  Folge-, Anschluss-

highlight sth.
I’m adding this point to the agenda for next week’s [(haIlaIt] 
team meeting. ,  etw. hervorheben

Thanks memorable
Marcel [(memErEb&l] 
, einprägsam


Presentation , Erinnerung

Marcel: Hi, everyone. As you know, I recent- [(teIkE)weI] 
ly watched a webinar on why it’s important to ,  hier: Erkenntnis

share knowledge within a team and I shared tasked: be ~ with sth.

those ideas with you in an email. Last week, [(tA:skt] 
,  die Aufgabe für etw.
there was a follow-up webinar on how to share übertragen bekommen
information effectively.
topic [(tQpIk] 
They shared five main ideas in the webinar. , Thema
First, set the context in a clear and understand- webinar [(webInA:] 
MIKE HOGAN able way. Then, be brief with the amount of in- , Web-Seminar
is a co-author of Business English
for Beginners A1 + A2 and Basis for formation you’re sharing. Third, highlighting
Business B1 + B2 (Cornelsen). something important or surprising can make it
Contact: more memorable. Fourth, offer a clear next step,
such as how the team can use this knowledge to

improve. And finally, offer further information,
very team is only as good as the sum of its parts. help or support to anyone who might need it.
And when you have knowledge that can bene- For me, it was interesting to learn that sharing
fit the rest of the team, it’s important to share it. knowledge in a team can help to avoid or reduce
Both team productivity and relationships can the repetition of errors made by a team. I know
improve as a result. And because people have this makes sense, but it’s good to have such a
little time, it is essential to share your knowl- clear reminder. AUDIO + PLUS
edge effectively. So, I’d like to suggest that we use these five
You can try our
points and regularly share knowledge in our exercises on this
weekly team meetings. A different person could topic on Business
Spotlight Audio
be tasked with sharing something each week.
as well as in our
What do you think? exercise booklet,
Business Spotlight
As you read the following email and presentation, If you have any questions about the webinars Plus. To order, go
look for three things that Marcel does in each case to or would like further information on this, just let to www.aboshop.
share his knowledge effectively. me know.

54  Business Spotlight 4/2020 LANGUAGE

Useful phrases for
sharing knowledge
A.  Providing background

I saw this presentation recently

and thought of you.
I wanted to follow up on our

recent conversation.
I found some information that

you might find useful.
I was on a training course re-
cently and want to let you know

what I learned.
I watched an interesting webi-
nar last week.

B. Explaining the key points
The main point is…

The main takeaways were…
The key information is…

Time to share: The most important thing is…
make things clear
for everyone The quick version is…

C. Explaining the relevance
This is important because…

I looked into this because…
Answer Grammar If we focus on this, we might be
Using the past simple
Here are three things that able to…
Marcel does in his email to
share his knowledge effec-
to give background This is relevant because…

information D.  Giving important or surprising

⋅⋅ ⋅⋅⋅⋅
He gives a clear and simple It is helpful to give others What surprised me most was…

⋅⋅ ⋅⋅⋅⋅
introduction. background information It was interesting to learn that…
He uses short bullet points to the ideas or knowledge I didn’t expect to see that…
to explain the essential that you wish to share with This will also be useful for any-

information. them. To do this, you can use one who…
He clearly proposes a next the past simple to talk about KEY TIPS!

step. things that happened or that Have a clear E. Offering support
you have done. Look at these understanding If you have any questions, just
of both why it is

And here are three things that examples from Marcel’s email important to share let me know.
Marcel does in his presenta- and presentation: knowledge in your I’d be happy to discuss this with
team and how to

⋅⋅ ⋅⋅
tion to share his knowledge share knowledge you further.
effectively: I recently watched a effectively. We could discuss this again at

⋅⋅ ⋅⋅ ⋅⋅
webinar. Share knowledge next week’s meeting.
He gives a short summary I shared those ideas with clearly, simply and Here are some good books on

⋅⋅ ⋅⋅
at the beginning. you in an email. often. this topic.

He presents the five points There was a follow-up Create a culture of

clearly, highlighting the webinar. sharing with your
Fotos: PeopleImages/; privat

team; encourage
important point about They shared five main others to share bullet point summary
avoiding the repetition of ideas. information, too. [(bUlIt pOInt]  [(sVmEri] 
• , Aufzählungspunkt , Zusammenfassung

mistakes. Celebrate team follow up on sth. trace sth. back to sth.
He proposes a next step successes that can
[)fQlEU (Vp Qn]  [)treIs (bÄk tu] 
and offers help at the end. be traced back to
,  auf etw. zurückkommen ,  etw. auf etw.
knowledge that was
shared effectively. zurückführen
look into sth. [)lUk (Intu] 
,  etw. (über)prüfen

LANGUAGE 4/2020 Business Spotlight 55 



is an editor at

If there is no auxiliary verb, use “do”/“does”/“did”: Business Spotlight.
I didn’t get the invitation. Contact:
Zum Verneinen einer Aussage gibt es im t.vandenberg@
Englischen verschiedene Möglichkeiten, wie If there is an auxiliary verb, add “not” or “n’t” before

TENLEY VAN DEN BERG hier erklärt. the main verb. The verb “be” acts as an auxiliary verb:
I couldn’t get hold of them. [E(f§:mEtIv] 
EASY  PLUS Jon isn’t here. , bejahend


Use “not” + “to”-infinitive: [)ÄmbI(gju:Eti] 
,  Zwei-, Mehrdeutigkeit
It’s important not to dominate a meeting.
Amira’s team is having its first videoconference come up [)kVm (Vp] 
,  hier: zur Sprache
since all the team members started working from When verbs such as “seem” and “expect” are fol- kommen
home. lowed by infinitives, the negation is typically shifted
to these verbs. This is also the case with verbs like [)eksklE(meIS&n] 

Amira: Hello? Hello! Isn’t it nice to see everyone! “think”, “believe”, “suppose” or “imagine”: , Ausruf
Are we all here? My headphones don’t seem to work. get hold of sb.
Eric: No, Jon isn’t here, and neither is Meg. I don’t think you can hear me. [)get (hEUld Qv]  ifml.
,  jmdn. erreichen
Bale:  Weren’t they sent the meeting invitation?

Amy: I couldn’t get hold of them. “No” can be used to negate nouns or “-ing” forms: give a thumbs up
[)gIv E )TVmz (Vp] ifml. 
Bale: Eric, didn’t you speak to Jon yesterday? I’ve got no audio. ,  (durch Heben des
Eric:  Yes, I did. The meeting didn’t come up. The boss allows no working at the weekend. Daumens) Einverständnis
Amy: I’ll give them a quick call, but I don’t ex-
pect any answer. “Some” is typically used in affirmative statements invert sth. [In(v§:t] 
,  (die Reihenfolge von)

Bale:  Wouldn’t it be nice if we could talk in and “any” in negative statements and questions: etw. umkehren
turns? I expect some technical problems.
unplug sth. [)Vn(plVg] 
Rosa: I don’t think you can hear me, can you? I don’t expect any technical problems. ,  etw. ausstecken,
I’ve got no audio. ausstöpseln
Amira: [gives a thumbs up] We can hear you. Why It’s far more typical to use “neither” (or more formally
don’t you try unplugging your head- “nor”) or “not … either” than “also not”. With “neither”,

phones? [mimes unplugging headphones] the subject and auxiliary verb are inverted:
Rosa: My headphones don’t seem to work. Jon isn’t here, and neither is Meg.
Amy: Meg didn’t answer, but Jon should be You can try our
exercises on this
joining us any… Negative questions are formed with auxiliary verb + topic in our exercise
Jon: Sorry. I didn’t get the invitation. “n’t” + subject + main verb. They are used: booklet, Business
Spotlight Plus. To
Amira: I don’t expect any technical problems, so 1. To seek confirmation of something you believe order, go to www.

why don’t we get started? has happened or think is true: aboshop.spotlight-
Didn’t you speak to Jon yesterday?
2. To express surprise and to seek confirmation that

Exercise: On the contrary something has not happened or is not true: Answers
Weren’t they sent the meeting invitation?

Negate the following statements and questions. 3. To make rhetorical questions: have any experience
Why don’t we get started? have any / do not

4. To express opinions in a polite way:
E. I have no / don’t
A. Did you get the invitation? Yes, I did. be easier.
Wouldn’t it be nice if we could talk in turns? the next meeting will

5. To make polite invitations:
D. I don’t / do not think
B. I expect to have problems with the team. success.
Won’t you come in? wasn’t / was not a
C. Our first videoconference was a success.

C. Our first
Exclamations can look like negative questions: team.
Isn’t it nice to see everyone! problems with the
D. I think the next meeting will be easier.
expect to have any
B. I don’t / do not
Use “yes” to answer negative questions in the affirm- didn’t / did not.
E. I have experience coordinating meetings. ative and “no” in the negative. To avoid ambiguity,
invitation? No, I
Foto: privat

A. Didn’t you get the

include a subject pronoun and auxiliary: contrary
Yes, I did. / No, I didn’t.
Exercise: On the

56  Business Spotlight 4/2020 LANGUAGE


In times of trouble...
Das Coronavirus ist nicht nur für unsere Gesundheit, sondern auch
für die Wirtschaft lebensbedrohlich. IAN MCMASTER hat Details
zu Auswirkungen und Rettungsmaßnahmen.

few weeks ago, I received a com- IAN MCMASTER
because their incomes had been cut through losing their jobs
ment from a friend about the is editor-in-chief or being put on unpaid leave (“furloughed”) or short-time work.
coronavirus crisis. It read: “If cap- of Business The key challenge has been to maintain liquidity in the per-
italism is so great, how come it sonal sector, the corporate sector and the banking sector. Cash
has to be bailed out by socialism flow is king. This explains policies such as higher sickness and
every ten years?” Amusing — and Contact: unemployment benefits, grants and loans to individuals and
close to the truth. i.mcmaster@ firms, deferred tax payments, “mortgage holidays”, tax cuts, and
There are many lessons to be short-time work programmes that subsidize wages and salaries.
learned from the crisis, but one stands As governments do “whatever it takes” to avoid a depression,
out. The private sector, for all its power borrowing restrictions are (rightly) thrown out the window, in-
of innovation and wealth creation, can- cluding Germany’s “black zero” (see Business Spotlight 2/2020).
not solve serious economic crises. With- Spending and borrowing (rightly) go through the roof. And the
out a strong and well-functioning state, money supply is (rightly) increased as if there were no tomor-
everything collapses. (Even in the good row. As The Economist wrote: “This is no time to fret about gov-
times, the state plays a much bigger role in ernment debt.” That time will come later.
wealth creation than free-market extrem- There’s another important insight from the current crisis.
ists believe. See The Entrepreneurial State: Those doing some of the most critical jobs — healthcare workers,
Debunking Public vs. Private Sector Myths by cleaners, supermarket workers and so on — often have the low-
economist Mariana Mazzucato.) est pay and status. One can only hope that this will be remem-
As during the global financial crisis bered and acted on once the acute crisis is past. I have my doubts.
(GFC) of 2007–8, governments and cen-
tral banks have stepped in to stop their
economies from going into freefall. There bail sb./sth. out fret about sth. short-time work
[)beI&l (aUt]  [(fret E)baUt]  [)SO:t taIm (w§:k] 
is a key difference, however. The GFC be- ,  jmdn./etw. (durch Hilfs- ,  sich über etw. aufregen , Kurzarbeit
gan as a financial crisis, which then caused maßnahmen) retten
furloughed [(f§:lEUd]  stand out [)stÄnd (aUt] 
a collapse in demand in the real economy. contain sth. [kEn(teIn]  , beurlaubt , hervorstechen
The current situation is a health crisis, ,  hier: etw. eindämmen
grant [)grA:nt]  subsidize sth.
which first hit the economy’s supply side. AUDIO
corporate [(kO:pErEt]  ,  Zuschuss, Finanzhilfe [(sVbsEdaIz] 
Fotos: Trebor/; Gert Krautbauer

Supply chains were disrupted, workers , Unternehmens- ,  etw. subventionieren

You can hear money supply
were off sick and large sectors of the econ- Ian McMaster debunk sth. [(mVni sE)plaI]  supply [sE(plaI] 
talking about the [)di:(bVNk]  , Geldmenge , Lieferung; hier: Angebot
omy were shut down by governments in coronavirus crisis ,  etw. entlarven
an attempt to contain the coronavirus. and other news mortgage holiday supply chain [sE(plaI
topics on Business deferred [di(f§:d]  [(mO:gIdZ )hQlEdeI]  tSeIn] , Lieferkette
This supply-side shock quickly became Spotlight Audio. To ,  aufgeschoben, latent ,  Aufschub von Hypo-
a demand-side problem. Companies order, go to www. whatever it takes
aboshop.spotlight- disrupt sth. [dIs(rVpt]  [wQt)evEr It (teIks] 
cut their investment and hiring plans, ,  etw. stören, off sick: be ~ [)Qf (sIk]  ,  was auch immer
and consumers reduced their spending unterbrechen ,  krankgeschrieben sein erforderlich ist

LANGUAGE 4/2020 Business Spotlight 57 


Viktoria’s secret JAMES SCHOFIELD

is a writer,
Ein Tastaturklick – und ein Vermögen kann business coach and
podcaster. You can
sich über das Internet in Luft auflösen. Wie
listen to his pod-
– das demonstriert eine junge Dame sehr cast “Behind the
eindrucksvoll. Von JAMES SCHOFIELD bottom line” at
MEDIUM AUDIO james-schofield8

agenda [E(dZendE] 
, Tagesordnung

CEO (chief executive

officer) [)si: i: (EU] 
, Firmenchef(in)

chairman [(tSeEmEn] 
, Vorsitzender

consultant [kEn(sVltEnt] 
, Berater(in)
ick Samuel, head of HR at Topfoods plc, looked “You need better firewalls, email encryption soft- embarrassing
nervously around the room at the other com- ware, an operating system upgrade, regular network [Im(bÄrEsIN] , peinlich
pany directors. The topic of cybersecurity was scans, longer passwords and cybersecurity training encryption [In(krIpS&n] 
on the agenda, and he knew — because the IT for everybody. To fix everything and get you proper- , Verschlüsselung
consultant he’d hired, Viktoria Orlova, had ly protected, two per cent of last year’s turnover is a estimate [(estImEt] 
told him — that the company’s IT security was good estimate. After that, about one per cent of turn- , Schätzung

pathetic. But would the chairman, Jerome Jones, be over every year.” fix sth. [fIks] 
willing to spend the money necessary to fix it? “I’m not sure we could get that much approved,” ,  etw. beheben

*** he said. Viktoria shrugged her shoulders. HR (human resources)

[)eItS (A:] 
“Topfoods is like a glasshouse with a monkey holding “Whatever. It’s not my company, Nick. I’m just
, Personalwesen
a machine gun inside it,” Viktoria had warned him a your cyber cleaning lady.” She paused to wipe the
mess sth. up [)mes (Vp] 
couple of weeks earlier. “Any hacker could blow Top- screen of her computer with disinfectant, rather ,  etw. durcheinander-
foods to pieces in a couple of minutes.” theatrically. “This, in case you didn’t know, is not how bringen
Viktoria’s tendency to speak her mind did not you deal with computer viruses.” Orlova [O:(lEUvE] 
make her a lot of friends. Her dark-blue eyes had a “All right,” said Nick. “I understand. Perhaps we ,  (Wortspiel, klingt wie:
all over)
cool, analytical look that gave people the impression can find a way to convince JJ and the directors. But
she was scanning them for character defects. you’ll need to help me…” pathetic [pE(TetIk] 
, erbärmlich
“What could a hacker do to us?” Nick had asked. ***
Viktoria sighed. “How to explain cybersecurity After Nick had finished explaining the problems and plc (public limited
company) [)pi: el (si:]
to people who couldn’t tell the difference between how much it would cost to fix them, the other board UK ,  etwa: AG
a phishing attack and an SQL injection attack,” she members exchanged doubtful looks. shrug one’s shoulders
wondered. JJ leaned back in his chair and said, “Nick, have [)SrVg wVnz (SEUldEz] 
“They could remove money from your bank ac- you lost your mind? Your consultant Veronica ,  mit den Achseln zucken

counts. Mess up your logistics. Publish embarrassing ‘Orlova-the-place’ has just given you a shopping list speak one’s mind
[)spi:k wVnz (maInd] 
emails from your CEO.” of services she wants you to buy!”
Fotos: zim286, WesAbrams, Eric Isselée/; privat

,  seine Meinung sagen

“Why would anyone do some- “Viktoria, not Veronica, JJ,” said Nick, ignoring
SQL injection
IS LIKE A thing like that?” asked Nick.
“For fun! And let’s face it, your
the laughter from the rest of the board. “I thought
you might feel that way, so we decided to do a little
[)es kju: el In(dZekS&n] 
, SQL-Einschleusung

GLASSHOUSE chairman — what do you call him,

JJ, right? — he’s a bit of a joke, isn’t
Viktoria walked in, sat down next to Nick and con-
(Ausnutzen von
Sicherheits­lücken in

WITH A MONKEY he? Cyber-punks love taking nected her laptop to a large screen on the wall.
take sb. down

HOLDING A down egoistical CEOs.”

