Why you need to speak English well when you have your own business

By 22 August 2022 Non classé One Comment
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Is your English hurting your business?

I talk to a lot of entrepreneurs who tell me it is. Today we’ll talk about why you need English for business. AND you’ll learn one strategy you can start using NOW to get a competitive advantage doing business in English. And no, you don’t have to speak perfect English to do it. Let’s go!

This lesson is part 1 of a series designed to help you find more clients–in English. Be sure to check back next week to find out exactly what to say to a new potential client in the first 5 minutes of your conversation. And be sure you sign up for my newsletter so that you get an invitation to the next live masterclass that will help you contact new clients in English. 

Today we’ll talk about why you need English if you run a business today. What happens when your English isn’t good enough so that your English can grow. 

We’ll also talk about one step you can take today to solve your English problem and your business problem. And you’ll learn one secret strategy you can start using today to help you succeed in business communication with the English you have. 

Ready? 

Take the quiz at the end of this lesson!

Did you know that I’ve created a quick and easy quiz to go with this lesson so that you can practice everything you see here today? I want you to make this part of the English you actually use in real life! To try out today’s quiz, just scroll down to the last section and you’ll find the instructions there…and the answers too!


What you’ll learn in this article:

1.  Why entrepreneurs (YOU) need English for Business
2. What it feels like when you’re English hurts your business.
3. Solving your English (& business)problem. You CAN do it.
4. English for entrepreneurs strategy #1: fix your biggest problem first!
5. A Business English secret for entrepreneurs: the end depends on the beginning.
6. Your advantage doing business in English. 


1. Why entrepreneurs (YOU) need English for Business.

How does it hurt your business when you don’t feel confident in English? Let me tell you a story:

A client of mine, let’s call her Fatima, had a business that offered training to other businesses–but not in English. International clients found her online–and wanted to train their team with her.  

BUT–she had to say “no.” She didn’t offer her service in English, and she was afraid that she couldn’t do it well.  

Can you imagine it? The client contacts YOU. But you have to say ‘no’ because…you don’t feel confident in English. 

Here’s another story for you, about someone we’ll call Manuel. 

He knew his clients were in the US. But…he was afraid to meet with them virtually. Because then he would have to get on Teams and actually…talk to them. 

So he only did business by email. Not the best way to reassure clients.

If you’re still wondering if your English is hurting your business you need to read this article from Harvard Business review. It’s called:
Global Business Speaks English.

We’ve talked about what happens when you run a business and your English holds you back. But how does it feel? 

You may already know. And you’re not alone. 

Also check out my lesson: How to Pitch Your Business in Conversations.


2. What it feels like when you’re English hurts your business:

When you’re smart and competent and good at running a business…BUT. Your English gets in the way, it feels terrible. 

I’ve talked to people who run a company but have to hire someone to go to conferences, or who run a team but who feel less credible in front of younger team members who are fluent in English.

You might feel like some of my clients feel:
Embarrassed, ashamed or even incompetent in front of your team.  Because you’re the owner, or a senior member, but…

You have to send someone else to the international conference…who has better English. 
Your team knows you’re afraid to get in touch with the clients who could really help your business change. YOU know too. 

You deserve better. 
And do you know what stops a lot of people from changing?

They’re afraid it’s going to be hard. 

Are You an Entrepreneur Who Needs English for Your Business?  Then you need these emails!  Get  “8 Must-Have Emails for Entrepreneurs–in English.” 


3. Solving your English (& business)problem. You CAN do it.

I want you to learn one thing today. If your English is hurting your business–that’s something you can change.

I’ve seen a lot of business owners and entrepreneurs learn that too.  
Like Manuel, or Fatima…or maybe you.

I’ve seen a lot of people stop saying “no” to international business. And say “yes” instead. 

You’re right to think it will take work. But here’s why I know you can do it. 

You can do the work–you already have your own business.
You’re right to think you’ll have to try new strategies and innovate–and if you run your own business, you’re already used to that. 

Here’s one last reason I know you can do this: 

You can start with the English you have. 
What does that mean?

A lot of people think you need perfect English…or you had to live in an English-speaking country to do business in English.
That’s another mistake that keeps people from saying “yes” to doing business in English. 

