Business English Communication (LB 160) M. A. Ghaffar
Introduction to the Course LB 160 • Business English Communication • 8 credits • EL112 is the pre-requisite for this course • Total course is consist of 16 classes @ 2classes/month • It is based on class performance, TMA, Mid-Term and final exam. • 30% marks to TMAs (15% for each TMA), 20% for Mid-term and the remaining 50% is for final exam. • Material: Softcopy as well as Printed material.
Introduction • Analysing Business Cases • Writing Successful Essays • Producing Influential Documents
Introduction • Analysing Business Cases • Mapping the case • Framing the case • Recognising influences and impacts • Identifying Problems • Proposing solutions • Evaluating the Analysis
Introduction • Writing Successful Essays • What is an essay? • The process of essay writing • The design of an essay • Writing a critical discussion • Writing a ‘costs and benefits’ essay • Quality control in essay writing
Introduction • Producing Influential Documents • What is an influential document? • Writing an academic report • Self-evaluation documents • Email communication in the workplace • Marketing and finance documents • Writing workplace proposals
What is a case study? • It’s a collection of texts: • A text is a collection of words. • A text in a different situation has different meaning. • Particular texts can be grouped into types of texts. • Texts are organised.
What type of text in a case study? • Body of the Texts: • Content: is it about a person, an organisation or a whole industry. • Organisation/Composition: is it like a story with a sequence of events happening one after the other, or it is a description with no time sequence. • Language: is it formal or informal, personal or impersonal. • Situation of Texts: • Writer: is it a business study lecturer or a journalist. • Reader: is it the writer writing for students or general public. • Purpose: is it for education, entertainment or information.
What is analysis? A text which is used for reading, and on the basis of reading writing notes or comments in your language is called analysing of texts.
How to analyse a text? • There are three things required to analyse the case study: • Input: Case study • Transformation process: Reading, thinking and writing. • Output: Case study analysis. • Example: Making plastic granules • Input: Used Plastic • Transformation: Crushing, cutting and separation. • Output: Plastic granules.
Definition • Case or case study: a text which students read about the case. • Case analysis: a text which a student writes about the case. • Analysing a business case: activity of producing a case study and if its about business activity, it is called analysing a business case.
Type of input text in business case analysis • Reading a text is totally depend on the prior knowledge of the six features of activity i.e. • Content • Organisation • Language • Writer • Reader • Purpose.
Analysing a business case needs six skills • Mapping the case; • Framing the case; • Recognising influences and impacts; • Identifying problems; • Proposing Solutions; • Evaluating the Analysis.
Description of the skills • Mapping the case: Read the case to get an overview of the situation. • Framing the case: Using business study concepts to frame the way you see the case. • Recognising influences and impacts: To go ahead, one thing leads to another is a central part of any case, to find the points which turns the situation. • Identifying Problems: Finding the reason of turning or leading the case study in different way. • Proposing Solution: creating or giving a solution for the problem. • Evaluating the Analysis: Reasons for the particular solution, then it will work out and will give the expected result. It means to pursue the reader to accept your analysis.
Mapping the Case • Creating mind Map: • Strategy-1 • Draw a mind map before you read a case study, it’s necessary to know the approach, how can understand more clearly and closely about the case. • Strategy 2 • An active reading strategy: • Be clear what output you want from reading the text; • Before you read carefully, look quickly through the text to see what it is generally about. • Consider what you already know about the case; • Think of a question that the text will answer you before you read; • Keep asking more questions while reading; • Underline high level in the text; • Write on the text; • Write notes somewhere else, not on the text, and if possible draw mind maps; • Produce a summary.
Levels in a text • There are two levels in the text: • High level • High levels comprises general statement made in the text. • Low Level: • Low levels comprises particular examples and details given to illustrate and support generalization made in the text.
Nouns and Verbs in business case study • A sentence always has at least one noun and one verb. However, when you are making notes, it is good to reduce sentences to nouns for two reasons: • Nouns, particularly abstract nouns, can contain a large amount of information. Think how much meaning there is in the abstract nouns business, competition, bankruptcy or recession. You can summarize a whole sentence or paragraph with the noun competition, for example. Abstract nouns are ideal for reducing the high-level generalizations in a text to a few words. • Nouns can be combined with other words to make noun groups.
Creating Key Concepts • Find the key concept in the text. • The key concept in the first sentence generalizes about the activities or events in the paragraph by using an abstract noun to name them. In this case, the text already contains a useful abstract noun that the note maker can use. • Combine words from the text. • This is still a key concept, but it is less general than competition on its own. To make this a more focused key concept, you have to decide which words to combine with the abstract idea, competition, and how to combine them. • Make up the key concept yourself. • The best words for the concept in this sentence are not in the original text so you have to choose words from outside the text to summarize the sentence.
Framing the case • Introduction: • When you frame a case you read it using key concepts from business studies; • By using these business studies concepts you can move from reading to analyzing, is called Framing the case. • This session will use the two reading strategies from the study reading method by using the concept of: • Think of a question that the text is going to answer for you before you read; • Keep asking more questions during reading.
Framing the case with STEP framework • A good example of an output text organised by business studies concepts is a STEP analysis: • Input: Text book, Case study or Assignment; • Transformation Process: Reading, Thinking and Writing; • Output: STEP analysis text.
STEP Analysis • All successful business must react and adapt to the environments in which they operate. Businesses have to be recognise the environments within which they operate and be able to identify those elements that may have the greatest effects upon them. There are a number of models available to assist a business in identifying these. One of these is STEP analysis. • STEP is an acronym of below mentioned words: • Social; • Technological; • Economic; • Political.