“But how much would it cost
“Last week, I hired an ethical hacker friend of mine
to attack Topfoods in three places,” she told them.
[)teIk (daUn] , jmdm.
einen Dämpfer versetzen

MACHINE GUN us to secure our systems?” asked

Nick, ignoring Viktoria’s view
“He’s going to show you what he can do to your com-
pany. First of all, let’s see what’s happening to your
topic [(tQpIk] , Thema

INSIDE IT” of JJ. money.”

turnover [(t§:n)EUvE] 
, Umsatz

58  Business Spotlight 4/2020 LANGUAGE

“There’s nothing wrong with the accounts,” said Ei-
leen, the company accountant, defensively. “I’d have THERE WAS link took you to a website set up
by our hacker that installed a key-
“Oh, what’s happening here?” said Viktoria. The
A SUDDEN logger on your computer to track
your keystrokes. The hacker now
, Buchhalter(in)

blank: go ~ [blÄNk] 
screen showed one of the company’s bank accounts. MOVEMENT knows all your passwords.”
, erlöschen; hier: schwarz
“I think a bank transfer is about to start.”
“Can’t happen,” said Eileen. “Only I can authorize UNDER THE “Ah!” said Viktoria. The screen
showed JJ’s computer desktop
Christmas pudding
[)krIsmEs (pUdIN]  UK
a…” she stopped as the figures on the bank account
suddenly started to move downwards.
TABLE, AND THE with all its folders.
“Let’s see: ‘Strategy’, ‘Perfor-
, Weihnachtspudding,

“Oops,” said Viktoria. “Looks like £150,000 has just SCREEN WENT mance Reviews’. But what’s in- cruise [kru:z] 
, Kreuzfahrt
gone for a walk. I wonder where? You had better see
if you can find it, Eileen!” BLANK side this little sub-folder with
pictures?” dot [dQt] , Punkt

Eileen made a small noise and rushed off. There was a sudden move- folder [(fEUldE] 
, Ordner
“Now,” continued Viktoria, “what about this?” ment under the table, and the screen went blank.
The screen changed to show a map of the UK with “Right,” said a red-faced JJ as he stood up, holding a freelance: be ~ [(fri:lA:ns] 
,  freiberuflich tätig sein
red dots moving across it. cable in his hand. “You two. In my office. Now!”
keylogger [(ki:)lQgE] 
“Here are Topfoods’ lorries taking shipments all *** ,  Keylogger (Hard- oder
over the country,” she said. “Now, this one,” a circle “It’s a pity you’re leaving us,” said Nick to Vikto- Software zur Protokollie-
appeared around one of the dots, “is taking Christ- ria later as she was signing a very detailed non- rung von Tastatureingaben)
mas puddings to London. Destination: Harrods in disclosure agreement. “I was hoping you’d join us keystroke [(ki:strEUk] 
Knightsbridge. Right, Ted?” full-time. Somebody has to implement all those , Tastenanschlag

“Yes,” answered the head of logistics nervously. changes JJ has just agreed to.” non-disclosure agreement
[)nQn dIs(klEUZE
“How do you know that?” “I prefer being freelance,” she replied. “But I’ll tell
Viktoria ignored him. “Oh, dear,” she said. “It looks my hacker friend to contact you about the job.” , Verschwiegenheits-
like it’s changed its mind.” The dot started moving in “Thanks. Anyway, I liked working with you.” erklärung
the opposite direction. “Interesting! Your driver has “Me, too. But, you know, …whatever.” oh, dear [)EU (dIE] , oje
just received a new address — he’s delivering them to She shook his hand, then looked him in the face. performance review
me instead. Yummy!” “I have to tell you something,” she said. “When [pE(fO:mEns ri)vju:] 
, Mitarbeitergespräch,
“Please,” begged Ted. “Please stop it! That’s our you first hired me, I wanted to find out what sort of
first major order for Harrods.” person you were, so I hacked into your laptop.”
track sth. [trÄk] 
“Sorry, Ted. It’s the hacker, not me. Try giving your Nick felt his face going red. ,  etw. (nach)verfolgen
driver a call. Now, Mr Jones, let’s see what a hacker “Don’t worry; I can keep your secret,” she said.
yummy [(jVmi] ifml. 
could find on your computer…” Nick’s face went even redder. , lecker
“How’s she doing this?” JJ whispered to Nick. “But I just wanted to say: I think you write very
“It's not Viktoria, JJ,” Nick replied. “Last week, you good poetry. You should try and get it published
clicked on a link that said you’d won a cruise. The someday.” Then she left.
You can listen to
this short story on
Business Spotlight
Exercise: Reading comprehension M Audio. To order,
go to www.aboshop.
How well did you understand our short story? Test yourself with these questions.
A. Why is cybersecurity a problem for Topfoods? exploit it.
cybersecurity, not to

weaknesses in their
where they have
to show them
B. Why doesn’t JJ like what Nick tells him?
hacks a company
C. An “ethical hacker”
implement Viktoria’s
very expensive to
B. Because it would be
C. What is the difference between an “ethical hacker” and an ordinary hacker? by hackers.

vulnerable to attack
A. Because their IT is
Exercise: Reading

LANGUAGE 4/2020 Business Spotlight 59 

ENGLISH FOR… audience [(O:diEns] 
, Zuhörer(innen),

audition [O:(dIS&n] 
, vorspielen

ballet [(bÄleI] 
,  [wg. Aussprache]
Für Musikerinnen und Musiker gibt es viele verschiedene busker [(bVskE] 
Möglichkeiten, ihre Kunst auszuüben. Wichtige englische , Straßenmusikant(in)

Begriffe dazu finden Sie auf diesen beiden Seiten. carve out a niche for
oneself [)kA:v aUt E (ni:S
MEDIUM fE wVn)self] 
,  sich eine Nische schaffen

church service
[(tS§:tS )s§:vIs] 
, Gottesdienst

command a fee
[kE)mA:nd E (fi:] 
,  ein Honorar verlangen

,  (Wett-)Kampf

, Konservatorium

fierce [fIEs] 
,  heftig, hart
n 2019, there were 52,000 musicians employed in audience. Competition for a good spot can be very
the UK, a number that has been increasing over fierce, and if someone wants to perform in an area funeral [(fju:n&rEl] 
, Begräbnis
the past few years. But unless you are a famous with a lot of tourists, such as Covent Garden in Lon-
gig [gIg] ifml. , Auftritt
rock star with chart-topping success or a well- don, they must first audition. Only if they are accept-
known concert pianist whose performances are ed will they be given a popular performance spot. For headline act
[(hedlaIn Äkt] 
sold out across the world, you are unlikely to get some talented musicians, busking can provide a way ,  Hauptgruppe, -band
rich as a musician. to kick-start their professional career.
in advance [)In Ed(vA:ns] 
Despite this, many people are able to make a de- And then there’s teaching. As well as those who ,  im Voraus
cent living playing music. Although many musicians teach full-time in schools, colleges or conservatories, kick-start sth. [(kIk stA:t] 
are self-employed, there are some possibilities for many musicians offer private music lessons in order ,  etw. in Gang setzen
regular employment. Most full-time positions for to supplement their income or simply because they make a decent living
musicians are found in performing arts companies, want to share their passion with their students. [)meIk E )di:s&nt (lIvIN] 
,  ein anständiges
and to a lesser extent, in educational institutes and
Einkommen erzielen
religious organizations.
resident [(rezIdEnt] 
State or national theatres have a permanent or- Exercise: Take note of word pairs M ,  hier: fest engagiert
chestra that provides the music for ballets, operas
supplement sth.
and musicals. Radio stations, television studios and 1. Join the words to make word pairs, which all [(sVplIment] , etw.
even some clubs often have a resident band. Certain have something to do with making music. ergänzen, aufbessern
types of restaurants, bars and hotels might employ tip [tIp] , Trinkgeld;
a musician to provide background music or after- A. double 1. kit hier: kleine Spende
dinner entertainment. B. drum 2. stand tour promoter
When it comes to gigs, headline acts often get a C. grand 3. band [(tUE prE)mEUtE] 
, Tourneeveranstalter(in)
percentage of ticket sales and door money taken on D. music 4. piano
venue [(venju:] 
the night at the venue, or they might be paid by the E. brass 5. bass , Veranstaltungsort
tour promoter. Support bands get themselves known
voluntarily [)vQlEn(terEli] 
by having their name printed on ads and posters un- , ehrenamtlich
2. Now translate them into German.
der the headline act.
Musicians may play for church services voluntari-
A. Answers
ly, but they usually command a fee for playing at wed- E. Blaskapelle
dings and funerals. Many bands and musicians that B. D. Notenständer

play at weddings have managed to carve out a niche

C. Flügel
C. B. Schlagzeug
for themselves and are often booked out months in 2. A. Kontrabass
1. A–5; B–1; C–4; D–2;
Buskers, who often prefer to be called “street mu- E. word pairs
sicians”, usually play in the street for tips from the
Exercise: Take note of

60  Business Spotlight 4/2020 LANGUAGE

is an ELT ma-
terials author
and business
English train-
er. She writes
lesson plans for
Macmillan’s www.
and for Business

Busking: the
acoustics are

Useful vocabulary
VERBS sign up with a record major [(meIdZE] 
label , Dur Don’t forget to put
amplify sth. “the” before the name
Expand your vocabulary with these [(ÄmplIfaI] 
[saIn )Vp wID E
(rekO:d )leIb&l] 
minor [(maInE]  of an instrument:
, Moll
terms relating to musicians and the ,  etw. (elektronisch) ,  einen Vertrag mit einer ● I used to play the
verstärken Plattenfirma abschließen musical notation cymbals (Becken) in
music business. [)mju:zIk&l nEU(teIS&n]  my school band.
appear at a festival support (another band)
[E)pIEr Ät E (festIv&l]  , Notenschrift I would love to be
[sE(pO:t]  ●

support act ,  auf einem Festival ,  als Vorgruppe (einer (musical) score able to play the
[sE(pO:t Äkt]  auftreten anderen Band) spielen [()mju:zIk&l) (skO:]  violin (Geige).
artist [(A:tIst]  ,  Vorgruppe, -band  , Partitur
, Künstler(in)
book (an act) [(bUk]  tune (an instrument)
,  (eine Band/Show) [tju:n]  note [nEUt] 
band member
[(bÄnd )membE] 
PLACES buchen ,  (ein Instrument) , Note ➻
edit (the sound) [(edIt]  stimmen
, Bandmitglied backstage quaver [(kweIvE]  FOR MORE
[)bÄk(steIdZ]  ,  (den Sound) nach- , Achtel(note) INFORMATION
busker[(bVskE]  ,  Backstage, hinter den bearbeiten, abmischen MUSICAL NOTATION
, Straßenmusikant(in) Kulissen rest [rest] 
go on stage b [bi:]  , Pausenzeichen
conductor concert hall [)gEU Qn (steIdZ]  , h The UK’s professional
[kEn(dVktE]  [(kQnsEt hO:l]  ,  auf die Bühne gehen, rhythm [(rIDEm]  body for musicians:
, Dirigent(in) auftreten bar [bA:]  , Rhythmus
, Konzertsaal
,  Takt, Taktstrich
headline act go on tour scale [skeI&l]  The US’s professional
dressing room
[(hedlaIn Äkt]  [)gEU Qn (tUE]  bass clef , Tonleiter body for musicians:
[(dresIN ru:m] 
,  Hauptgruppe, -band, ,  auf Tournee gehen [)beIs (klef]
, Künstlergarderobe semiquaver
Headliner , Bassschlüssel Read London’s
gig [gIg]  ifml. improvise (sth.) [(semi)kweIvE] 
beats per minute (bpm) “Buskers’ Code” here:
performer , Auftritt [(ImprEvaIz]  , Sechzehntel(note)
[)bi:ts pE (mInIt]
[pE(fO:mE]  ,  (etw.) improvisieren
orchestra pit ,  Schläge pro Minute, set [set]  busk-in-london
, darstellende(r)
[(O:kIstrE pIt]  mix sth. [mIks]  Metronomzahl ,  Songfolge (für den Read more about
, Orchestergraben ,  etw. mischen, Auftritt einer Band) church musicians:
producer [prE(dju:sE]  abmischen b-flat [(bi: flÄt] 
sharp www.churchmusicians.
, Produzent(in) pubs and clubs , b
play (a gig) [pleI]  [SA:p]   org
[)pVbz En (klVbz] 
promoter ,  spielen, auftreten chord [kO:d]  ,  um einen Halbton
,  Kneipen und Clubs
[prE(mEUtE]  , Akkord erhöht
, Veranstalter(in), recording studio practise (etw.)
[(prÄktIs]  crotchet [(krQtSIt] UK, sheet music
Promoter(in) [ri(kO:dIN )stju:diEU] 
,  (etw.) üben quarter note [(Si:t )mju:zIk] 
,  Ton-, Aufnahmestudio
roadie [(rEUdi]  ifml. [(kwO:tE nEUt]   , Musiknoten;
, Roadie stage [steIdZ]  record a song , Viertel(note) Notenblatt
, Bühne [ri)kO:d E (sQN] 
soloist [(sEUlEUIst]  ,  ein Lied aufnehmen d-sharp [(di: SA:p]  time [taIm] 
, Solist(in) stage door , dis , Takt
[)steIdZ (dO:]  rehearse (sth.) [ri(h§:s] 
Fotos: track5/; privat

sound technician ,  (etw.) einüben, proben flat treble clef

,  Bühnen-, Künstler-
[(saUnd tek)nIS&n]  [flÄt]  [)treb&l (klef] 
, Tontechniker(in)
venue [(venju:] 
release sth. [ri(li:s] 
,  etw. herausbringen
,  um einen Halbton
, Violinschlüssel ➻
street artist , Veranstaltungsort tune You can practise your
remix sth. [)ri:(mIks]  key [ki:]  [tju:n]   vocabulary at
[(stri:t )A:tIst] 
,  einen Remix von etw. , Tonart , Melodie
, Straßenkünstler(in)
aufnehmen de/vocabulary

LANGUAGE 4/2020 Business Spotlight 61 


Problems at a restaurant KEN TAYLOR

is a communication
consultant and
Mit Ihrer Tischreservierung ist offensichtlich etwas schiefgelaufen. Wie Sie dennoch author of 50 Ways
zu Ihrem Abendessen kommen, erfahren Sie hier in kurzen Dialogen. to Improve Your
Business English
MEDIUM  AUDIO  PLUS (Lulu Publishing).

Waiting for the main course apologize [E(pQlEdZaIz] 

,  sich entschuldigen
Jules: Those starters were great. Where did you
as luck would have it
find this place, Mike?
[Äz )lVk wUd (hÄv It] 
Michael: On a restaurant review website. It said ,  durch einen glücklichen
that the food was good but that the ser- Zufall
vice was not always the best. chef [Sef] , Koch/Köchin
Jules: So far, it’s lived up to its reputation. The clam [klÄm] 
starters were delicious, but it’s taking , (Venus-)Muschel

Dining out: a very long time for the main course to cod [kQd] , Kabeljau
it doesn’t come. cross-contamination
always go
as planned
May: Perhaps the kitchen is struggling with our [)krQs kEn)tÄmI(neIS&n] 
, Kreuz-Kontamination
different dietary demands.
Zara: Any good kitchen should be able to man- dairy-free [)deEri (fri:] 
,  ohne Verwendung von
The reservation age that. Milchprodukten
Maître d’: Good evening, sir. Do you have a reserva- Michael: True. We went to a local restaurant last
dessert [di(z§:t] 
tion? week, and every dish on the menu had ,  [wg. Aussprache]
Michael: Yes, under the name Johnson. It was a ta- symbols showing whether it was gluten- dietary [(daIEtEri] 
ble for four at 7.30. or dairy-free, vegetarian or vegan. , Ernährungs-
Maître d’: I’m terribly sorry, sir, but I can’t find your Jules: Well, whatever the reason, we’ve been gluten-intolerant: be ~
reservation in our system. waiting half an hour now. [)glu:t&n In(tQlErEnt] 
,  kein Gluten vertragen,
Michael: That’s strange. I booked online about a Michael: I’ll find out what’s happening… Excuse me.
eine Glutenunverträglich-
week ago. Could you check on our orders, please? It’s keit haben
Maître d’: Perhaps you entered the wrong date, sir. been quite a while. live up to sth. [)lIv (Vp tu] 
Michael: I thought I’d checked. But do you have a Server: I’m sorry you’ve been kept waiting. Your ,  etw. gerecht werden
table anyway? food will be here shortly. main course [)meIn (kO:s] 
Maître d’: We are fully booked tonight. But as luck , Hauptgang
would have it, we’ve just had a cancella- The main course maitre d’ [)meItrE (di:] 
tion. So, we should be able to fit you and Server: The pork loin for you, sir, and the cod for , Oberkellner(in)

your party in, but it won’t be until eight you, madam. This is the gluten-free chick- menu [(menju:] 
o’clock. en dish. And here’s the seafood risotto. , Speisekarte

Michael: That’s fine. Thank you for fitting us in. Michael: Thank you. It looks delicious. mix-up [(mIks Vp] ifml. 
, Verwechslung
Maître d’: Perhaps you’d like to have a drink at the May: This cod is cooked perfectly.
bar while you are waiting. Jules: And the sauce on the pork is delicious. on the house
[)Qn DE (haUs] 
Michael: Oh, no! This risotto has clams in it! ,  auf Kosten des Hauses
Ordering Zara: No! After you specifically asked about it.
party [(pA:ti] 
Server: Are you ready for me to take your orders? Michael: I’ll call the server over… I’m afraid this dish ,  hier: Gesellschaft
Zara: May I ask you a quick question first, contains clams. I’ll have to send it back. pork loin [(pO:k lOIn] 
please? I’m gluten-intolerant. Is there any­ Server: I do apologize, sir. There must have been a , Schweinelende
Foto: JackF/; Gert Krautbauer

thing I can eat on this menu? I’m particu- misunderstanding. I’ll tell the chef imme- review [ri(vju:] 
larly worried about cross-contamination. diately. I’ll bring some more bread while , Bewertung
Server: I understand. I’m sure we can find some- you are waiting. server [(s§:vE] US 
thing suitable. I’ll check with the chef. *** , Kellner(in)

Michael: And could you please ask the chef about Maître d’: Here’s your risotto without clams, sir. As starter [(stA:tE] 
the seafood risotto? I’m allergic to clams. there were some delays in serving you and , Vorspeise

Does the risotto include those? a mix-up about your order, I would like to suitable [(su:tEb&l] 
, passend
Server: I don’t think so, sir, but I’ll check. offer you a dessert, on the house.

62  Business Spotlight 4/2020 LANGUAGE

KEY WORDS Listen and learn!
You can download an MP3 file of this
Key Words list from our website:

Vocabulary trainer

A PDF of these key words as well as a
Use our Key Words list to learn vocabulary from this complete vocabulary list (English–
issue of Business Spotlight. The definitions will help you German) for each magazine is availa-
ble at
understand the words — and build your vocabulary.


air rage aggressive behaviour on board an aircraft aggressives Verhalten im Flugzeug
cameo appearance a brief appearance of a famous person in a film or TV programme Gastauftritt
condemnation strong disapproval Verurteilung
exhaustion the state of being extremely tired Erschöpfung
mediocrity the state of being average, not of very good quality Mittelmaß, Mittelmäßigkeit
pique a feeling of anger and bitterness Groll
prominence the state of being important Bedeutung, Wichtigkeit
retaliation an action taken as revenge for something Vergeltung(smaßnahme)


escalate sth. to pass something to a higher level etw. (an eine höhere Stelle) weiterleiten
overhear sth. to hear something by accident that was not meant to be heard zufällig etw. hören
shun sth. to avoid something etw. vermeiden
snoop on sb. ifml. to find out personal things about someone that they do not want to reveal jmdn. ausspionieren
thrive at sth. to be very successful at something in etw. erfolgreich sein
thwart sb. to prevent someone from doing something jmdn. ausbremsen
toss sth. to throw something casually etw. werfen, (weg)schmeißen


bearable capable of being accepted or endured erträglich
catchy easily remembered, especially of music or advertisements eingängig
daunting frightening, intimidating beängstigend
overly too much übermäßig
pushy insistent aufdringlich, penetrant
smugly in a self-satisfied and self-complacent manner süffisant, selbstgefällig
yummy ifml. delicious lecker


be conditional on sth. to depend on something von etw. abhängig sein
be second nature to sb. (of a habit or skill) to be so familiar to someone that it is automatic jmdm. zur zweiten Natur geworden sein,
or instinctive in Fleisch und Blut übergegangen sein
blow the whistle on sb./sth. to make (someone’s) wrongdoing public über jmdn./etw. auspacken
cut sb. some slack ifml. not to judge someone as severely as you usually would mit jmdm. nachsichtig sein
make a killing ifml. to make a lot of money easily einen Reibach machen
take pride in sth. to be proud of something auf etw. stolz sein
the jury is still out it’s too early to say what the general opinion is das letzte Wort ist noch nicht gesprochen

LANGUAGE 4/2020 Business Spotlight 63 

Fitness: fulfilling
your goals or
your company’s?


