Have a look at some frequently asked questions and Birgit`s answers
What are the differences between BUSINESS ENGLISH and a regular English course?
Birgit: If you want to be prepared for Business Talk we need to talk about your business! So, Business English means that the subject of our coaching will all about your daily work. We will also look at how to write emails, how to argue, and at useful business phrases. However, we will also look at grammar aspects and do small talk. A regular English course would focus more on grammar and on your leisure interests.
What kind of everyday professional situations do you discuss and practice in coaching? Can you give examples?
Birgit: Here are some examples: With one customer, I talk about her coaching units. She advises managers and we discuss what she could say in a training – in English.
With a couple of clients, I talk about their weekly podcast and go through workshop presentations. They practice talking fluently and correctly about that in English.
Yet another client goes through slides he works with in our meetings. He explains everything in English. My part in all these sessions is to suggest alternative or better wordings and comment on grammar aspects whenever people struggle or are unsure. It`s also my job to keep the conversation going, e.g. by asking questions, by pointing to aspects where I can spot insecurities etc.
What are the advantages of 1:1 coaching?
Birgit: With only one person to address, I can dive 100 percent into her/his world – the language she/he uses, the issues she/he needs. I can answer all questions in detail, I can fully follow her/his needs. No unnecessary information, no talking about things she/he isn’t interested in.
How often a week should the coaching take place?
Birgit: Many learners are very ambitious and want to meet twice a week. However, most of the time this doesn’t work out. A week passes by quickly! It is much more realistic to meet once a week. That leaves time to repeat things and/ or do some exercises at home.
Why should I learn with you instead of looking out for an English native speaker?
Birgit: Over the years I have discovered: it`s my advantage to be a non-native. Because I know more about why certain aspects of the English grammar cause so many problems for German speakers. Knowing German helps me to explain the logic behind the mistakes people may keep making.
How can a learner practice outside the coaching sessions? Is there any additional material?
Birgit: People will get a copy of my book with exercises and I will recommend the pages they should look at. Also, there is plenty of material – for free – on the internet. So, as soon as someone knows which aspects of English are causing you trouble, she/he can start working on their own. Also, I ask clients to integrate English into their daily life: listening to podcasts, watching English series, reading a book, writing what`s app messages in English etc.. etc…etc
When will there be first results?
Birgit: As soon as people are able to apply what they have learned about the English language in our sessions, progress can take place. Every person has her/his own learning pace, though. It depends on previous knowledge, the effort put into the issue and individual capacities for language learning. What I can promise is: People will have a much better idea / a clearer picture about what is important for fluent communication in English after my coaching sessions.
What are the most common mistakes people make?
Birgit: People are not sure about the correct use of Present Perfect. They don’t know much about which options there are to express future actions. They say “I am good in.. ” rather than “I am good at..”. Some people cannot ask questions correctly and they mistake Simple Present for Past tenses. People have rarely heard about the use of gerunds and only few know how to communicate indirect speech correctly. These are some of the most common mistakes.