Today, I want to share Manuel and Fatima’s stories…and more importantly show you HOW you can change your business, starting with the English you have. 

Also check out my lesson: Introducing Yourself in English in Meetings


4. English for entrepreneurs strategy #1: fix your biggest problem first!

Let me give you the advice I give people like Manuel or Fatima: 

Think of the most important way that English is stopping you from reaching your business goals.
And fix that first. 

Start with something that will have the most impact. And a lot of times, you’ll realize it’s something totally possible when you pick one thing. 

Some people focus on writing a couple of great emails to send out to new contacts. Others fix the English on their websites.

What ONE thing should you focus on?
It depends on your business, but there is one thing I can think of that you will need…

Are You an Entrepreneur Who Needs English for Your Business? 

Then you need these emails!  Get  “8 Must-Have Emails for Entrepreneurs–in English.” 


5. A Business English secret for entrepreneurs: the end depends on the beginning

Eventually, like Manuel, and Fatima, you will have to actually meet your client. Or talk with them on the phone or on Zoom. And you have to be ready. It sounds scary. But it’s something you can do. And knowing how to reach out the right way can give you an advantage over native speakers.  

You just need to understand one thing: in business conversations in English, the end result depends on the beginning of your conversation.  And the thing that most people don’t know is that the very beginning of your conversation with a new client matters a LOT.

In fact, I’d like to share an article with you that was written for advanced English speakers or native speakers. It’s an entire article on How to Start a Business Conversation. 

An entire article on the first 5 minutes of your conversation? Yes, because it’s that important.  

If you don’t have time to read everything there, let me give you one takeaway from the article that matters to you, today:  

The article talks about “Superstar Sellers” and what makes them different from others.
The great news for you is that you don’t need perfect English to do it. You just need to pay attention to the person you’re talking to.
How? 

Build rapport and focus on the first 10 minutes of your conversation. 
That means you’re in control of your business success in English.

You can start now with the English you have. 
I’m sure you can get ready for a 10-minute, simple conversation about the person you’re talking to.
And most people don’t take the time to learn this skill. Not even native speakers. So if you do that, you’ll already be ahead of most people!

Also check out my lesson: 5 Cold Calling Tips for Non-Native English Speakers | Learn English


6. Your advantage doing business in English.

Are you ready to give yourself an advantage doing business in English? You deserve it–and you deserve success with your business too. 

And I’m passionate about helping you get there. Be sure to sign up for the newsletter so that you can see the next lesson on starting conversations with new clients–and get an exclusive invitation to my next masterclass too!

Your Quiz!  

Today’s quiz is simple, but it’s designed to help you think about what really matters when you want to change your English and your business.
Just mark True or False next to each statement and see if you have the right mindset to get started changing your English today. 

______ To get the English you need, you’ll have to move to an English-speaking country.

______ To change your English and your business, you should be prepared to work and try new strategies.

______ You can’t start with the English you have. Take a school program and then try again when your English is perfect. 

______To succeed in business you have to learn an entire 45-minute sales conversation from memory, with no mistakes!

______To succeed in business conversations, focus on the first 10-minutes of the conversation. And focus on the other person. 


Improve your English in the comments

The best way to become more confident using Business English is to practice!
Here’s your Confidence Challenge for this week:

  1. What is blocking you, or holding you back when it comes to doing business with clients in English?
  2. Use it in a sentence in the comments.

If you learned something from this lesson, please share it with your coworkers & friends. You can send your message to them in English for more practice!

Click here to share this article on LinkedIn
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Are You an Entrepreneur Who Needs English for Your Business? Then you need these emails!

We asked our community of entrepreneurs about the emails they need to send NOW to grow their businesses. These are the emails they need to make new contacts, and turn them into clients…or maybe just get paid for the work you did!

We also asked our entrepreneurs what business emails were the hardest to write. 

Then, we created 8 perfect email models so that you can write an email that is effective and polite–fast. Because you need email to start a conversation with your international clients.

And because you shouldn’t have to spend an hour writing an email in English–and then wondering if you said that right. 

Get  “8 Must-Have Emails for Entrepreneurs–in English.” 

…and write emails that can change your business today. 

More good stuff…

Click the image to learn more

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