Should companies track

employee health?
Um die Gesundheit ihrer Belegschaft zu schützen, greifen Firmen zu Kontrollmechanismen. Darin
Foto: Gang Zhou/

sehen einige eine gefährlich erstarkende Überwachungsgesellschaft, für andere dient es dem Wohl eines
jeden Einzelnen. JULIAN EARWAKER gibt die Argumente beider Seiten wieder.

64  Business Spotlight 4/2020 DEBATE

“Health and well-being are key indicators “There’s great potential for workforce
of productivity in the workplace” data to be misused”
Kevin Thomson Matt Creagh

Employee health and well- We are seeing increasing use

being are the most important of health-related data tracking,
assets of any business and and rules should be put in place
KEVIN THOMSON key indicators of productivity MATT CREAGH to protect workers. There’s great
is corporate healthcare di- is an employment rights
in the workplace. In the past potential for workforce data to
rector at Nuffield Health, policy officer with the
a UK healthcare charity ten years, organizations have Trades Union Congress be misused. In the workplace,
( moved away from tick-box (TUC)( people often feel pressured to
surveillance of employees to a consent to sharing their data
well-being approach. About 60 per cent of organizations in the because they fear there might be repercussions if they do not.
UK now have a health and well-being strategy for their employ- Employers can create profiles of their workers by collect-
ees. Health tracking can give an overview of employee health. It ing a wide range of data. A profile can be used to predict how a
can identify key risks so that interventions can be put in place. worker is going to perform in the future. This could lead to situ-
In the UK, 1.4 million workers suffer from work-related ations where negative inferences are drawn from profiles. In a
health problems. From 2017 to 2018, there were 541,000 workers worst-case scenario, this could lead to employers discriminating
suffering from a new case of work-related illness, and 26.8 mil- against workers because of their health.
lion working days were lost because of work-related ill health. Workforce data can be used to make decisions about disci-
Employers have a responsibility to support and empower staff plinary action, hiring and firing, promotions and pay rises. This
to live healthier and longer lives, particularly as the working pop- is why workers should have a voice in data-driven decision-
ulation ages and diversifies. making processes.
Technology has transformed corporate well-being pro- The strongest protection workers have is GDPR, which gives
grammes. Personalized health assessments are helped by arti- them legal rights to ask their employer which of their data is be-
ficial intelligence to produce an accurate picture of individual ing held, to control the amount and type of data shared, or to
employees. Employees get secure information about their life- demand their data be deleted. People need to know what those
style, nutrition and mental health; employers get an anonymous rights are and that they will be properly enforced.
summary of that data to help them shape workforce health in- Technology should be used for the benefit of workers, for
terventions. Using digital tools, organizations can identify risks example to make sure they are taking adequate breaks from
and encourage positive changes in behaviour. working at their desks. Health data could be made anonymous
Most people carry a mobile phone, and tracking devices are and viewed as a whole across an organization, rather than be
readily available if they want to manage their own health. We connected to individuals. This would enable an employer to
need to be careful that monitoring people’s health doesn’t be- bring well-being benefits to the organization as a whole rath-
come a surveillance tool to track employees. Staff should be er than focus on an individual’s health data. In the US, data-
made aware in advance what their data is going to be used for. protection laws are considerably more relaxed, and in the UK,
We need to encourage employees using trust, respect and em- there is evidence that GDPR is not being followed.
powerment. The large tech companies that have supported this Working people have a right to a private life, and the law pro-
culture are the ones doing best in the marketplace. tects that right. So, an employer’s data collection both inside and
Businesses struggle to find platforms that gather health data outside the working environment must not infringe anyone’s
in one place. It’s a logistical challenge, and the platform must privacy rights. We are talking about health-related data, which is
meet GDPR requirements. Privacy is a sensitive subject, and obviously very sensitive. We have seen a growing use by compa-
staff may be careful about giving out personal information. nies and their employees of technological devices such as Fitbits
Employers want to support individuals, but they also want to and sleep-tracking software. If employees are using these de­
see the economic returns that may be associated with some of vices in their spare time, they might not be aware that the data
these corporate healthcare programmes. is still being collected and used within a work context.

assessment empower sb. inference [(Inf&rEns]  privacy [(prIvEsi]  summary Trades Union Congress
[E(sesmEnt]  [Im(paUE]  , Rückschluss , Privatsphäre; [(sVmEri]  (TUC)
, Beurteilung, ,  jmdn. befähigen hier: Datenschutz , Zusammenfassung [)treIdz )ju:niEn
infringe sth.
Einschätzung (kQNgrEs] 
enforce sth. [In(fO:s]  [In(frIndZ]  repercussion tick-box surveillance
,  Dachverband der briti-
asset [(Äset]  ,  etw. durchsetzen ,  etw. verletzen [)ri:pE(kVS&n]  [)tIk bQks sE(veIlEns] 
schen Gewerkschaften
, Wirtschaftsgut ,  Auswirkung, Folge ,  Überwachung durch
GDPR (general data nutrition [nju(trIS&n] 
Ankreuzen von Kästchen workforce
corporate [(kO:pErEt]  protection regulation) , Ernährung return [ri(t§:n] 
, Unternehmens- [)dZi: di: pi: (A:]  , Ertrag tracking
Fotos: privat

predict sth. [pri(dIkt]  , Belegschaft

,  DSGVO (Datenschutz- [(trÄkIN] 
delete sth. [di(li:t]  ,  etw. prognostizieren sensitive [(sensEtIv] 
Grundverordnung) ,  hier: Überwachung
,  etw. löschen , heikel

DEBATE 4/2020 Business Spotlight 65 


Defending your
data: privacy apps
Protecting yourself
Wer sich im Internet bewegt, muss damit rechnen, dass seine persönlichen
Daten in fremde Hände geraten. Zum Glück gibt es Apps, mit denen Sie Ihre
Privatsphäre schützen. Doch auch diesen müssen Sie vertrauen.
ALEX HERN berichtet.

he world isn’t a binary choice Each of them treats users differently, has a abuse sth. [E(bju:z] 
between living in a surveil- separate place to change privacy settings ,  etw. missbrauchen
lance state and opting out and could theoretically expose some in- by default
of all technological develop- formation you would rather keep private. [)baI di(fO:lt] 
, standardmäßig,
ments. You can use the tech- What your settings are at any given als Voreinstellung
nology and opt out of sharing moment probably depends on when
your private information at you opened your account, when you last [(kQnsieEZ] 
the same time — you just logged in and how good you are at read- ,  Portier(in), Concierge
have to know how. ing pop-ups that flash in front of you consent decree
A new kind of service is try- when you just want to find out the ad- [kEn(sent di)kri:] 
, Konsensvereinbarung
ing to help ordinary users take dress of the party you’re going to.
control of their digital lives. Companies Facebook has even actively changed delete sth. [di(li:t] 
,  etw. löschen
such as Disconnect and Jumbo act like a privacy settings in the past, a practice
expose sth. [Ik(spEUz] 
digital concierge for their for which it was given a ,  etw. offenlegen
users, changing privacy set- “consent decree” by the
fine [faIn] 
tings, deleting sensitive data “It’s an unfair US Federal Trade Com- , Geldstrafe
and making surveillance dif-
ficult. However, to use the
game between mission in 2011 (which
it then broke during
opt out of sth.

privacy apps to their fullest users at one end the Cambridge Analyt-
[)Qpt (aUt Qv] 
,  aus etw. aussteigen;

means giving them a level of and companies ica scandal, leading to a

hier: sich ausdrücklich
gegen etw. entscheiden
control over your digital life
that would be very easy to
at the other” $5 billion (€4.5 billion)
fine). But even if a com-
preferences screen
[(pref&rEnsIz skri:n] 
abuse — and it’s hard to be pany hasn’t changed your ,  hier: Bildschirm mit
certain that any company can be trusted privacy settings, it can still be hard to find Einstellungen

with such sensitive information. out exactly how much information you privacy setting
[(prIvEsi )setIN] 
are making public. , Datenschutzeinstellung
Changing settings For instance, whether or not Google
Illustration: Ledi Nuge/

sensitive [(sensEtIv] 
The main reason for the rise of privacy is tracking your physical location 24/7 , sensibel
apps is the increase in “settings” and on an Android phone depends on when
spin-off [(spIn Qf] 
“preferences” screens in our lives and the you first used Google Maps and whether , Ausgliederung
powerful options within them. Web plat- you have changed any settings since. The surveillance state
forms are complex, with large networks of company used to turn “location history” [sE(veIlEns steIt]  
linked services, spin-offs and acquisitions. on by default. Now, it does not. , Überwachungsstaat

TECHNOLOGY 4/2020 Business Spotlight 67 

Acting as an advocate visit a dubious site that disregards the law. Disconnect’s Oppenheim says: “We
Jumbo is an app for iOS and Android For those sites, you need a rather pushier don’t want, and don’t ask, users to trust us
launched in 2019. Its goal is to cut through sort of advocate: something like Discon- with any sensitive information. In fact, we
some of this confusion. The offer is sim- nect. collect as little data as possible; we don’t
ple: by downloading the app and checking The company offers a service that uses even require email or any personal infor-
a few boxes, the app automatically locks ad blockers, firewalls and virtual private mation, and our technology is architected
down your privacy settings on platforms networks (VPNs) to sit between you and to not collect any user data. As per our pri-
that include Facebook, Google, Twitter the snoopers, letting through only the in- vacy policy: ‘We don’t collect any of your
and Amazon. Instead of you having to formation you intend to make public. personal info, including your IP address,
find every individual preferences screen “Without protection like ours, thou- other than information you voluntarily
and decide which settings sands of trackers collect provide.’”
are harmless — and which information about our Jumbo goes a step further: the app is
are worded to sound harm- online activity when we carefully constructed so that the most
less — the app does it for “People can stop simply use our phones sensitive information never leaves the
Pierre Valade, the com-
using their phone, or computers,” says
Casey Oppenheim, the
user’s device. It would be a lot easier for
Jumbo to work as a web service, connect-
pany’s Brooklyn-based move to India, company’s co-founder. ing to various sites from a centralized
founder, describes its role as take hash and live “Most of these trackers server. Instead, it operates more like a
an advocate for users every-
where. “It’s an unfair game
in the mountains” are companies we’ve
never interacted with
heavily automated web browser by log-
ging on to Twitter, Facebook and the rest
between users at one end directly, yet they collect for you.
and companies at the other. detailed profiles includ- The process is, admittedly, arduous: the
Companies write privacy policies with ing our location data, browsing history first run-through can take a long time to
lawyers, and they make it harder for you and more.”
to figure out how to opt out, how to delete For trackers across the net, that means
your data, but as a user, you’re supposed the app keeps a blacklist, preventing the
to figure out all of that yourself. That’s the worst offenders from loading up to pro-
advocate [(ÄdvEkEt]  load up to sth.
idea here: it’s about representing people tected devices at all. Then, in situations ,  Beistand, Sachwalter(in) [)lEUd (Vp tu] 
and working for them, to simplify a com- where the snoopers might be sitting be- ,  hier: sich ein-,
plex system.” tween the device and the internet — think dazwischenschalten
The service Jumbo offers is possible an airport Wi-Fi — the app offers a simple ,  [wg. Aussprache] offender [E(fendE] 
, Zuwiderhandelnde(r)
because the largest technology compa- VPN service that turns on automatically architect sth.
nies can be shamed into giving users the when needed, preventing anyone else on [(A:kItekt]  pushy [(pUSi] 
,  etw. konfigurieren ,  aufdringlich, penetrant
ability to opt out of the worst violations the connection from seeing what’s being
of their privacy. Google doesn’t want you shared. arduous [(A:djuEs]  shame sb. into doing sth.
,  mühsam, beschwerlich [)SeIm )IntE (du:IN] 
to turn off all of its ad personalization, but, ,  hier: jmdn. durch
as per [(Äz p§:] 
the company rationalizes, most people Collecting your private information Beschämung dazu treiben,
,  laut, gemäß
probably won’t even know about the set- Anyone, that is, other than Disconnect. etw. zu tun
blacklist [(blÄklIst] 
ting, and it satisfies the privacy warriors Because the difficult problem with the snooper [(snu:pE] ifml. 
, Sperrliste
, Schnüffler(in)
to have the option to remove themselves new wave of privacy apps is that, to use
browsing history
from the tracking apparatus, even if most them, you have to trust them with your snoop on sb.
[(braUzIN )hIstri] 
[(snu:p Qn] ifml. 
of the world leaves the options exactly as most sensitive information. Services such , Browser-Chronik
,  jmdn. ausspionieren
they are. as Jumbo make an even bigger demand check a box
that is [)DÄt (Iz] 
But for the rest of the internet, shame than most internet services: for that app [)tSek E (bQks] 
, also
,  ein Kontrollfeld
doesn’t work. Most of the companies that to work, it must request and store your us- aktivieren violation [)vaIE(leIS&n] 
track you across the internet aren’t polite ernames and passwords for every service , Verletzung
device [di(vaIs] 
enough to give you the ability to opt out, you want it to work with. These are prob- , Gerät voluntarily
nor are they open enough for you to know ably the most sensitive passwords you diligent [(dIlIdZEnt] 
,  freiwillig, aus freien
they’re snooping on you in the first place. have, considering the importance of ac- ,  sorgsam, gewissenhaft
You might remember to go into the cook- counts on Facebook, Google and Amazon. in the first place
warrior [(wQriE] 
ie settings for some websites, if you’re Both apps make it clear that they have no [)In DE (f§:st pleIs] 
, Kämpfer(in),
, überhaupt
diligent, but eventually, you’ll forget — or intention of using that information. Verfechter(in)

68  Business Spotlight 4/2020 TECHNOLOGY

Dilemma: who can
you trust with your
private data?

complete and leave your phone rather is that we’re not seen as a free product, access [(Äkses]  postie
hot. But founder Pierre Valade hopes it because everyone knows there is no such ,  hier: Zugriff [(pEUsti] UK ifml. 
,  Briefträger(in)
helps people trust his app with their sen- thing as a free product,” he says. back sth. up
sitive information. “We’re trying to do a Jumbo planned to introduce a sub- [)bÄk (Vp]  sign up for sth.
,  etw. absichern [)saIn (Vp fO:] 
better job in the long run,” he says, “but I scription service in March 2020, which ,  sich für etw. anmelden;
think that we do have a good foundation. adds extra features for people who want hier auch: sich auf etw.
If you go to a doctor, you have to give to increase their privacy and security. Dis- einlassen
, Blutbild
them your X-rays, your bloodwork. If you connect already has a similar option, Dis- bulletproof
go to a lawyer, you have to give them the connect Premium, which offers perma- [(bUlItpru:f] 
, Abonnement; hier: für
information about your case. You must nent VPN use across up to three devices , schussfest; hier: sicher
trust them to work for you. But we’ve de- for $50 (€45) a year. The paid-for features, by design
tier [(tIE] 
[)baI di(zaIn] 
signed a technology that only works on the companies hope, will convince their , Ebene; hier: Segment
, absichtlich;
the phone; we don’t have access to it. By users that they aren’t secretly selling data hier: aufgrund der X-ray
design, it’s very safe. It’s not completely on the side to fund their development. Konfiguration [(eks reI] 
, Röntgenbild
bulletproof, but it makes it much, much But the free tiers remain available, and, hash [hÄS] ifml. 
harder.” trust aside, it’s hard to see why they aren’t , Haschisch

more popular. For some, there may be a

Fighting for your trust feeling that there’s no real option to keep
Ultimately, it’s about trust. That’s not unu- big tech out of our lives, and privacy apps
sual; after all, nearly every action you take will only ever be a partial solution.
in life is backed up by trust rather than Valade hopes otherwise: “It’s a bit like
technical guarantees. (There’s no tech- saying you shouldn’t lock the door be-
nology, for instance, that stops the postie cause someone can smash a door. Yes, I
opening your letters and talking about think people can stop using their phone,
them with their friends.) But the nature move to India, take hash and live in the
of their access means that the companies mountains. But the reality is that we can
Illustration: Nadine_C/

that provide privacy apps need to fight get more privacy now, within the world
harder than most to prove they’re trust- that we actually live in. So, our goal is to
worthy. make privacy so convenient that you can
For Valade, he tries to move the focus actually get it. Our point is actually more
is the UK technology editor for The
away from the fact that Jumbo is free. about control. Are you OK with what you Guardian.
“Something that’s been important for us sign up for? © Guardian News & Media 2020

TECHNOLOGY 4/2020 Business Spotlight 69 

Just perfect:
things don’t
always need
to be so

Lassen Sie keine Fehler oder Schwächen
zu und muss für Sie alles perfekt sein?
Dann sind Sie vielleicht ein Perfektionist.
LOIS HOYAL erklärt, was man unter
Perfektionismus versteht und dass es
Perfektionisten oft leichter hätten, wenn
sie nur weniger perfekt sein wollten.
ADVANCED Take the actress Michelle Pfeiffer. “I’m a
perfectionist, so I can drive myself mad
drive oneself mad
[)draIv wVn)self (mÄd]
UK  ,  sich verrückt
— and other people, too,” she said. “At the machen; hier: sich an seine
same time, I think that’s one of the rea- Grenzen bringen
sons I’m successful. Because I really care faux fault [)fEU (fO:lt] 

about what I do.” The perfectionist direc- ,  hier etwa:
vorgegaukelte Schwäche
tor James Cameron, on the other hand,
prefers to be labelled a “greatist”, saying: mediocrity
o you permanently set the bar “I only want to do it until it’s great.” ,  Mittelmaß, Mittel-
high? Are you never satisfied Perfectionism can have a darker side, mäßigkeit
with mediocrity? Is only the however. Claude Monet once declared pique [pi:k]  
best good enough for you? If that “My life has been nothing but a , Groll

your answers to these ques- failure,” and often destroyed paintings rage: in ~ at sth. [reIdZ] 
tions are yes, then you might in rage at what he saw as imperfections. ,  aus Wut über etw.