Stakeholder analysis • A conceptual framework is called stakeholder analysis. • The concept questions that are used to organise stakeholder information are: • Does this organisation or person have an interest in the business? • Does this organisation or person have power in relation to the business? • There are four catagories of high and low matrix of interest and power: • Stakeholders: • Low power and low interest (A) • Low power and High interest (B) • High power and low interest (C) • High power and high interest (D)
Recognising influences and impacts • The important features of the relationship in an organisation between events are based on Influence and Impact i.e., Cause and Effect which is used interchangeably. • How a cause live the effects on other things in business world. For example, when there is political crisis in the Middle East, petroleum retailers increase their oil prices. As a result, other retailers increase the price of their products.
Identifying the Cause and the Effect • There are three kinds of cause-and-effect relationships: • Simple: one thing causes another; • Casual chain: something leads to an effect which causes a second effect, and so on; • Multi-causality: one cause may have several effects or one effect may have several causes.
Business English Communication LB-160 Session-II
Identifying Problem • One of the key purposes of doing business case study analysis is to identify the problems that a person, company or organisation or the industry faces.
What is a problem? • Problem is a negative situation which threatens or challenges a person, organisation or industry. • For example: a fast food company receives the complains from its customers for late and cold delivery of foods. This is a problem and company needs to fix it if company wish to survive in the competitive market.
Problems and Perception • Problems are a matter of perception. • One situation may be a problem for a person but for others it may not be. • Whether a situation is considered a problem depends on how it is interpreted. • A problem therefore only exists if a person or group of people views it as such.
The Problem-solution pattern in business texts • A simple problem-solution text consists of five steps. • What is the starting situation? What is the text about? • What is the problem? • What is the cause of the problem? • What solution is proposed? • Is it successful, in your view?
Five steps • Situation • Problem • Cause • Solution • Evaluation
SWOT Framework • This acronym stands for Strength, Weakness, Opportunities and Threats. • A SWOT analysis is a means of getting a general information of how an organisation is functioning at a particular point of time. • Strengths: these are the distinctive qualities, resources or reputation of a business or an organisation – any feature which gives it an advantage over its competitors. They represent a greatest weapons or tools of a company for its success.
SWOT Framework • Weakness: These are the areas in which an organisation lacks the necessary qualities or means to perform better than its competitors. • Opportunities: In order to gain advantages over its competitors, an organisationmsut be alert to the potential openings available in its external environment, by breaking new ground, developing its products and services or expanding its scale of operation in order to gain more customers. • Threats: These are those aspects of the external environment that could harm an organisation’s performance. They often arise from the actions of competitors or factors outside the control of the organisation.
Proposing Solution • Presto, a pizza delivery company, is expanding rapidly. • However, the pizzas are often cold by the time they are delivered. • This is because there is a shortage of motorcycle delivery riders. • So Presto recruits more motorcycle delivery riders. • As a result, its customers are satisfied.
Proposing solution • Levels in a solution Texts: • High levels-Generalisation and key concepts • Low levels-examples, details, actions. • Language in the text: • Introduction: How an introduction frames an analysis as a solution. • Mark where the situation, the problem and the solution are available in the text. • Which signal word tells you where the problem step begins? • Which words tell you where the solution step begins? • Which key concept can be used to frame the solution?
Language for proposing solution • Reporting about the problem • Proposing about the solution
Justifying a proposed solution • What is the Problem? • What is your solution? • Why do you think so? • An important part of any solution is the justification about the proposed solution.
Justifying a solution • Eight ways of justifying a proposed solution: • Refer to another business where the solution was successful. • Explain that a desired outcome depends on the proposed action. • Explain that the proposal is logical (using signal words like so and therefore). • Explain that the proposal is logical (by organising the sentences to show this, but not using signal words). • Explain what the purpose of the proposed action is. • Describe the benefits of the proposed solution. • Compare the proposed solution with a different course of action. • Quote an authority figure.
How texts are structured? • Beginning paragraphs set the scene for the text. • Beginning sentences of paragraphs set the general situation of paragraph.
Evaluating the analysis • Case studies can be about: a sector (Public or Private); an industry; an organisation; or people • Case studies can be about different area of study: organisational structure, environment and processes; human resource; finance; or marketing. • Case analysis tasks can ask you to: suumarise describe; outline; explain; evaluate; compare and contrast; suggest; or recommend. • Analyses can be framed by a wide range of business concepts, including: STEP; stakeholder; SWOT; external environment; vender selection; market performance; or supply chain integration.
Organisation of a compare and contrast • A text that compares two things can be organised in one of the two ways: • Pattern 1: Describe one feature of the first thing and compare this with a feature of the second thing. Then describe another feature of the first thing and compare it with a feature of the second thing. • Pattern 2: Describe the first thing generally. Then describe the second thing generally. Then compare the feature of the both things.
Evaluation in case analysis • Evaluation=judgement+explaination+persuation • How to judge, explain and persuade: • Designing your analysis to fit with the assignment title and your audience’s expectation (i.e. Framing the case) • Summarising the case study input text (Mapping the case) • Using the case study as evidence for your explanation • Noticing how different people in the case study have different ways of framing the case • Referencing the case study and the business studies course books • Recommending your analysis to your reader • Using persuasive language
Summarising • Summarising involves three processes: • Being clear about your motivation • Selecting the information using levels in the text • Reducing the information using key concepts.
Evaluating the Analysis • Evidence • Different perspectives on the case study- An elephant and four blinds • Referencing course studies and books: • There are three main skills in referencing: • Deciding what to reference • Making sure the reference fits into the analysis • Making it clear that it is a reference.
Language for explaining how you are doing your analysis • Language of possibility • Language of certainty • Language for naming something judgmentally. • Every judgment you make in the analysis will influence your reader and persuade them to ‘buy’ your analysis.