110705 Paul的英文分享

   Posted by: tigerhaowang   in Misclaneous

110705 Paul的英文分享


HR English Tips

Let’s help our Chinese HR friends improve their business communication skills and cross-cultural soft skills when speaking English….

1. SUBORDINATES = common mistake in china..

I have 10 subordinates… (bad way to talk) – suggests yo think you are the big boss and is a bit arrogant in tone We tend to only use the word subordinates when talking about the organogram.

“I have 10 people on my team. (good way to speak)

2. Do not use ASAP so much since its over-used in China and not specific.

Many lovely Chinese HR make email requests for action or information by: Could you send me the file ASAP thanks.

 ASAP is actually used to emphasize the need for prompt response and urgency.

If you use ASAP in every email you send when making requests.. then its rather WEIRD since you are almost saying every request is urgent. haha

 so after some time people start ignoring your ASAP since its meaningless

Chinese HR tend to be rather pushy in this way. For example the HR assistant will push the training vendors to give them a proposal tomorrow ASAP!

 But once they get the training proposal they will take weeks to get it to the attention of their HRM or action it. They push vendors just cause they want get the information and tend to not be considerate to vendors at all.

So, next time you are gonna PUSH someone vial ASAP emails…. think twice “Do I really need this ASAP”?

Maybe better to write: Could you send me the file by Friday, thanks. etc….

3. Don’t be too KIND ———————————–

“Please kindly email me the training report for the soft skills workshop, thanks.”

= Common grammar mistake in China! Redundancy is the issue here.

Please email me = ok Kindly email me = ok Just use either ‘please’ or ‘kindly’.. but not both which is equivalent to writing ‘please please email me’ haha…

 Last point for the kind Chinese friends is while we understand your aim is to come across as KIND…. you should learn that ;kindly is a formal impersonal word.

Useful for emailing suppliers once a month ‘Kindly submit your invoices..

” BUT.. not cool if you are working on a project with someone for months!

4. Chinese HR Love Problems —————————————-

“If you have any other problem, please call me.” = Chinglish :-(

“Feel free to call me if you need any more help.” = Positive English :-)

A basic soft skills concept in all languages is try to avoid using NEGATIVE words since they affect the TONE of your message.

Using your emotional intelligence, frame things in a positive light where possible.

- We need to discuss the schedule. (There is a problem with the schedule)

- It turned out to be a data capture issue. (The postal code was captured incorrectly)

 How often do you see these negative words in emails?


mistake error problem wrong late inconvenient No…

5. HR all the know the word INTRODUCE..


Could you introduce yourself?

Can you introduce your xxx background?

I want you to introduce your xxx

Try using other words also…


Could you tell me about…

Please describe….

Could you summarize your xxxx

Could you go over your ….

I’m interested in your xxx experience..


By the way, its not so friendly to ask a candidate the first question

“Could you introduce yourself?”

 - and then expect them to blah blah tell you their background long story

while you sit their sipping tea and listening.

Whether you interview the humans in Chinese or English, try being a bit INTERACTIVE and approachable and you will get more out of the 30min interview.

Could you introduce yourself?

” ————————————————

“I could.. but I would prefer to hear a bit about the job/ role first so I can then tell you about my most relevant experience / skills.

” Many of us westeners do NOT enjoy the police interrogation style HR interviews

 Could you introduce yourself?

” Could you introduce yourself?

” Could you introduce yourself?”

so try something different next time you interview a western monkey :-)

6. Chinese HR love to COOPERATE because they are so KIND


‘Cooperate’ is an word over-used in China.

Cooperate is to assist someone achieve their goal.

‘Collaborate’ is a more sexy strong business verb at times since its about working together to achieve a common shared goal.

Policeman says: Thanks for your cooperation. (assisted him)

HRD says to CIO: Look forward to collaborating with you on Project HR-IT-XX.

7. Considering Tone when writing a HR Notice


Look at the difference between the Chinese notice and the English one:

会议时请将手机关闭或设置为静音/振动状态 使用会议室,请先预定;如未预定,请勿擅自使用Ø 会议使用期间请勿打扰Ø

 Meetings – Professional Conduct Guidelines

1. Please set your mobile to silent mode or switch it off. (show mobile picture)

2. Kindly respect the ‘Do not disturb’ sign on meeting room doors. (show picture)

3. Meeting rooms may only be used if reserved in advance. (Contact details)

 You consideration for others is appreciated here, thank you.

Business Writing Principles


1. Clarity / Structure Separate the three points so that they are clearer at a glance.

2. Polite Tone Use polite and courteous formal requests to create a positive tone. You don’t want to come across as a parent telling people what NOT to do as that’s a negative tone.

3. Appeal to their consideration for others vs tell them what to do! Its more professional to try ask them to consider others than to try tell them what not to do!

Many HR do not take enough time create such functional NOTICES. They need to realise that such SMALL written notices impact your corporate culture and even your brand

So, next time you think about ask the HR intern to write up a notice – think twice!.

This entry was posted on 星期三, 七月 6th, 2011 at 3:52 下午 and is filed under Misclaneous. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.