well be a perfectionist. The Retired actress Bridget Fonda once said: set the bar high
[)set DE bA: (haI] 
problem is, that’s not quite as “I’m afraid of making a mistake. I’m pretty
,  die Meßlatte hoch legen
perfect as you might think. neurotic about it.” And Steve Jobs insist-
sing the praises of sth.
Perfectionism is a favourite ed on controlling every detail of product [)sIN DE (preIzIz Qv] 
faux fault in job interviews when you development at Apple and used to fire ,  ein Hohelied auf etw.
have to identify a professional weakness. employees in pique if they didn’t reach singen
“I’m a perfectionist,” you smugly say. his sky-high standards. smugly [(smVgli] 
,  süffisant, selbstgefällig
Many people sing the praises of per-
Fotos: Georg Lechner

fectionism. After all, perfectionists are Childhood influences top of their game:
push sb. to the ~
generally seen as uncompromising indi- But what exactly is perfectionism, and [)tQp Ev DeE (geIm] ifml. 
viduals, whose drive pushes them to the why do some of us become perfection- ,  jmdn. ganz nach oben
top of their game. ists? According to Dr Allan E. Mallinger, a bringen

CAREERS & MANAGEMENT 4/2020 Business Spotlight 71 

Healthy perfectionism
US psychiatrist and co-author with Jean- can provide the driving
nette De Wyze of Too Perfect: When Being
in Control Gets out of Control, perfectionism
energy that leads to anvil [(ÄnvIl] 
, Amboss

is the need to be practically flawless, or at

least to appear so to others.
great achievement appreciation
, Wertschätzung
Perfectionism starts early. Mallinger bounce back
says that while “heredity may form the [)baUns (bÄk] 
, zurückprallen;
ore of specific personality types … early ex-
hier: wieder Tritt fassen
periences and perceptions are the hearth, individuals and groups on how to manage perfec-
conditional: be ~ on sth.
hammer, and anvil — the shapers of these tionism. “Our parents and teachers have all these [kEn(dIS&nEl] 
raw possibilities and limitations”. rules, so in order to avoid criticism and to gain ap- ,  von etw. abhängig sein
The behavioural trait stems from vul- preciation, we try to be the perfect child according flawless: be ~ [(flO:lEs] 
nerability in childhood. Strict parental to their rules,” says Demoitié. ,  fehlerlos sein

control can trigger an underlying fear Demoitié says she suffers from perfectionism her- hearth [hA:T] 
of rejection if you fail to satisfy mum or self as a result of negative childhood experiences. “In ,  Feuerstelle, Herd

dad’s high standards. Love and approval my childhood, I was surrounded by narcissists who heredity [hE(redEti] 
, Vererbung
are perceived as being conditional on were always putting me down, criticizing and laugh-
giving a flawless performance. If they’re ing at me,” she explains. “So to avoid all of that, I tried high achiever
[)haI E(tSi:vE] 
imperfect, those children believe, others to be the perfect daughter and child.” ,  leistungsstarke Person
won’t love them. Therefore, they must This hindered Demoitié’s career development in
incentive [In(sentIv] 
never fail. later years. “I couldn’t do as many projects as others. , Anreiz
As children, our biggest fear is of be- As I wanted everything to be perfect, I was over-
juggle a myriad of…
ing excluded, says Annabel Demoitié, whelmed and blocked. I wanted to find a solution [)dZVg&l E (mIriEd Ev] 
founder of the organization Anthusiast! and looked very deep inside myself. Now it’s my ,  mit unzähligen …
jonglieren; hier: unzählige …
in Belgium, which provides coaching to mission to help others.” Indeed, Demoitié shuns the miteinander vereinbaren
word “perfectionist”, preferring instead to talk about
ore [O:] 
people who “have perfectionism”. She says that per- , Erz; hier: Grundstock
fectionism “is a way of behaving, not of being”.

Dealing with perfectionism

A modern disease , überwältigt;
hier: überfordert
“Perfectionism isn’t a behaviour. It’s a way of thinking Perfectionism, sadly, is a disease of modern times.
about yourself,” Andrew Hill, at the School of Sport, York More and more children are suffering from burnout perception
St John University, and Thomas Curran, at the Centre as they struggle to achieve top marks at school and , Empfindung,
for Motivation and Health Behaviour Change, University juggle a myriad of interests. Social media bombards Wahrnehmung
of Bath, say in their paper “Perfectionism Is Increasing
over Time: A Meta-analysis of Birth Cohort Differences impressionable teenagers with daily images of a put sb. down
from 1989 to 2016”. seemingly perfect existence, burdening them with [)pUt (daUn] ifml. 
,  jmdn. schlechtmachen
The following tips for dealing with perfectionism self-doubt. Why doesn’t their life look like that, they
are from the Motivation, Performance and Wellbeing ask themselves? shun sth. [SVn] 
(MPaW) research group based at the School of Sport at ,  etw. vermeiden
And once perfectionism takes root, it’s hard to free
York St John University, led by Professor Andrew Hill: take root
• Don’t base your self-esteem on how you perform. yourself of it in later life, particularly in a work cul-
[)teIk (ru:t] 
Instead, try to be proud of things you have more ture increasingly focused on success, achievement ,  Wurzeln schlagen,
control over, such as being a kind person or how hard and results. In a world in which we all want more for sich etablieren
you work. less, overworked humans are the ones who are pay- trait [treIt] 
• Cut yourself some slack. No one is perfect; mistakes ing the price, says Demoitié. ,  Charakter-, Wesenszug
happen. When they do, focus on the positive.
• Getting things done is better than getting things per- Like other character traits, perfectionism can as- trigger sth. [(trIgE] 
,  etw. auslösen
fect. Try not to put things off and avoid overthinking. sume different forms. The best type is adaptive, or
When it’s done, it’s done. “healthy”, perfectionism. This can provide the driv- underlying
ing energy that leads to great achievement. Healthy , tieferliegend,
birth cohort put sth. off self-esteem
[(b§:T )kEUhO:t]  [)pUt (Qf]  [)self I(sti:m]  perfectionists set themselves high goals and work unterschwellig
, Geburtsjahrgang ,  etw. aufschieben , Selbstwertgefühl hard to achieve them. And if they make mistakes, vulnerability
Fotos: Georg Lechner

cut sb. some slack school [sku:l]  they bounce back easily and take any imperfections [)vVlnErE(bIlEti]  
, Verwundbarkeit
[)kVt sVm (slÄk] ,  hier: Fakultät simply as an incentive to work harder.
ifml. ,  mit jmdm.
nachsichtig sein
There is little to distinguish these kinds of per-
fectionists from self-motivated high achievers, who

72  Business Spotlight 4/2020 CAREERS & MANAGEMENT

very much a
modern disease

CAREERS & MANAGEMENT 4/2020 Business Spotlight 73 

perfectionism has anxiety [ÄN(zaIEti] 
its roots in ,  Beklemmung, Angst

a neurotic fear of
, Verurteilung

enjoy high self-esteem, are conscientious, failure and is the conscientious

goal-oriented and like order and organiza-
tion. Overall, these are happy and easy-going enemy of success , gewissenhaft

daunting [(dO:ntIN] 
individuals. , beängstigend
This type of behaviour rightly pushes you detail-mindedness
to do your best in an increasingly competi- [(di:teI&l )maIndIdnEs] 
tive world, says Mallinger. “I don’t think we ,  Beachtung von Details

can thrive at most careers, or in navigating easy-going [)i:zi (gEUIN]  

,  entspannt, gelassen
today’s highly technical life, unless we’re at
least somewhat perfectionistic.” Feedback becomes very difficult eating disorder
[(i:tIN dIs)O:dE] 
This form of healthy behaviour manifests In the workplace, healthy, adaptive perfectionists , Essstörung
itself only when it is necessary or advan- are likely to be highly motivated individuals who
tageous — for example when a surgeon is enjoy their career success. Unhealthy perfection- [Ig(zÄdZEreItId] 
at work, but not when they are watching a ists, on the other hand, likely suffer from low pro- , übertrieben
movie with friends. In other words, it’s one ductivity and missed deadlines. To these people, lash out at sth.
thing to want to be perfect at your profes- decisions can be pure agony, as their peace of mind [)lÄS (aUt Ät] 
,  nach etw. schlagen; hier:
sion, but it’s a whole other thing to want to depends on never being wrong. Plus, they are major
auf etw. wütend reagieren
be perfect in every single aspect of your life. procrastinators. Fear of failure can paralyse them
The unhealthy, or “maladaptive”, version and make it impossible for them to do their work. [)mÄlE(dÄptIv] 
of perfectionism, on the other hand, has its Even small tasks can seem daunting when failure , fehlangepasst
roots in a neurotic fear of failure and is the is a possibility. Fundamentally, their thought pro- objection [Eb(dZekS&n] 
enemy of success. And perfectionism be- cesses tell them: if they don’t do the tasks, then they , Einwand

comes a problem when it’s an overly devel- can’t fail at them. obsessive-compulsive
oped trait that a person can’t vary or turn This seriously spoils their enjoyment of work. [Eb)sesIv kEm(pVlsIv] 
,  mit einer Zwangsstörung
off depending on the requirements of the “Over-thoroughness and exaggerated detail-
overly [(EUvEli] 
situation, explains Mallinger. If overly per- mindedness not only reduce the perfectionist’s pro-
, übermäßig
vasive and rigid, perfectionism becomes ductivity, but also sour the subjective experience of
paralyse sb. [(pÄrElaIz] 
one of the traits that make up the obsessive- performing tasks,” says Mallinger. ,  jmdn. lähmen
compulsive personality. Giving feedback can be another very difficult is-
pervasive [pE(veIsIv] 
Rather than simply aiming to improve sue when dealing with perfectionists. We all benefit , durchdringend,
themselves, maladaptive perfectionists set from helpful feedback, but overly rigid perfection- allgegenwärtig
themselves unrealistic or even impossible ists have difficulty even with constructive criticism procrastinator
standards. Then, when they understandably and can lash out defensively at what they perceive [prEU(krÄstIneItE] 
,  Person, die Dinge
don’t reach these standards, they listen to to be direct and personal condemnation. aufschiebt
their inner critic whispering in their ear and Ironically, this negative attitude prevents perfec-
rigid [(rIdZId] 
telling them they’re a failure. The result is tionists from achieving — wait for it, yes — perfec- , starr; hier: zwanghaft
anxiety, unhappiness and falling self-esteem. tion. Life is a learning process and we can all learn self-esteem [)self I(sti:m] 
At worst, this type of perfectionism can lead from our mistakes. By running away from failure, , Selbstwertgefühl
to clinical issues, including depression, eat- we stop ourselves from developing as individuals sour sth. [(saUE] 
ing disorders and even suicide. and employees. ,  etw. verderben
Not all perfectionist behaviour is directed in- surgeon [(s§:dZEn] 
ternally, however. “Others-oriented” perfection- , Chirurg(in)

ists direct their demands at others, unrealistically thoroughness [(TVrEnEs] 

expecting them to be perfect. So, the colleagues of , Gründlichkeit

perfectionists can also suffer, says Mallinger. “No thrive at sth. [(TraIv Ät] 
Fotos: Georg Lechner

,  in etw. erfolgreich sein

matter how well they do a piece of work, it rarely is
accepted without qualification. Often, it has to be without qualification
corrected or redone more than once because of triv- )kwQlIfI(keIS&n] 
ial objections.” ,  ohne Vorbehalt

74  Business Spotlight 4/2020 CAREERS & MANAGEMENT

Key issue: how
healthy is your
Fotos: XX

CAREERS & MANAGEMENT 4/2020 Business Spotlight 75 

It’s not a disaster
Dealing with perfectionism if you get something
Annabel Demoitié says that you should
look out for the following characteristics
wrong. Learn to forgive
of perfectionism in your colleagues:
• They have high standards. They can’t
yourself and others
abide mediocrity and always want
to come first. To them, second place
means “first loser”.
• They have a great sense of responsibili-
ty and take a lot on.
abide: not be able to ~ sth.
• They like to be in control and want perfectionist label as long as you have the right atti- [E(baId] 
things done their way — and their way tude and your perfectionism is of the healthy sort. ,  etw. nicht ertragen/
only. And what if you can feel that healthy perfection- aushalten können

• They aim to please people. They want to ism flipping over into the unhealthy kind? First, relax. admission [Ed(mIS&n] 
,  Ein-, Zugeständnis
be liked and accepted and are afraid of Recognition that change is needed is the first step to-
confrontation. This desire for approval wards self-improvement. Second, relax again. Learn appreciate sth.
can lead perfectionists to focus more to accept that real success comes from appreciating a ,  etw. würdigen
on what other people say about their job well done, even if it’s not perfect in every respect.
assertive [E(s§:tIv] 
efforts than on the work itself — and Set priorities, set deadlines, make a plan and then , durchsetzungsfähig
then to forget about their own needs. try to let go of control, advises Annabel Demoitié.
candid [(kÄndId] 
• They don’t know how to be assertive. Most importantly, tell your employees and yourself ,  offen, aufrichtig
They tend either to be overly aggressive that it’s OK to make mistakes. It’s not a disaster if you deed [di:d] 
or to suck it all up. get something wrong. Learn to forgive yourself and , Tat
Once you have identified your col- others. flaunt sth. [flO:nt] 
league, manager or, indeed, yourself as a Finally, try to redefine your own definition of ,  etw. zeigen, zur Schau
perfectionist, the next step is to work out success. Praise yourself for making someone happy
what to do about it. To start with, try to or doing a good deed, for example. “A lot of people flip over into sth.
[)flIp (EUvEr )Intu]  ifml.
learn to take the good with the bad. Work- attach their self-worth to what they do and not to ,  in etw. umschlagen
ing for a perfectionist boss who is hyper- who they are as a person. We have to reach a state of
outweigh sth.
critical and no good at delegating can be self-acceptance and self-love,” says Demoitié. [)aUt(weI] 
both difficult and demoralizing. On the So, if you didn’t put in a perfect performance at ,  etw. übersteigen

other hand, their high standards can push work today, but you’ve done your best, pat yourself pat oneself on the back
you and your team to achieve your very on the back. In itself, such an admission is part of [)pÄt wVn)self Qn DE
best. being perfect — perfectly candid and balanced. And ,  sich auf die Schulter
To prevent perfectionists from procras- tomorrow, if you shoot for the moon but land among klopfen
tinating, offer them projects that they can the stars, sit back, take it easy and enjoy the view. shoot for the moon
easily complete. And ensure that they’re [)Su:t fO: DE (mu:n]  US
,  nach den Sternen
in the right role — for example, not in
greifen; hier etwa: sich
managerial roles, where they might de- etw. Großes vornehmen
mand too much of others. Unless, that sit back [)sIt (bÄk] 
is, their positive qualities are likely to ,  sich zurücklehnen
outweigh the costs. Also, give feedback spell sth. out
cautiously and in small measures when ➻ [)spel (aUt] 
,  etw. verdeutlichen;
dealing with perfectionists. Tip: Why not FOR MORE LOIS HOYAL
is a former cor- hier: bedeuten
ask the individual’s advice on how best to INFORMATION
respondent for suck it all up
give them feedback? BOOK
Bloomberg News [)sVk It O:l (Vp] US ifml. 
Too Perfect: When
Being in Control Gets and has written ,  hier: etw. durchstehen
Perfect your imperfection Out of Control, for many magazines
take a lot on
Allan E. Mallinger, and newspapers,
And what if, while reading this article, you Jeannette De Wyze including The
[)teIk E )lQt (Qn] 
,  sich viel aufladen
recognize more and more perfectionis- (Ballantine Books) Guardian and The
tic traits in yourself? Well, there is no WEBSITE
Times. She has
also published two
need to panic. Remember that the right Anthusiast!
Foto: privat

Annabel Demoitié, books. Contact:

level of perfectionism can spell out cer- perfectionism coaching: loishoyal@gmail.
tain success. You can proudly flaunt the com

76  Business Spotlight 4/2020 CAREERS & MANAGEMENT


“The language of work is

the language of aggression,
domination and control”
Auch für den Geschäftsalltag gilt: ohne Sprache keine Kommunikation.
Doch wie sieht diese Sprache aus? Glaubt man Sigmund Freud und
seiner Theorie, ist die Sprache im Beruf von Aggression und dem
Verlangen, andere zu beherrschen, geprägt.

isten to how we talk about work. We ADRIAN FURNHAM should be enjoyed but that it should be acted upon. We manage
“tackle” problems, “wrestle with” is a professor in the current state of affairs by controlling, changing and directing
technology, market “aggressively”, the Department of it. We think ahead, define the situation and make strategic plans.
Leadership and
make a “killing”, “capture” a market Organisational
We “master” our brief, “master” our skills and attend “master”
segment and hire staff that have Psychology at the classes.
“punch”. Norwegian Business Our fundamental aims at work, agree sociobiologists, are sur-
School, and author
The language of work is the lan- vival and enrichment. When thwarted, frustrated and rendered
of 92 books.
guage of aggression, domination and ineffective, we express aggression, hostility and destructive rage.
control. Freudians see a basic aggressive It is therefore no surprise that we talk so much about stress at
urge behind all our work. They note that work. If work is a constant battle, it can easily lead to frustration
we try to control our environment so that and exhaustion. Indeed, anger, born of our frustrations or fears,
we can overcome our fundamental inse- is ever present in our lives: in addition to “work rage”, there is “air
curity about survival. rage”, “supermarket rage” and “road rage”.
This is the fundamental reason why we The point Freudians make is that, while rage is largely uncon-
work. Our drive to work is a way of com- scious, it surfaces in our work idioms, adages and aphorisms.
pensating for our helplessness as infants. Past generations were probably more aware of work rage and
And this aggressive drive is reflected in understood better than we do the fact that work is often about
our language in the workplace. Work lan- survival. We may have sublimated all the rage into “stress talk”
guage stresses an adversarial relationship and the stress industry that lives off it.
with our physical, social and emotional
environment. When we build things, we adage [(ÄdIdZ]  exhaustion rendered ineffective: be ~
, Sprichwort [Ig(zO:stSEn]  [)rendEd )InE(fektIv]  
call it “work”. When the desired change is , Erschöpfung ,  hier: an der Umsetzung
destructive, we call it “rage”. von Aufgaben gehindert
[)Ädv§:(seEriEl]  hostile [(hQstaI&l] 
All aggressive drives aim to transform werden
, gegnerisch; , feindselig
the present state of something. But, say hier: konfliktreich
infant [(InfEnt] 
[)sINg&l (maIndId] 
the Freudians, who love paradox, aggres- air rage [(eE reIdZ]  ,  Säugling, Kleinkind
, zielstrebig
sion can be both destructive and con- ,  aggressives Verhalten
make a killing
im Flugzeug surface [(s§:fIs] 
structive. Hostile aggression, the more [)meIk E (kIlIN] ifml. 
,  zum Vorschein kommen
anger [(ÄNgE]  ,  einen Reibach machen
primitive form, focuses on negative
Fotos: alxpin, iStockphoto/; privat

+ PLUS , Verärgerung tackle sth. [(tÄk&l] 

change. Creative aggression, which aims master one’s brief
,  etw. in Angriff nehmen;
capture sth. [(kÄptSE]  [)mA:stE wVnz (bri:f] 
to change the present to enhance or create Try our reading ,  etw. erobern ,  zugewiesene Aufgaben
(ein Problem) angehen
future life, is what we mean by “work”. comprehension
meistern thwart sb. [TwO:t] 
exercises on this drive [draIv] 
The more aggressive, determined and article in our ,  jmdn. ausbremsen
,  hier: Antrieb punch: have a ~ [pVntS]
single-minded we are about achieving exercise booklet, ifml. , Schlagkraft urge [§:dZ] , Drang
Business Spotlight enhance sth. [In(hA:ns] 
besitzen; Biss haben
our goals, the more effective we will be Plus. To order, go ,  etw. verbessern wrestle with sth.
to www.aboshop. rage [reIdZ]  [(res&l wID] ,  mit etw.
at work. If our aggression instinct is high, enrichment [In(rItSmEnt] 
,  Wut, Raserei ringen; sich abmühen
the purpose of the present is not that it , Bereicherung

CAREERS & MANAGEMENT 4/2020 Business Spotlight 77 


It takes two
Paare, in denen beide Partner ihre berufliche Laufbahn verfolgen, sind heute zunehmend die Norm.
Doch welche Auswirkungen hat das auf ihre Beziehung und ihr Familienleben? Wie lassen sich Hausarbeit und
Elternpflichten mit der Karriere vereinbaren? JULIAN EARWAKER befasst sich mit diesen Fragen.

“ f either one has doubts, you’re dead,”

says Karen Gordon, managing partner
at L Catterton, a private equity firm
based in the US. She doesn’t mean this
literally, of course. She’s talking about
being part of a “dual-career couple”,

89% 70%
or “DCC”. “It is vital … that both partners of women and... of men in the US are
share the commitment to a dual career part of a dual-career
couple (DCC)
and take pride in that,” she tells global
consultants McKinsey & Company. “It’s

94% 62%
important to align on the notion that of Asian- of Asian-
you’re both happiest when you work and American American men
women but are part of a
prioritize your family.” But is it really pos- only... DCC
sible to prioritize both work and home?

The number of dual-career couples

is on the rise globally. According to Pew of women and... of men earning more than
$150,000 (€135,000) are, 66 per cent of US couples part of a DCC
with children under the age of 18 are
dual-income families. Both partners are

72% 49%
employed in 76 per cent of British cou- of DCC women are of DCC women feel as
ples with two children. Many of these eager for a promotion, if their boss helps them
compared to 56% of with their work-life
couples need two incomes to meet their women whose partner balance
household costs. However, for some cou- does not work

Fotos: alvarez, webking, iofoto, Maartje van Caspel, ANASTASIIA CHERVIAK/

ples, both partners work by choice. Ca-

reer fulfilment is a top priority. In these of DCC men feel they have the same opportunities
dual-career couples, both partners are at work as their colleagues, compared to 82% of
typically well educated, work full-time in men whose partner does not work

professional or managerial jobs and see

themselves on an upward path in their
careers. Source: McKinsey & Company: “Making It Work: How Dual-Career Couples Find
Career Fulfillment” (
“The struggle to balance two demand-
ing careers … is a dilemma that many
employees face every day,” says a special align on sth. eager: be ~ for sth. literally [(lIt&rEli]  notion [(nEUS&n] 
[E(laIn Qn]  [(i:gE]  ,  im wörtlichen Sinn ,  Idee, Vorstellung
report by McKinsey & Company called
,  bei etw. auf einer Linie ,  auf etw. erpicht sein
“Making It Work: How Dual-Career Cou- managing partner pride: take ~ in sth. [praId] 
sein, sich bei etw. einig sein
face sth. [feIs]  [)mÄnIdZIN (pA:tnE]  ,  auf etw. stolz sein
ples Find Career Fulfillment”. commitment ,  etw. gegenüberstehen , geschäftsführende(r)
private equity firm
People in dual-career relationships [kE(mItmEnt]  Gesellschafter(in)
fulfilment [)praIvEt (ekwEti f§:m] 
“often struggle to find such fulfillment,” ,  Verpflichtung; Hingabe
(fulfillment US) meet one’s costs , Beteiligungsgesellschaft
the report says, “because the demands of dead [ded] ifml.  [fUl(fIlmEnt]  [)mi:t wVnz (kQsts] 
vital [(vaIt&l] 
,  hier: erledigt ,  Erfüllung; Verwirklichung ,  seine Kosten bestreiten
work, home and their partner’s career can , unerlässlich

78  Business Spotlight 4/2020 WORK & RELAX

be overwhelming and sometimes even
Jennifer Petriglieri, a professor of or-
ganizational behaviour and author of the
book Couples that Work, says that there is
little guidance available for dual-career
couples. “How can they give family com-
mitments — and each other — their full
attention while both of them are working
in demanding roles? And when one of
them wants to undertake a professional
reinvention, what does that mean for the
other?” she asks in the Harvard Business
The advantages of navigating a success-
ful dual-career partnership are clear, says
Petriglieri: “When both partners dedicate
themselves to work and to home life, they
reap benefits such as increased economic
freedom, a more satisfying relationship
and a lower-than-average chance of di- Seeking
vorce.” Hey, it’s my
She identifies three typical “transition turn now!
points” for dual-career couples:
1. Working as a couple: Creating interde-
pendent lives, and addressing the values
that underpin this change.
2. Reinventing themselves: The need for
“individuation”, typically in a person’s 40s
(the so-called midlife crisis), and how to
support each other in this process.
“It’s worth remembering that
3. Loss and opportunity: How parents work and home aren’t in opposition”
dying, children leaving home and person-
al health problems affect self-identity, and for single-career couples, where one bosses fail to understand modern work-
the ability to recognize and share oppor- half of the couple (usually the woman) ing women.
tunities that arise from these changes. is assumed to stay at home and happily McKinsey & Company’s report iden-
Communication is key. For Karen follow their partner’s career ambitions. tifies a clear need for businesses to rec-
Gordon and her husband, this includes “Today’s professional employees are ognize the increase in the number of
coordinating schedules at regular inter- just as committed to their partner’s ca- dual-career couples as an opportunity.
vals. “We sit down most Sundays and go reer as their own,” she writes, “which “Ultimately, employees are more satis-
through our calendars for the coming means they are more likely to resist for- fied when their employers demonstrate
week,” she told McKinsey & Company. eign stints and the domestic upheaval a clear commitment to supporting dual-
“We figure out who can cover at home.” that goes with them, at least until the career couples and their families,” the
Executive coach Amy Jen Su has fur- time is right for their family unit.” Bar- report says. “A satisfied workforce is an
ther tips to help keep dual-career relation- rett believes that far too many of today’s invaluable asset to any business.”
ships functioning: think of your family as
a team, get used to saying no (especially asset [(Äset]  executive [Ig(zekjUtIv]  overwhelming schedule [(Sedju:l] 
to things that threaten your work-life bal- , Vermögenswert; , Führungskraft; [)EUvE(welmIN]  , Terminplan
hier: Kapital hier: für Führungskräfte , erdrückend
ance) and play to each other’s strengths underpin sth.
and interests. “It’s worth remembering committed: be ~ to sth. family unit play to sth. [)VndE(pIn] 
[kE(mItId]  [)fÄmli (ju:nIt]  [(pleI tu]  ,  etw. untermauern
that work and home aren’t in opposition ,  sich für etw. engagieren , Familienverband ,  etw. (aus)nutzen
undertake sth.
— they’re different aspects of life that
cover [(kVvE]  figure sth. out reap sth. [ri:p]  [)VndE(teIk] 
constantly inform and influence each ,  hier: die Stellung halten [)fIgEr (aUt] ifml.  ,  etw. ernten; hier: mit ,  etw. vornehmen
other,” she writes on ,  etw. herausfinden; etw. belohnt werden
dedicate oneself to sth. upheaval
hier: austüfteln
According to Helen Barrett, editor at [(dedIkeIt wVn)self tu]  reinvention [Vp(hi:v&l], many businesses have failed to ,  sich etw. widmen foreign stint [)ri:In(venS&n]  ,  Umbruch, Umwälzungen
[)fQrEn (stInt]  ,  hier: Neuorientierung
keep up with the zeitgeist. They continue editor [(edItE] 
, berufsbedingter
workforce [(w§:kfO:s] 
, Redakteur(in) , Belegschaft
to design careers “as if it were the 1980s” Auslandsaufenthalt

WORK & RELAX 4/2020 Business Spotlight 79 


Recommended for you

Verbannen Sie die englische Sprache nicht an den
Arbeitsplatz! Mit Büchern, Kunst und anderen
Dingen räumen Sie ihr auch in Ihrer Freizeit einen

Lights on in Connemara:
Irish beauty in bright
blue and green

In the words of the Irish poet Os-
car Wilde, “Connemara is a sav-
age beauty”. Located in Galway, in BOOKS
the West of Ireland, it’s an area of If you’d like to know what triggered Brexit and aftermath
rugged coastal mountains. Savage still have a laugh, read Middle England by Jonathan [(A:ftEmÄT] 
,  Nachwirkungen, Folgen
Beauty is also the name of a spec- Coe. Set during the run-up to the EU referendum
tacular art installation across five in 2016 and the madness of its aftermath, the nov- run-up: during the ~ to...
[(rVn Vp] 
kilometres of Connemara’s steepest el is a tragicomic account of the whole affair. As ,  während der Zeit
landscape, next to Lough Nafooey. the book continues the story of Benjamin Trot- unmittelbar vor ...
Designed by Finnish light artist ter, the main character in Coe’s The Rotters’ Club tragicomic
Kari Kola, it was initially planned as and The Closed Circle, it’s a good idea to read those [)trÄdZi(kQmIk] 
, tragikomisch
a massive public event as part of the books first. Both are enjoyable reads. Middle Eng-
Galway 2020 European Capital of land won the 2019 Costa Novel Award, notably trigger sth. [(trIgE] 
,  etw. auslösen
Culture programme. However, after for its balanced perspective of difficult times.
all events were cancelled because of Published by Penguin.
the Covid-19 pandemic, the futur-
istic show took place without an
audience. It’s now available online.

audience [(O:diEns]  rugged [(rVgId] 

, Publikum , zerklüftet

lough [lQx] Irish  savage [(sÄvIdZ] 

, See , wild

Tragicomic: the
road to Brexit

80  Business Spotlight 4/2020 WORK & RELAX

Falling asleep to the soothing tones of
US actor Matthew McConaughey’s
voice may not be everyone’s dream, design sth.
Welcome but now anyone can. McConaughey [di(zaIn] 
back: the ,  hier: etw. konzipieren
Dixie Chicks reads bedtime stories on Calm, a pop-
return ular app that helps promote restful pep talk
[(pep tO:k] ifml. 
sleep, breathing exercises and guided ,  aufmunternde Worte
meditation. If you’d prefer a pep talk,
MUSIC you can get motivated with basketball [)self I(sti:m] 
The Dixie Chicks, a Texan pop-country band, superstar LeBron James, who gives , Selbstwertgefühl

are back and they are mad. Their new single, ten-minute “Train Your Mind” inspi- soothing
Gaslighter, has earworm melodies and a catchy rational talks that are designed to help [(su:DIN] 
, beruhigend
chorus, but it’s clearly an angry attack on a ma- you manage your emotions and im-
nipulating ex-partner. (“Gaslighting” is when prove your self-esteem. You can try it
someone manipulates you into questioning for free for seven days.
everything that you believe to be true.) Their
new album will be out in May 2020, and Natalie
Maines, the lead singer, has promised that all
the songs will be as personal as this one. Why
the long break? Their career almost ended in
2003, after they criticized George W. Bush, the
US president at the time. Many US radio sta-
tions stopped playing their music overnight.
It’s good they’re back. Can’t sleep?
Keep calm and
download the app
break [breIk]  chorus [(kO:rEs] 
, Pause; hier auch: Auszeit , Refrain

catchy [(kÄtSi]  gaslighter [(gÄslaItE] 

, eingängig , Gasfeuerzeug; hier:
Person, die durch psychische
chick [tSIk]  ifml. 
Manipulation andere an deren
,  Mieze, Braut
Realitätssinn zweifeln lässt

Three in one: a boxed

set of romance

FILMS beautifully packaging classic and cult Trilogy, a boxed set of three of Richard
If you’re passionate about films and masterpieces. Each one comes with Linklater’s films — Before Sunrise (1995),
own a Blu-ray player, take a look at the additional features, which usually in- Before Sunset (2004) and Before Midnight
movies in the Criterion Collection clude behind-the-scenes footage and (2013) — starring Julie Delpy and Ethan
( Since 1984, Crite- exclusive interviews with the stars and Hawke. You can order the Blu-ray discs
rion has been expertly restoring and director. A recent release is The Before that play in Europe via Amazon.

boxed set feature [(fi:tSE]  package sth. release restore sth. starring
Foto: Christopher Lund

[)bQkst (set]  ,  Besonderheit, Merkmal [(pÄkIdZ]  [ri(li:s]  [ri(stO:]  [stA:rIN] 

, Komplettset ,  etw. verpacken; , Veröffentlichung; ,  etw. wiederherstellen; ,  die Hauptrolle spielend;
footage [(fUtIdZ] 
hier: gestalten hier: Ausgabe hier: technisch hochwer- hier: in der/den Haupt-
director [dE(rektE]  , Aufnahmen,
tig aufbereiten rolle(n)
, Regisseur(in) Filmmaterial

WORK & RELAX 4/2020 Business Spotlight 81 


A home-grown solution
As a result of the coronavirus crisis, this issue of Business Spotlight was produced
with all team members working from home. Our weekly editorial meetings were
replaced by videoconferences, at which important production matters were discussed.
Please send your
feedback to:
Ian McMaster
Email: i.mcmaster@
We reserve the right to
edit comments for
clar­ity or length.

Together apart:
members of the
Business Spotlight
team during one
of their regular

Solution: Who am I?
(p. 84)
Engineer, industrial
designer and
Elon Musk

Masking up: better

safe than sorry


Understand the jargon —

­ be careful how you use it

adverse headwinds
Fotos: Kathy Hutchins/; privat

➻ Example ➻ Explanation
“Our business plan outlines A “headwind” is a wind that blows from the front, making forward progress more
how we will deal with adverse difficult. In a business context, a headwind can be anything that slows progress.
headwinds.” All headwinds are adverse, of course, but language usage is full of redundancies.

82  Business Spotlight 4/2020 FEEDBACK

ISSUE 5/2020
Die n n
be vo
Ausga tlight
es s Spo
Busin m Japan
eint a
Japan: facing
0. Our intercultural article
ni 202
new challenges
24. Ju takes us to the “Land of
the Rising Sun”, which
faced serious economic
challenges even before the
coronavirus crisis.

Time to take control!

With our special test, you
can find out how well you
know the language needed
to manage your daily life in
the workplace.

In our next Skill Up! booklet,
we give you the words and
expressions you’ll need for
discussing issues relating
to education.

impressum leserservice
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Chefredakteur Einzelbestellungen (8 Ausgaben p.a.)
(DIE ZEIT, V.i.S.d.P.)
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Art Director Sie 24 Stunden täglich unter: MwSt. und Versandkosten
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PREVIEW 4/2020 Business Spotlight 83 


? Who am I?

From Stanford University

to The Simpsons: who is our
mystery person?

⋅⋅ I was such a daydreamer that my parents

thought I might be deaf.
⋅⋅ I taught myself computer programming
at nine. At 12, I coded my own video game,
Blastar, which I sold for $500.

⋅⋅ I was bullied until I was 15, when I

learned how to defend myself using
entrepreneur”: I have founded and
served as CEO in companies in the

karate, judo and wrestling. automobile, tech, boring and space

I left Stanford University after just industries.

two days of classes. I wanted to name the cars I
I am a citizen of three countries: manufacture models S, E, X and Y.
South Africa, Canada and the US, Due to a trademark issue, I had to

where I currently live. settle for S, 3, X and Y. Bummer.
I have been married three times
(twice to the same woman).
 ho am I?
I have five surviving children (my
has had the first-born son died of SIDS at ten
Turn to page 82 for the answer.
months) — one set of twins and one
largest impact
set of triplets. AI (artificial intelligence) karate [kE(rA:ti] 
My girlfriend, a Canadian musician ,  [wg. Aussprache]

on my life
[)eI (aI] 
,  KI (künstliche Intelligenz)
and visual artist known as Grimes, manufacture sth.

and I are expecting a child. billionaire [)bIljE(neE]  [)mÄnju(fÄktSE] 
, Milliardär(in) ,  etw. herstellen
My mother, Maye, became CoverGirl
boring [bO:rIN]  pledge [pledZ] 
cosmetic’s oldest spokesmodel at the
, Bohrarbeit(en); ,  Versprechen, Zusage

age of 69. hier: Tunnelbau
serial entrepreneur
I have made cameo appearances or bully sb. [(bUli]  [)sIEriEl )QntrEprE(n§:] 
voiced animated characters in several ,  jmdn. mobben , Multiunternehmer(in)
movies and television shows, such Bummer. [bVmE] ifml.  settle for sth. [(set&l fO:] 
as Iron Man 2, The Simpsons and The Big ,  Schade.; Mist. ,  sich mit etw. begnügen

Bang Theory. I always play myself. cameo appearance SIDS (sudden infant death
When asked what daily habit has [(kÄmiEU E)pIErEns]  syndrome) [)es aI di: (es] 
, Gastauftritt ,  plötzlicher Kindstod
had the largest impact on my life,
CEO (chief executive trademark issue

“showering” was my answer.
officer) [)si: i: (EU]  [(treIdmA:k )ISu:] 
My dream is to colonize Mars. , Geschäftsführer(in) , Marken(schutz)streit
I believe AI is the biggest existential deaf [def] , taub triplets [(trIplEts] 

threat to humanity. , Drillinge
Illustration: Georg Lechner

due to [(dju: tu] 

I have signed the “Giving Pledge” ,  aufgrund twins [twInz] , Zwillinge
along with other billionaires, such found sth. [faUnd]  voice sb. [vOIs] 
as Bill Gates, Sir Richard Branson, ,  etw. gründen ,  jmds. Stimme sein

The information about our
mystery person was compiled
Warren Buffett and Mark Zuckerberg. impact [(ImpÄkt]  wrestling [(res&lIN] 
by TENLEY VAN DEN BERG. I think I can safely call myself a “serial , Auswirkung(en) , Ringen

84  Business Spotlight 4/2020 AND FINALLY...

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Excellent work!
Author, editor,
corporate writer

Feedback is essential in the work-

place. If it’s done well, it can make peo-
ple feel that they are valued — and help
them to get better at their jobs. In this issue of
Skill Up!, we provide you with words and phras-
es for giving and receiving feedback. The most effec-
In Word Bank (pp. 4–5), you can learn gen- tive way to learn a
eral vocabulary for talking about feedback. language is not by
The dialogues in the In Context section learning grammar and
vocabulary separately
(pp. 6–11) focus on phrases for giving informal but to learn in chunks
and immediate feedback, structuring formal — groups of words
feedback meetings and discussing feedback that form meaning-
in more detail. The phrases from the extracts ful units. When you
can process chunks,
are listed in Phrase Bank on pages 12–13. In the
rather than individual
grammar section (pp. 20–21), we look at how words, communica-
to form useful questions for performance re- tion becomes faster
Illustration: Bernhard Förth; Foto: privat

views. Try the Test exercises at the end of the and more efficient.
booklet, on pages 22–23, to see how well you Practise chunks from
the Phrase Bank and
know the language presented in this issue.
Collocations pages
Don’t forget to read the Skill Up! boxes for by making a note of
tips on how to make a good impression with those you think will
your clients. You’ll find more such boxes in come in useful when
Business Spotlight magazine. giving and receiving

➳ 63

Sprachtraining leicht gemacht




Contents Knowledge check

What do you know already?
Word Bank
A. Do we talk about “feedback
Key vocabulary 4–5
sessions” or “feedback sit-
In Context tings”?
Everyday, in every way 6–7 
Formal feedback 8–9
B. What is the English expres-
Good and bad days 10–11
sion for Engagement zeigen?
Phrase Bank 
How to say it 12–13
C. Is it correct that a “peer
False Friends review” always includes
Integrity matters 14–15 feedback from your col-

Sharing feedback 16–17
D. What can you say in re-
Essential Idioms sponse to positive feed-
What did they say again? 18–19
Grammar Check 
Feedback questions 20–21 E. 
How would you translate
Test “point taken” into German?
Test yourself! 22–23 

You’ll find the answers on the

following pages and on page 23.

Malgorzata Schweizer LEITUNG PRODUKTION UND Spotlight Verlag GmbH
CHEFREDAKTEUR: REDAKTIONSMANAGEMENT: Kistlerhofstr. 172, 81379 München
Dr. Ian McMaster (V.i.S.d.P.) Thorsten Mansch Telefon: +49 (0)89 8 56 81-0
ART DIRECTOR: Michael Scheufler MARKETINGLEITERIN: Fax: +49 (0)89 8 56 81-105
GESCHÄFTSFÜHRENDE Jessica Sonnenberg Internet:
REDAKTEURIN: Maja Sirola (CvD) ANZEIGENVERMARKTUNG (Chief Sales © 4/2020 Spotlight Verlag, auch für alle
AUTORIN: Deborah Capras Officer): Áki Hardarson (DIE ZEIT, V.i.S.d.P.) genannten Autoren, Fotografen und
REDAKTION: Hildegard Rudolph (frei), LITHO: Mohn Media Mohndruck GmbH, Mitarbeiter.
Michele Tilgner (frei) 33311 Gütersloh Der Spotlight Verlag ist ein Tochter‑​
BILDREDAKTION: Sarah Gough DRUCK: Medienschiff Bruno, Hamburg, ­unternehmen der Zeitverlag Gerd
(Leitung), Judith Rothenbusch Bucerius GmbH & Co. KG


Key vocabulary Key tools and

action plan 
Here, we present the essential , Aktionsplan
vocabulary on the topic of feedback. annual review  
, Jahresgespräch
,  Bewertung, Leistungs-
client feedback 
, Kundenfeedback
customer feedback 
, Kundenfeedback
developmental feedback  
, entwicklungspezifisches
feedback session  
People Key adjectives , Feedbacksitzung

colleague  , Kollege/Kollegin acceptable   peer appraisal  

,  Beurteilung durch Kollegen/
employee , Mitarbeiter(in), , akzeptabel
Angestellte(r) challenging 
, schwierig
performance appraisal  
higher-up  ifml. ,  Mitarbeiter-, Leistungs-
,  Person in einer höheren effective   bewertung
Position (als der eigenen) , wirkungsvoll
performance review  
high potential  exceptional   , Mitarbeitergespräch,
, hochkompetente(r) , außergewöhnlich Leistungsbeurteilung
Mitarbeiter(in) outstanding   professional development 
HR professional  , hervorragend ,  berufliche Entwicklung
,  Fachkraft für Personalwesen receptive (to sth.)  questionnaire  
line manager UK  ,  empfänglich (für etw.) , Fragebogen
,  direkte(r) Vorgesetzte(r) rewarding  self-assessment  
low performer  ,  lohnenswert, dankbar , Selbstbewertung
, leistungsschwache(r) satisfactory   self-development  
Mitarbeiter(in) , zufriedenstellend , Selbstentwicklung
Illustration: Bernhard Förth

peer , Gleichrangige(r) unacceptable   self-evaluation  

subordinate  , inakzeptabel , Selbsteinschätzung
, Untergebene(r) unsatisfactory  staff appraisal 
superior , Vorgesetzte(r) ,  nicht zufriedenstellend , Mitarbeitergespräch
supervisor  vague  user survey 
,  Vorgesetzte(r); Betreuer(in) ,  ungenau, vage , Nutzerbefragung


Key verbs and

phrasal verbs Key expressions
acknowledge sth.   ask a follow-up question  offer advice  
,  etw. anerkennen ,  eine Anschlussfrage stellen ,  einen Rat(schlag) erteilen
appreciate sth.  change (sb.’s) behaviour   receive recognition  
,  etw. schätzen, würdigen ,  sein/jmds. Verhalten ,  Anerkennung erhalten
assess sb.   ändern reward sb.  
,  jmdn. beurteilen, einschätzen create awareness   ,  jmdn. belohnen
check in with sb.   ,  Bewusstsein schaffen set a personal goal , (sich)
,  bei jmdm. kurz nachfragen create rapport (with sb.)   ein persönliches Ziel setzen
clarify sth.  ,  etw. klären ,  eine harmonische Beziehung share a perspective 
(zu jmdm.) schaffen ,  eine Auffassung teilen
compliment sb. (on sth.) 
,  jmdn. (zu etw.) beglück- create trust (with sb.)  show commitment  
wünschen ,  Vertrauen (zu jmdm.) ,  Engagement zeigen
criticize sb.  ,  jmdn. kritisieren show dedication  
deserve praise   ,  Engagement zeigen
engage with sb.   ,  Lob verdienen
,  sich mit jmdm. einlassen track a goal  
develop skills   ,  ein Ziel verfolgen
evaluate sth.   ,  Fähigkeiten entwickeln
,  etw. beurteilen, bewerten value sb.’s contribution 
exceed expectations  ,  jmds. Beitrag schätzen
follow up on sth.   ,  die Erwartungen übertreffen
,  etw. weiterverfolgen
find the root cause (of sth.) 
handle sth.  ,  mit etw. umgehen ,  die eigentliche Ursache
highlight sth.  (von etw.) finden
,  etw. hervorheben
give a glowing
notice sth.  ,  etw. bemerken recommendation  
offend sb.  ,  jmdn. kränken ,  eine glühende Empfehlung
perform  ,  Leistung erbringen TALK TO A
handle criticism   PROFESSIONAL
point sth. out  
,  mit Kritik umgehen
,  auf etw. hinweisen
have a tendency to do sth.   If you are nervous
recognize sth.   about giving or receiv-
,  dazu neigen, etw. zu tun
,  etw. anerkennen
improve performance   ing feedback, it’s a
reflect sth.  good idea to discuss
,  seine Leistung verbessern
,  etw. widerspiegeln your concerns with
make a compliment  
reject sth.  ,  etw. ablehnen someone you trust.
,  ein Kompliment machen
speak up ,  sich äußern Ideally, this would be
make an assumption 
support sb.   ,  eine Vermutung äußern
an HR professional
,  jmdn. unterstützen who knows your work
make an impact  
value sb./sth. , jmdn./etw. and the people you
,  Wirkung zeigen
schätzen, wertschätzen work with.


Everyday, in every way

On the next six pages, we present
extracts with key phrases and The Situation:
expressions you can use to give Merve Collins manages a team of ten
and receive feedback. employees, including Ant and Jo. She
believes in giving them timely and
instant feedback.

1. Great job! 3. An awkward conversation

Jo: Is it convenient now? I’ve Merve: I’ve noticed that you often
printed out the slide deck for you. look at your phone in meetings.
I’d appreciate some feedback. Ant: Yeah, I got a few notifications
Merve: I like the way you’ve in- from a client. I had to text back.
cluded the statistics. They really Merve: The thing is, when you’re
stand out now. You have all the in- on your phone, it can feel like you
formation and it looks appealing. don’t respect the other people in
Great job! the room. We all need to be fully
Jo: Thanks for saying that. focused. The client can wait until
Merve: I think it will make an im- the meeting ends.
pact in the workshop. Can I make Ant: You’re right. I’m sorry. It
a suggestion? Put your name on won’t happen again.
the first slide as well. Merve: I’m going to ask you not to
text in meetings again. Would you
appealing , ansprechend be willing to agree to that?
convenient: be ~  , passend Ant: Of course. I’ll be more careful
slide deck , Präsentationsfolien in future.
Merve: Thanks for having this
2. Are you free? conversation with me. I know it
Merve: Are you free right now? I was awkward.
need to talk to you.
Ant: Absolutely. focused: be ~  ,  konzentriert sein
Merve: I’d like to discuss what notification , Mitteilung
happened in the meeting. text ,  eine SMS verschicken, simsen

Phrase Bank
For a list of all the key phrases used in
the dialogues, see pages 12–13

4. Just a minute!
Merve: Do you have a minute?
Ant: Sure, what’s up?
Merve: I’ve been thinking about
the deadlines. I’d like to give you
some feedback. Actually, I have
some thoughts about how we 6. Write it down
can improve the workflow. Do
you want to hear my ideas? Subject: Great news — client feedback
Ant: Of course.
Dear team
deadline ,  Abgabetermin; Frist; Stichtag
What’s up? ,  Was gibt’s?, Was ist los? You did a fantastic job for the client!
Well done, everyone. And the client
agrees with me. They’ve just signed
up for another three workshops.
5. Many thanks! They singled out our presentation
Merve: I appreciate your will- for praise.
ingness to listen.
Ant: This could save us a lot of Thank you for all your hard work.
time. Many thanks for the in- We couldn’t have done it without
put. you.
Merve: That’s what I’m here for.
All the best
Illustration: Bernhard Förth

I feel confident that it will go

better now.

input , Beitrag sign up for sth. ,  sich für etw. anmelden

single sth. out for praise ,  etw. lobend erwähnen

Formal feedback The Situation:

At regular intervals, usually
once a quarter, Merve holds
Here, we present some more key phrases more formal feedback
sessions with each member
and expressions you might use in formal
of her team. She sends out the
feedback sessions. form for the 360-degree feed-
back first, and then discusses
it with each team member in
7. Review discussion face-to-face meetings.

360-degree feedback
Please consider the following self-assessment questions and review
points before our meeting:

Self-assessment questions
● Where have things gone well?

● What aspects of your work were the most rewarding?

● What were the main reasons for this?

● Where did you experience problems?

● What could or should have been done differently?

● What aspect of your work was the most challenging?

● What was the main cause of this?

● What action could you take right now?

Review points
Please refer to our company guide “The Art of Feedback” for details
on how we use the review criteria below:
1 = unsatisfactory; 2 = acceptable; 3 = satisfactory; 4 = effective; 5 = excellent; 6 = outstanding

REVIEW POINTS 1 2 3 4 5 6
Efficiency (ability to meet deadlines)
Quality of work (ability to perform to high standards)
Initiative (ability to work independently)
Problems (ability to solve problems)
Responsibility (ability to take on responsibility)
Cooperation (ability to work in a team)
Motivation (commitment to working towards our goals)

A year is a long time to wait for a re-
view. A lot can happen over a period
of 12 months. That’s why many com-
panies try to encourage more regular
appraisals throughout the year, pos-
sibly every quarter. When combined
with regular informal feedback, they
help employees understand what is
8. Getting started expected of them and make it easier
Merve: How was your week? for them to improve their overall
Jo: Pretty good, actually. performance.

Merve: As you know, today is your

performance review. First of all, I’d
like to thank you for your contri- 9. Down to business
bution to the team. In general, I Merve: So, tell me, how’s your
am very happy with your perfor- workload? Have things improved
mance. since the last review?
Jo: It’s good to hear that I’m doing Jo: Yes and no.
well. Merve: I’d like to hear your com-
Merve: In particular, I’ve been ments on any issues you may
impressed with how you’ve dealt have.
with the new client more inde- Jo: Well, there’s one client who is
pendently. I see you as a high po- quite difficult. What I’d like to ask
tential. is this: how do you think I could
Jo: Thank you. I appreciate you handle them better? I’d like to
telling me that. know what I can improve on.
Merve: Tell me about the chal-
contribution , Beitrag lenges in more detail.
Illustration: Bernhard Förth

challenge , Schwierigkeit

Phrase Bank issue , Problem

For a list of all the key phrases used in workload ,  Arbeitspensum, -belastung
the dialogues, see pages 12–13


12. Happy to continue? The Situation:

Merve: So, what are your After the review, Merve sends Jo
thoughts? a summary of their discussion —
Jo: I think we’ve looked and asks for Jo’s feedback on her
performance as Jo’s manager, too.
at everything. I’m happy
with the results.
Merve: What I am hear- 13. Send a summary
ing is that you really like
working in the team. Is Dear Jo
that correct?
Jo: Absolutely! Overall, you’ve exceeded expectations.
You consistently show commitment and
dedication to your job, the company and
your clients.
During our review, you were very receptive
to constructive feedback. Despite minor is-
sues with one client, you’ve demonstrated
the ability to adapt well to new situations
Feedback that is specific is
and challenges.
more useful than feedback I will be giving you a glowing recommenda-
that focuses purely on
tion to my line manager. I hope this will se-
the negatives. To be
cure you a place on the training programme
truly effective, feedback
should never be vague or for a managerial position in the near future.
ambiguous. The goal of I’ve attached a more detailed report of the
any feedback should be review for your records.
to help people to perform
better, not just to point out I very much enjoy working with you.
their weaknesses. At our meeting tomorrow, I’d appreciate
some feedback on my work as your line
Warm wishes
Phrase Bank
For a list of all the key phrases
used in the dialogues, see adapt to sth. ,  sich an etw. anpassen
pages 12–13
consistently ,  durchweg, konstant

Good and bad days

Here, we provide some key phrases and
expressions you might need when discussing,
accepting or questioning feedback.

The Situation:
Merve needs to tell Jo about the
areas of work where there needs to
be some improvements. Jo doesn’t
always agree with the feedback, and
she has the confidence to say so.

10. Honest feedback

Merve: I really appreciate the late the night before. We were told
time you spend on each individu- not to do any overtime.
al client. However, one area where Merve: How can we do things dif-
I’d like to see an improvement is ferently?
with your time management. Jo: I can see that there’s room for
Jo: What do you mean? improvement. We could have two
Merve: I’ve noticed that you often people for each client, one who
come in after 10 a.m. When that has overall responsibility, and one
happens, it means that someone who knows the client well enough
else has to answer your phone in to step in when the main contact
addition to their own. person is not in the office.
Jo: I had no idea it was an issue. I’m Merve: That’s an interesting pro-
glad you told me. posal. I need to think about this.
We should look at ways to draw up
Illustration: Bernhard Förth

an action plan.
11. Honest comments
Jo: I understand what you’re say-
ing. However, I thought it was OK draw sth. up ,  etw. erstellen
to come in late when I’d worked step in ,  sich einschalten

How to say it
In this section you’ll find a collection of the phrases and expressions used
in the extracts on the previous pages (pp. 6–11). The numbers (1–13)
after each of the phrases refer to the extract it was taken from.

Starting the conversation Giving positive feedback

I s it convenient now? [1] I like the way… [1]
Are you free right now? [2] Great job! [1]
Do you have a minute? [4] I think it will make an impact. [1]
You did a fantastic job! [6]
Introducing the feedback Well done, everyone. [6]
I need to talk to you. [2] They singled out our presentation
I’d like to discuss what happened in for praise. [6]
the meeting. [2] I am very happy with... [8]
I’d like to give you some feedback. [4] I’ve been impressed with… [8]
I have some thoughts about… [4] You’ve exceeded expectations. [13]
You consistently show… [13]
Giving reasons for the feedback You’ve demonstrated… [13]
I ’ve noticed that… [3, 10]
The thing is… [3] Reacting in a positive way
When that happens,… [10]  hanks for saying that. [1]
It’s good to hear that I’m doing well.
Making a suggestion [8]
 an I make a suggestion? [1]
C Thank you. I appreciate you telling
I’m going to ask you… [3] me that. [8]
Do you want to hear my ideas? [4] I’m glad you told me. [10]

Getting commitment Giving constructive feedback

Would you be willing to...? [3]  ne area where I’d like to see an im-
provement is… [10]
Asking for feedback Despite minor issues with… [13]
I ’d appreciate some feedback. [1, 13]
How do you think I could handle Reacting to constructive feedback
them better? [9]  any thanks for the input. [5]
I’d like to know what I can improve That’s an interesting proposal. [11]
on. [9] I need to think about this. [11]

Showing interest Discussing challenges

 hat’s up? [4]
W Where did you experience prob-
How was your week? [8] lems? [7]
How’s your workload? [9] What could or should have been
Have things improved? [9] done differently? [7]
I’d like to hear your comments on What aspect of your work was the
any issues you may have. [9] most challenging? [7]
What was the main cause of this? [7]
Showing understanding
 ou’re right. I’m sorry. [3]
Y Encouraging self-reflection
I understand what you’re saying. [11] What action could you take right
now? [7]
Showing commitment Tell me about the challenges in more
I t won’t happen again. [3] detail. [9]
I’ll be more careful in future. [3] How can we do things differently?
I can see that there’s room for im- [11]
provement. [11]
Ending positively
Showing appreciation I very much enjoy working with you.
 hanks for having this conversation
T [13]
with me. [3]
I appreciate your willingness to... [5] Being an active listener
Thank you for all your hard work. [6]  hat do you mean? [10]
We couldn’t have done it without What are your thoughts? [12]
you. [6] What I am hearing is… [12]
I’d like to thank you for your con- Is that correct? [12]
tribution to the team. [8]
I really appreciate… [10]
Expressing support
I feel confident that it will go better Use common listening tech-
now.[5] niques, such as paraphrasing and
asking questions, to check, clarify
and confirm meaning throughout
Discussing success
feedback sessions. This ensures
 here have things gone well? [7]
that you listen more carefully for
What aspects of your work were the meaning and are certain that
most rewarding? [7] everyone has the same under-
What were the main reasons for standing of what has been said.
this? [7]

Integrity matters
Skill Up! Audio
There are many words in German and English
You can do an
that sound similar but have very different exercise on
meanings. They are called “false friends”. Business Spotlight



Fotos: ddp; Drazen Zigic, flowgraph,/; metamorworks/

What’s integer in English? What’s Kritik in English?
integer = ( person/man/woman) Kritik = criticism
of integrity ● She didn’t want to hear his

● She’s like New Zealand’s prime criticism.

minister, Jacinda Ardern —
a woman of integrity. It’s not critic!
critic = Kritiker(in); Rezensent(in)
It’s not integer! ● As a theatre critic, it’s my job to

integer [(IntIdZE] = ganze Zahl give my honest opinion of the

● We always have to round shows.
up to the nearest integer.




You mean… You should say… Don’t say… As this
ausgesprochen extremely, very outspoken freimütig,
, Das Gespräch war aus- , The meeting was unverblümt
gesprochen hilfreich. extremely helpful.

toll awesome, excellent, toll Maut

, Dank Ihrer tollen Arbeit, fantastic, great
haben wir es geschafft. , Thanks to your excel-
lent work, we managed it.

How do you say Leistung ●  eistung can also have a financial
in English? meaning. In this case, we trans­
late it as benefit or payment: Ich
● In the context of giving feed­ bekam in den USA keine Leistungen
back— when Leistung usually im Krankheitsfall. , “I received no
refers to how well someone has sickness benefits in the US.”
generally worked — we use per-
formance: Ich bin mit Ihrer Leis- ● When Leistung describes the
tung sehr zufrieden. , “I’m very energy or yield produced by
happy with your performance.” something (for instance an en­
gine or a fac­tory), we talk about
● When Leistung refers to some­ capacity,output, performance
thing specific that has been or power: Diese Maßnahmen
done or achieved, we use accom- könnten die Leistung schnell verdop-
plishment or achievement: Das peln. , “These measures could
war eine hervorragende Leistung. quickly double the output.”
, “That was an excellent accom­
plishment.” ●  y the way, if you have com­
pleted a Leistungskurs, you can
In more informal usage, we call it an advanced course: Ich
can translate it as job: Hut ab — besuchte den Englisch-Leitungskurs.
großartige Leistung! , “Hats off to , “I took the advanced course in
you — great job!” English.”

Adjectives with “feedback”

360-degree feedback  harsh feedback 
, 360-Grad-Feedback ,  scharfes Feedback
anonymous feedback  honest feedback 
,  anonymes Feedback ,  ehrliches Feedback
appropriate feedback   immediate feedback 
, angemessenes , unmittelbares
Feedback Feedback
balanced feedback  instant feedback 
adjective + “feedback” , ausgewogenes ,  sofortiges Feedback
Feedback meaningful feedback 
360-degree constructive feedback  , aussagekräftiges
, konstruktives Feedback
anonymous Feedback regular feedback 
appropriate critical feedback  , regelmäßiges
balanced ,  kritisches Feedback Feedback
constructive data-driven feedback  timely feedback  
, datengestütztes ,  zeitnahes Feedback
Feedback unsolicited feedback 
critical encouraging feedback  , unaufgefordertes
, ermutigendes Feedback
data-driven Feedback upwards feedback 
encouraging favourable feedback  ,  Feedback nach oben
favourable ,  positives Feedback useful feedback 
frank frank feedback  ,  nützliches Feedback
,  offenes Feedback

honest Feedback is in!
immediate Cole: The online survey has now
instant closed. Did anyone pass
meaningful on the feedback for your
regular Alison: Not yet. Is it favourable?
timely Cole:  Mostly. There is some harsh
unsolicited feedback on the call centre,
upwards but it’s generally construc-
useful tive and it’s all very useful.



Sharing feedback
How many word partnerships do you know that sound natural with
“feedback”? Take a closer look at our overview of common collocations
and learn how to use them.

verb + “feedback”

collect receive
elicit reject
interpret seek
obtain share
provide solicit MANAGING
Verbs with “feedback” Traditionally, you get
collect feedback  receive feedback  feedback from your
,  Feedback einholen ,  Feedback erhalten bosses, line managers
or customers, and
elicit feedback  reject feedback 
,  Feedback einholen ,  Feedback zurückweisen
you give feedback
to your subordinates
interpret feedback  seek feedback 
or colleagues. Today,
,  Feedback interpretieren ,  um Feedback ersuchen
many companies also
obtain feedback  share feedback 
encourage upwards
,  Feedback bekommen ,  Feedback teilen
feedback. This is when
provide feedback  solicit feedback  you provide feed-
,  Feedback geben ,  Feedback erbitten
back directly to your
manager or another
verb + preposition + “feedback” higher-up. As with any
feedback, it’s impor-
ask for react to tant to focus on the
facts and to be specific.
pass on respond to
If the feedback is more
negative than positive,
Verbs and prepositions with “feedback”
Illustration: Bernhard Förth

you may want to give

ask for feedback  react to feedback  anonymous feedback
,  um Feedback bitten ,  auf Feedback reagieren
and have someone else
pass on feedback (to sb.)   respond to feedback  pass your feedback on
,  Feedback (an jmdn.) ,  auf Feedback antworten/ to your boss.
weitergeben reagieren

What did they say again?

English is rich in idiomatic expressions. It’s important to under-
stand exactly what they mean. Learn some key idioms here.

First, read the two versions of

the short conversations. Then
cover up the simpler version
and read the idiomatic dialogue
again. Can you remember the
Difficult moment: meanings?
he had words
with John

First, the idiomatic way First, the idiomatic way

Mel: Can I have a quick word? Paul: Wow, word gets around
Paul: Of course. What’s on your fast!
mind? Mel: Here’s the thing… you put
Mel: It’s about the meeting yes- him on the spot. He feels you
terday. I heard you had words should have spoken to him in pri-
with John. vate.
Paul: Point taken. I’ll talk to him.
Now, more simply
Mel: Can I talk to you for a mo- Now, more simply
ment? Paul: Wow, news spreads quickly!
Paul: Of course. What are you Mel: The reason I’m talking to
concerned about? you is this… you put him in a diffi-
Mel: It’s about the meeting yes- cult position. He feels you should
terday. I heard you had an argu- have spoken to him in private.
ment with John. Paul: You’re right. I’ll talk to him.
Fotos: fizkes, sculpies/

quick word: What’s on your mind?   word gets around fast  on the spot: put sb. ~
have a ~ (with sb.)  ,  Was hast du / haben ,  Nachrichten ver- ifml. ,  jmdn. in Ver-
,  (jmdn.) kurz Sie auf dem Herzen? breiten sich schnell legenheit bringen
sprechen words: have ~ with sb.  here’s the thing ifml.  point taken 
,  sich mit jmdm. ,  es geht darum … ,  gut, du hast / Sie
streiten haben recht



Skill Up! Audio

You can do an
exercise on
Business Spotlight

Well done!
You’ve nailed it

First, the idiomatic way First, the idiomatic way

Paul: I gave you some honest Paul: What’s your take on this
feedback with the best inten- now?
tions. John: I feel better. I can take your
John: That may be, but you caught feedback on board.
me completely off guard. Paul: That’s great. But don’t for-
Paul: I’m sorry, John. Perhaps we get the positive feedback on your
need to do some straight talking design. You really nailed it! Keep
now. it up!

Now, more simply Now, more simply

Paul: I gave you some honest Paul: What’s your opinion of this
feedback for a good purpose. now?
John: That may be, but you sur- John: I feel better. I understand
prised me completely. and accept your feedback.
Paul: I’m sorry, John. Perhaps we Paul: That’s great. But don’t for-
need to talk openly and honestly get the positive feedback on your
now. design. You did it perfectly! Keep
doing what you’re doing!

with the best (of) do some straight What’s your take You really nailed it!
intentions  talking  on this?   ifml. 
,  in bester Absicht ,  offen miteinander ,  Was meinst du / ,  etwa: Das hast
off guard: catch sb. ~   reden meinen Sie dazu? du / haben Sie super
,  jmdn. unvorbereitet on board: take sth. ~ gemacht!
erwischen ifml.  Keep it up!  
,  etw. annehmen; sich ,  Weiter so!
etw. zu Herzen nehmen



Feedback questions
Knowledge of the basics of English grammar
will help you to communicate clearly and
confidently. Here, we review how to ask
questions in the context of feedback.

1. Getting a “yes”
When you give someone feedback,
especially if it is spontaneous, it’s
a good idea to ask if they are open
to receive your feedback. You can
do this by asking a closed question,
that is, one that can be answered
with “yes” or “no”. Where the main
verb is “be”, we put the subject af­ D
 o you have a minute?
ter the appropriate form of “be”: Did you cancel your meeting so
Is it convenient to talk now? we can talk now?
Are you free right now?
Once the person answers “yes”
In questions with other auxiliary and confirms that they are listen­
verbs (“have”, “will” or a modal ing, you can continue with your
auxiliary, such as “can”, “could”, feedback.
“would” or “should”), we put the
subject after the auxiliary: 2. “Some” or “any”?
Can I have a word? The basic rule for the use of “some”
Could we talk about your client and “any” is that “some” is used in
now? affirmative clauses, whereas “any”
Illustration: Bernhard Förth

is used in negative clauses and

In other cases, we add a form of questions. However, “some” is
“do”. For the past simple, use “did”. used in questions if they are offers
The main verb appears in the infin­ or requests, especially when we ex­
itive: pect the answer to be “yes”:

 ould I give you some feedback continuous. It can be used in both
on your presentation? open and closed questions:
He didn’t make any suggestions. 
Will you be needing any addi­
tional support?
3. Open questions
Most questions during a feedback 5. Dealing with hypotheticals
session won’t be closed; they will Hypothetical questions are used
be open. These are the types of in feedback sessions to encourage
questions that encourage longer reflection or self-reflection. Such
answers. They start with a ques­ questions use the second condi­
tion word (“who”, “what”, “why”, tional — “would” + infinitive form
“how”). and past simple in the “if”-clause:
If the question word is the ob­ If you had more resources, how
ject of the verb in the question, would you use them?
you will need an auxiliary. Use the
structure question word + auxili­
ary + subject + main verb:
Where did you experience prob­
What action could you take? INDIRECT QUESTIONS
What have you done about To make your questions
these problems? more polite, you can intro-
duce them with another
How can you improve?
question. The direct question
then becomes an indirect
If the question word is the subject question, which has the syn-
of the sentence, you will not need tax of an affirmative clause,
an auxiliary: not of a question.
 What happened? (not “What Remember: There is no
did happen?”) inversion of the subject
and auxiliary in the indirect
4. Polite questions
 ould you tell me how you
To make your questions less direct, will deal with this issue?
you can use the structure “will” +  o you know how you
“be” + the “-ing” form of the verb, could improve the process?
which is known as the future

Test yourself!
See how well you know the words
and phrases presented in this
booklet by doing the exercises
below. Cover the answers at the
bottom of page 23.

1. Choose the correct 2. Rearrange the letters to

options to complete the complete the missing
sentences. nouns. The first letter is in
the correct place.
A. Congratulations on your
presentation. It was A. Can you fill out this
outstanding /unsatisfac-
tory. (qaruenistineo) before the
B. I really enjoy the work. It’s
very receptive/rewarding. B. When is your next staff

C. The work can be very

difficult at times. I find it
challenging/exceptional. C. Self-
(aemessssnt) is an impor-
D. No one is happy with this
tant part of the feedback
report. It’s inacceptable/

E. As a team, you are incredi- D. Most employees at our firm

bly effective/effectually. have only an annual
Illustration: Bernhard Förth

F. On the whole, I believe that (rweevi) with their man­

the most useful feedback is agers. They should take
unsoliciting/unsolicited. place more often.



3. What would you say in the 4. Replace each German

following situations? word (in italics) in the
sentences below with the
A. You want to ask if someone correct English word.
can talk to you now. Use
“minute”. A. I really respect him.
Robert Smith is a(n)

(integre Person).
B. You want to give positive
feedback about a presenta-
B. Her
tion. Use “impact”.
(Kritik) was harsh, but valid.

C. Today, I’d like to start by
C. You’d like someone to come thanking you all for your
in earlier to the office. Use
“willing”. (tolle Arbeit).

D. This detailed feedback is

D. You want to encourage

(ausgesprochen) helpful.
self-reflection. Start with
“What action...?”.


1. A. outstanding; B. rewarding; C. challenging;
E. Show that you are commit- D. unacceptable; E. effective; F. unsolicited
2. A. questionnaire
ted to change. Use “happen”. B. appraisal
C. assessment
D. review
3. A. Do you have a minute?
B. I think it will make an impact.
C. Would you be willing to come in earlier?
Answers from page 3: D. What action could you take right now?
A. feedback sessions E. It won’t happen again.
B. show commitment (Other options are possible.)
C. Yes, that’s correct. (peer review = Beurteilung 4. A. person of integrity
durch Kollegen/Kolleginnen) B. criticism
D. Thank you. I appreciate you saying that. C. awesome/excellent/fantastic/great work
E. Gut, du hast/Sie haben recht. D. extremely

Überall, täglich und rund um die Uhr. Mit Berlitz

Weiterbildungsziele flexibel online erreichen.


das muss ich super, das kann ich

wiederholen schon


addressee  , Empfänger(in)
Use a more formal style in your
archive  , Archiv emails with people you don’t
attachment  , Anhang know or with people who have
body  ,  Hauptteil, Korpus a more senior position than you
bullet point  , Aufzählungspunkt do. Respect the status of the
capital letter (cap.)  ,  Großbuchstabe email recipient.
contact details  , Kontaktdaten

disclaimer  , Haftungsausschluss

draft  , Entwurf

email account  , E-Mail-Account

filter  , Filter WHAT’S IT ABOUT?

greeting  , Begrüßung(sformel) The first thing your reader will see is
heading   , Überschrift
the subject line , so make sure that it is
high priority  ,  hohe Priorität
relevant. Ideally, it should be a clear,
short summary of your email and make
inbox  ,  Posteingang, Inbox
the recipient want to open your email
junk mail  ,  Werbemail, unerwünschte E-Mail
message  , Nachricht

newsletter  , Newsletter

opening  , Anfang(sformel)

outbox  ,  Postausgang, Outbox

paragraph  ,  Absatz FAST TIPS

recipient   , Empfänger(in) ●  ivide long emails into
settings  , Einstellungen short paragraphs .
signature  , Signatur ●  Use bullet points and headings for key
spam folder  , Spamordner points.
● Include a signature with your contact
spellchecker  , Rechtschreibprüfung
spelling mistake  , Rechtschreibfehler
● Use the spellchecker to avoid typos.
subject line  , Betreffzeile
● Be careful how you use capital letters
summary  , Zusammenfassung
template  ,  Vorlage, Muster SHOUTING!
trash  , Papierkorb

typo  , Tippfehler

urgent  , dringend
ampersand  ,  Und-Zeichen (&)
To avoid any misunderstandings,
at sign  ,  Klammeraffe (@)
write the dates in full and include
attach sth.  ,  etw. anhängen the day of the week in your
bulk email  , Massen-E-Mail out-of-office replies . If you write
compose sth.  ,  etw. verfassen 07/06/20, for example, this means
compress a file  ,  eine Datei komprimieren 7 June to a British speaker, but
confidential   , vertraulich 6 July to an American:
copy sb. in  ,  jmdn. auf/in CC setzen
Thank you for your message. I’m cur-
(do a) search  ,  eine Recherche vornehmen
rently out of the office and will be back
document  , Dokument
on Monday, 7 June. I will reply to your
dot  ,  Punkt (in E-Mail-Adresse)
email as soon as possible when I return.
email sb.  ,  jmdm. eine E-Mail schicken

email notification  , E-Mail-Benachrichtigung If your message is urgent, please

file   , Datei contact my assistant, Ray Jones, at
file sth.   ,  etw. ablegen r.jones@...
flag sth.  ,  etw. kennzeichnen

follow sth. up  ,  etw. weiterverfolgen

Best regards
font size  , Schriftgröße

full stop  ,  Punkt (am Satzende)

hyphen  , Bindestrich

incoming mail     ,  Posteingang

inquire about sth.  , Nachforschungen

über etw. anstellen
internal email  ,  interne E-Mail

link   ,  Link; Verknüpfung

notify sb.  ,  jmdn. benachrichtigen

outgoing email     ,  ausgehende E-Mail

out-of-office reply   , Abwesenheitsnotiz

please contact   , bitte wende dich / wenden Sie

sich an
prioritize sth.  ,  etw. Priorität geben Plan your email carefully
redirect emails  ,  E-Mails umleiten before you write it. Write
review sth.   ,  etw. prüfen the recipient’s address
salutation   , Anrede
after you have reviewed
save as draft   ,  als Entwurf speichern

search emails   ,  E-Mails durchsuchen

the email. Press “send”
set up an out-of-office reply  , eine Abwesenheitsnotiz only once you have
checked that you have
sign off  ,  sich abmelden

sort emails  ,  E-Mails sortieren

attached all documents
subscribe to a newsletter  ,  einen Newsletter abonnieren and/or included any links:
timeline   , Zeitrahmen

topic   , Thema ●  Attached please find the

underscore  , Unterstrich PDF you requested.
unopened email    ,  ungeöffnete E-Mail
● I am sending you a link to
unread email   ,  ungelesene E-Mail

unsubscribe from a newsletter  ,  einen Newsletter abbestellen

the article.
access sth.   ,  auf etw. zugreifen
Clearly state what you want the
recipient of your text or email to answer sth.   ,  etw. beantworten

do. Give details and set a deadline check sth.   ,  etw. überprüfen, kontrollieren

where necessary. And proofread deal with sth.     ,  etw. bearbeiten, erledigen

your message: delete sth.   ,  etw. löschen

download sth.     ,  etw. herunterladen

Could you please send me the de-
forward sth.  ,  etw. weiterleiten
tails by 10 a.m. on Friday, 24 July? get sth.   ,  etw. bekommen
I’d be grateful if you could get back
get back to sb.   , sich wieder mit jmdm. in
to me by 5 p.m. tomorrow. Verbindung setzen
look forward to (doing) sth.  ,  sich auf etw. freuen

open sth.   ,  etw. öffnen

FINISH STRONG proofread sth.   ,  etw. Korrektur lessen
Thanks again for your help. I look
read sth.   ,  etw. lesen
forward to hearing from you.
receive sth.  ,  etw. erhalten
● Have a great weekend!
● All the best
reply to sth.   ,  etw. beantworten

respond to sth.  ,  auf etw. antworten, reagieren

save sth.   ,  etw. speichern

HOW TO CLOSE send sth.  ,  etw. senden
Yours sincerely is used to close send sth. again  ,  etw. erneut senden
more formal emails. Best regards
set a deadline  ,  eine Frist setzen
or Kind regards can be used in
both formal and informal mails, STARTING...
while Take care! or All the best are Dear…  ,  Sehr geehrte(r) … / Liebe(r) ...

more informal alternatives. Dear colleagues  ,  Liebe Kolleginnen und Kollegen

Very informal emails often Dear Sir or Madam   ,  Sehr geehrte Damen und Herren
have no closing. Instead, they I’m writing to/about/because…  , Ich schreibe (Dir/Ihnen), um ... /
may end with a personal com- bezüglich ... / wegen ... / weil ...
ment, a person’s initials, emoti- Thanks for getting back to me.   , Danke, dass Du Dich wieder bei
cons or even “xxx” for “kisses”. mir meldest / Sie sich wieder bei
mir melden.
Thanks for the quick reply.  ,  Danke für die schnelle Anwort.

Thank you very much for your email.   ,  Vielen Dank für Deine/Ihre E-Mail.

Have a great weekend!   ,  Schönes Wochenende!

Have a nice day!  , Ich wünsche Dir/Ihnen einen

schönen Tag!
I look forward to hearing from you.   , Ich hoffe, bald von Dir/Ihnen zu
Illustrationen: sam-ding, LEOcrafts, Robert Wicher/

Many thanks!  ,  Vielen Dank!

Thanks in advance!  ,  Vielen Dank im Voraus!

Thanks so much!  ,  Herzlichen Dank!

All the best   ,  Beste/Viele Grüße; Alles Gute

Best regards  ,  Beste/Viele Grüße

Cheers   ,  Tschüss; Gruß

Kind regards   ,  Mit freundlichen Grüßen

Take care!   ,  Mach’s gut!, Tschüss

Warm regards   ,  Liebe Grüße

Yours sincerely   ,  Mit freundlichen Grüßen

archive messages  ,  Nachrichten archivieren Text messages and instant messaging are often
create a new contact  ,  einen neuen Kontakt erstellen used to make quick arrangements. In this case,
create a new group  ,  eine neue Gruppe erstellen people use informal language and may not use
edit messages  ,  Nachrichten bearbeiten any punctuation — or too much punctuation!!!
emoticon /smiley  ,  Emoticon, Smiley

instant messaging  ,  Nachrichtensofortversand Note: Emoticons and emojis are common in

internal, informal communication within teams,
(mobile) device   ,  (mobiles) Gerät
but not generally with suppliers or clients.
ping sb. sth.   , jmdm. etw. (elektronisch)
übermitteln Type out abbreviations in more formal
predictive text   ,  Texterkennung; Autokorrektur
punctuation  , Interpunktion
●  OMG! Need a coffee!!!! Free for a chat?
send a text  ,  eine SMS verschicken
How about 10.30?
share a contact  , einen Kontakt verschicken/
OK! Coffee shop downstairs
share a location  ,  einen Standort teilen

text (message)  , SMS(-Nachricht)

text sb. 
type sth. out 
,  jmdm. eine SMS schicken

,  etw. ausschreiben; eintippen

write a text  ,  eine SMS schreiben Do be careful with predictive text in
COMMON SHORT FORMS instant messaging and texts.
AFAIK (as far as I know)  ,  soweit ich weiß Sometimes, it can change
bcc (blind (carbon) copy)  , Blindkopie, unsichtbare(r)
E-Mail-Empfänger(in) the words in ways
BTW (by the way)   ,  übrigens, im Übrigen you wouldn’t expect
BYOD (bring your own device)  ,  wörtl.: bringe dein eigenes Gerät mit or want!
cc (carbon copy)  , (E-Mail-)Kopie

COPE (corporate-owned, personally   ,  wörtl.: unternehmenseigen,

enabled) persönlich eingerichtet
CU later (see you later)   ,  bis später

CYOD (choose your own device)  ,  wörtl.: wähle dein eigenes Gerät aus

e.g. (for example)  ,  z.B. (zum Beispiel)

EOM (end of message)  ,  Ende der Nachricht

fwd (forward)  , weiterleiten IMPRESSUM

FYI (for your information)  ,  zu deiner/Ihrer Information GESCHÄFTSFÜHRERIN: Malgorzata Schweizer

CHEFREDAKTEUR Dr. Ian McMaster (V.i.S.d.P.)
IDK (I don’t know)  ,  ich weiß es nicht
ART DIRECTOR Michael Scheufler
IMO (in my opinion)   ,  meiner Meinung nach GESCHÄFTSFÜHRENDE REDAKTEURIN
(Chefin vom Dienst) Maja Sirola
LOL (laughing out loud)  ,  haha! (wörtl.: laut lachend) AUTORIN Deborah Capras
REDAKTION Hildegard Rudolph (frei), Michele Tilgner (frei)
OMG (Oh my God)  ,  Oh, Gott!
BILDREDAKTION Sarah Gough, Judith Rothenbusch
PS (postscript)  , Nachtrag GESTALTUNG Georg Lechner
DRUCK Medienschiff Bruno, Hamburg,
re (regarding / with reference to)  , betreffend (betr.), unter Bezug-
© 2020 Spotlight Verlag, auch für alle genannten Autoren, Fotografen und
nahme auf Mitar­beiter. Der Spotlight Verlag ist ein Tochterunternehmen der Zeitverlag
R U FREE (Are you free?)  ,  Bist du / Sind Sie frei? Gerd Bucerius GmbH & Co. KG

R u there? (Are you there?)  ,  Bist du / Sind Sie da?

TBD (to be discussed)   ,  noch zu besprechen

thx (thanks)  ,  danke

TIA (thanks in advance)  ,  danke im Voraus

TTYL (talk to you later)   ,  wir sprechen später darüber

Besuchen Sie uns auf

In formal emails, we generally use the
salutation Dear Mr/Ms and the surna-
me. If you don’t know the name, write
Dear Sir or Madam.
For more informal emails, the salu-
tation is Dear, Hello or Hi and the first
name. If you don’t know the name, wri-
te Hello.

When you tell someone your email
address, say each word separately.
Spell out your name and make sure you
know how to say the different punctua-
tion marks. We say at [æt] for @.

List the contact details of the people
who will be able to deal with urgent
messages in your absence. Include
their names, positions, email addresses
and telephone numbers, including the
country code.

The German word bekommen is transla-
ted as get or receive:
 id you get my email?
● D

Don’t use become, as this means werden:

She became the head of marketing last

Instant messaging or texts are ideal for
short messages. If you’ve got somet-
hing longer to say, consider sending an
email instead. Don’t be too formal in
these kinds of messages. Write as you
would speak, and always give the other
person enough time to respond.
ampersand  ,  Und-Zeichen (&)
To avoid any misunderstandings,
at sign  ,  Klammeraffe (@)
write the dates in full and include
attach sth.  ,  etw. anhängen the day of the week in your
bulk email  , Massen-E-Mail out-of-office replies . If you write
compose sth.  ,  etw. verfassen 07/06/20, for example, this means
compress a file  ,  eine Datei komprimieren 7 June to a British speaker, but
confidential   , vertraulich 6 July to an American:
copy sb. in  ,  jmdn. auf/in CC setzen
Thank you for your message. I’m cur-
(do a) search  ,  eine Recherche vornehmen
rently out of the office and will be back
document  , Dokument
on Monday, 7 June. I will reply to your
dot  ,  Punkt (in E-Mail-Adresse)
email as soon as possible when I return.
email sb.  ,  jmdm. eine E-Mail schicken

email notification  , E-Mail-Benachrichtigung If your message is urgent, please

file   , Datei contact my assistant, Ray Jones, at
file sth.   ,  etw. ablegen r.jones@...
flag sth.  ,  etw. kennzeichnen

follow sth. up  ,  etw. weiterverfolgen

Best regards
font size  , Schriftgröße

full stop  ,  Punkt (am Satzende)

hyphen  , Bindestrich

incoming mail     ,  Posteingang

inquire about sth.  , Nachforschungen

über etw. anstellen
internal email  ,  interne E-Mail

link   ,  Link; Verknüpfung

notify sb.  ,  jmdn. benachrichtigen

outgoing email     ,  ausgehende E-Mail

out-of-office reply   , Abwesenheitsnotiz

please contact   , bitte wende dich / wenden Sie

sich an
prioritize sth.  ,  etw. Priorität geben Plan your email carefully
redirect emails  ,  E-Mails umleiten before you write it. Write
review sth.   ,  etw. prüfen the recipient’s address
salutation   , Anrede
after you have reviewed
save as draft   ,  als Entwurf speichern

search emails   ,  E-Mails durchsuchen

the email. Press “send”
set up an out-of-office reply  , eine Abwesenheitsnotiz only once you have
checked that you have
sign off  ,  sich abmelden

sort emails  ,  E-Mails sortieren

attached all documents
subscribe to a newsletter  ,  einen Newsletter abonnieren and/or included any links:
timeline   , Zeitrahmen

topic   , Thema ●  Attached please find the

underscore  , Unterstrich PDF you requested.
unopened email    ,  ungeöffnete E-Mail
● I am sending you a link to
unread email   ,  ungelesene E-Mail

unsubscribe from a newsletter  ,  einen Newsletter abbestellen

the article.
access sth.   ,  auf etw. zugreifen
Clearly state what you want the
recipient of your text or email to answer sth.   ,  etw. beantworten

do. Give details and set a deadline check sth.   ,  etw. überprüfen, kontrollieren

where necessary. And proofread deal with sth.     ,  etw. bearbeiten, erledigen

your message: delete sth.   ,  etw. löschen

download sth.     ,  etw. herunterladen

Could you please send me the de-
forward sth.  ,  etw. weiterleiten
tails by 10 a.m. on Friday, 24 July? get sth.   ,  etw. bekommen
I’d be grateful if you could get back
get back to sb.   , sich wieder mit jmdm. in
to me by 5 p.m. tomorrow. Verbindung setzen
look forward to (doing) sth.  ,  sich auf etw. freuen

open sth.   ,  etw. öffnen

FINISH STRONG proofread sth.   ,  etw. Korrektur lessen
Thanks again for your help. I look
read sth.   ,  etw. lesen
forward to hearing from you.
receive sth.  ,  etw. erhalten
● Have a great weekend!
● All the best
reply to sth.   ,  etw. beantworten

respond to sth.  ,  auf etw. antworten, reagieren

save sth.   ,  etw. speichern

HOW TO CLOSE send sth.  ,  etw. senden
Yours sincerely is used to close send sth. again  ,  etw. erneut senden
more formal emails. Best regards
set a deadline  ,  eine Frist setzen
or Kind regards can be used in
both formal and informal mails, STARTING...
while Take care! or All the best are Dear…  ,  Sehr geehrte(r) … / Liebe(r) ...

more informal alternatives. Dear colleagues  ,  Liebe Kolleginnen und Kollegen

Very informal emails often Dear Sir or Madam   ,  Sehr geehrte Damen und Herren
have no closing. Instead, they I’m writing to/about/because…  , Ich schreibe (Dir/Ihnen), um ... /
may end with a personal com- bezüglich ... / wegen ... / weil ...
ment, a person’s initials, emoti- Thanks for getting back to me.   , Danke, dass Du Dich wieder bei
cons or even “xxx” for “kisses”. mir meldest / Sie sich wieder bei
mir melden.
Thanks for the quick reply.  ,  Danke für die schnelle Anwort.

Thank you very much for your email.   ,  Vielen Dank für Deine/Ihre E-Mail.

Have a great weekend!   ,  Schönes Wochenende!

Have a nice day!  , Ich wünsche Dir/Ihnen einen

schönen Tag!
I look forward to hearing from you.   , Ich hoffe, bald von Dir/Ihnen zu
Illustrationen: sam-ding, LEOcrafts, Robert Wicher/

Many thanks!  ,  Vielen Dank!

Thanks in advance!  ,  Vielen Dank im Voraus!

Thanks so much!  ,  Herzlichen Dank!

All the best   ,  Beste/Viele Grüße; Alles Gute

Best regards  ,  Beste/Viele Grüße

Cheers   ,  Tschüss; Gruß

Kind regards   ,  Mit freundlichen Grüßen

Take care!   ,  Mach’s gut!, Tschüss

Warm regards   ,  Liebe Grüße

Yours sincerely   ,  Mit freundlichen Grüßen

archive messages  ,  Nachrichten archivieren Text messages and instant messaging are often
create a new contact  ,  einen neuen Kontakt erstellen used to make quick arrangements. In this case,
create a new group  ,  eine neue Gruppe erstellen people use informal language and may not use
edit messages  ,  Nachrichten bearbeiten any punctuation — or too much punctuation!!!
emoticon /smiley  ,  Emoticon, Smiley

instant messaging  ,  Nachrichtensofortversand Note: Emoticons and emojis are common in

internal, informal communication within teams,
(mobile) device   ,  (mobiles) Gerät
but not generally with suppliers or clients.
ping sb. sth.   , jmdm. etw. (elektronisch)
übermitteln Type out abbreviations in more formal
predictive text   ,  Texterkennung; Autokorrektur
punctuation  , Interpunktion
●  OMG! Need a coffee!!!! Free for a chat?
send a text  ,  eine SMS verschicken
How about 10.30?
share a contact  , einen Kontakt verschicken/
OK! Coffee shop downstairs
share a location  ,  einen Standort teilen

text (message)  , SMS(-Nachricht)

text sb. 
type sth. out 
,  jmdm. eine SMS schicken

,  etw. ausschreiben; eintippen

write a text  ,  eine SMS schreiben Do be careful with predictive text in
COMMON SHORT FORMS instant messaging and texts.
AFAIK (as far as I know)  ,  soweit ich weiß Sometimes, it can change
bcc (blind (carbon) copy)  , Blindkopie, unsichtbare(r)
E-Mail-Empfänger(in) the words in ways
BTW (by the way)   ,  übrigens, im Übrigen you wouldn’t expect
BYOD (bring your own device)  ,  wörtl.: bringe dein eigenes Gerät mit or want!
cc (carbon copy)  , (E-Mail-)Kopie

COPE (corporate-owned, personally   ,  wörtl.: unternehmenseigen,

enabled) persönlich eingerichtet
CU later (see you later)   ,  bis später

CYOD (choose your own device)  ,  wörtl.: wähle dein eigenes Gerät aus

e.g. (for example)  ,  z.B. (zum Beispiel)

EOM (end of message)  ,  Ende der Nachricht

fwd (forward)  , weiterleiten IMPRESSUM

FYI (for your information)  ,  zu deiner/Ihrer Information GESCHÄFTSFÜHRERIN: Malgorzata Schweizer

CHEFREDAKTEUR Dr. Ian McMaster (V.i.S.d.P.)
IDK (I don’t know)  ,  ich weiß es nicht
ART DIRECTOR Michael Scheufler
IMO (in my opinion)   ,  meiner Meinung nach GESCHÄFTSFÜHRENDE REDAKTEURIN
(Chefin vom Dienst) Maja Sirola
LOL (laughing out loud)  ,  haha! (wörtl.: laut lachend) AUTORIN Deborah Capras
REDAKTION Hildegard Rudolph (frei), Michele Tilgner (frei)
OMG (Oh my God)  ,  Oh, Gott!
BILDREDAKTION Sarah Gough, Judith Rothenbusch
PS (postscript)  , Nachtrag GESTALTUNG Georg Lechner
DRUCK Medienschiff Bruno, Hamburg,
re (regarding / with reference to)  , betreffend (betr.), unter Bezug-
© 2020 Spotlight Verlag, auch für alle genannten Autoren, Fotografen und
nahme auf Mitar­beiter. Der Spotlight Verlag ist ein Tochterunternehmen der Zeitverlag
R U FREE (Are you free?)  ,  Bist du / Sind Sie frei? Gerd Bucerius GmbH & Co. KG

R u there? (Are you there?)  ,  Bist du / Sind Sie da?

TBD (to be discussed)   ,  noch zu besprechen

thx (thanks)  ,  danke

TIA (thanks in advance)  ,  danke im Voraus

TTYL (talk to you later)   ,  wir sprechen später darüber

Besuchen Sie uns auf

In formal emails, we generally use the
salutation Dear Mr/Ms and the surna-
me. If you don’t know the name, write
Dear Sir or Madam.
For more informal emails, the salu-
tation is Dear, Hello or Hi and the first
name. If you don’t know the name, wri-
te Hello.

When you tell someone your email
address, say each word separately.
Spell out your name and make sure you
know how to say the different punctua-
tion marks. We say at [æt] for @.

List the contact details of the people
who will be able to deal with urgent
messages in your absence. Include
their names, positions, email addresses
and telephone numbers, including the
country code.

The German word bekommen is transla-
ted as get or receive:
 id you get my email?
● D

Don’t use become, as this means werden:

She became the head of marketing last

Instant messaging or texts are ideal for
short messages. If you’ve got somet-
hing longer to say, consider sending an
email instead. Don’t be too formal in
these kinds of messages. Write as you
would speak, and always give the other
person enough time to respond.