Greeting a visitor
Hello, I’m Kasia Janiak from BTO Systems.
You must be Raj. Welcome to London.
Nice/Good to see you again. (when you know sb already)
- Good to see you too.
It’s a pleasure to meet you (at last). /It’s great to finally meet you in person (meeting sb for the first time)
- it’s a pleasure/Nice/Good/Great to meet you too.
Please, call me Sanne.
- And I’m Jose Marian, of course.
Apologizing for a delay
I hope you haven’t been waiting long.
- Don’t worry. I just got here ten minutes ago.
Sorry to keep you waiting. The train was on time but the traffic here is terrible.
- No problem. I know how it is.
Sorry I’m late. My flight was delayed because of bad weather.
Asking about the journey
How was the/ your flight/ journey/ drive?
- Uneventful, thankfully. / Fine, thanks.
- Not so good. The traffic was terrible.
- OK, but there was some turbulence.
You must be exhausted now.
- Oh, I’m OK. I managed to get some sleep, actually.
- I am a bit tired, I have to say.
Offering and accepting help
Can I help you with your bags? / Do you need a hand/any help with that?/Shall I take that for you?
- That would be great/ very nice/, thanks.
Would you mind taking this?
- Not at all./ Of course not.
Let me get that for you.
I’d just like to wash my hands (if that’s OK/before we get going)/.
Is there a toilet (BrE) / bathroom / restroom (AmE) around here/ somewhere?
- Yes, there’s one just this way…
Is there a café where we could sit down / get something to drink?
- Yes, there’s a nice one just over there.
- I’m not sure, but let’s see if we can find one.
Do you mind if we grab/get a quick coffee before we get going?
- Not at all.
- Actually we’re in a little bit of a hurry. Maybe we could have one later?
Taking the visitor to their hotel or the company
So, if you’ll just come this way…
The/My car is parked over here.
We can get a taxi over there.
Where are we going from here?
- I thought we could go the hotel first.
- We should probably go straight to the office, if that’s OK.
- I’ll take you to your hotel.
Is the hotel / office / conference centre far from here?
- No, it’s just 15 minutes away.
- It’s probably about a 30-minutes drive, but we have plenty of time.
Talking about plants and schedules
It’s not far now. / We’ll be there in five minutes.
I thought you might like to chick into hotel first and drop off your things.
- Sounds good. /Sure.
Would you like to check into your hotel first?
- Actually/ we can go straight to the office if you prefer.
Then we can grab/get a spot of lunch.
There’s a nice Italian place near your hotel.
After that we can go to the company.
We have the meeting with the sales team at two, as you know.
At four we’re going to visit the production plane.
That should only take an hour.
Then I’ll take you back to your hotel and you can relax for a bit.
I’ll pick you up at about seven for dinner.
We’re going to a very nice restaurant this evening.
- Sounds good. / Great.
LOOKING AFTER A VISITOR TO YOUR COMPANY
Welcoming a visitor
Hello, Ms Heitink. I’m Jose Maria Molinero.
Nice to meet you /see you again.
Welcome to Salas Design / our company.
Did you have any trouble finding us?
- No, not at all. The directions on your website / Your directions were very clear / good.
Was the driver there to meet you at the airport?
- Yes, he/she was. Thanks so much for arranging that.
- It’s the least I could do (after your long flight).
Thanks for coming down to meet me.
- No problem at all. I wasn’t sure you’d be able to find my office by yourself.
Showing a visitor around your offices
You can leave your things/ your briefcase/coat here / in my office / at the reception desk.
Would you like to leave your things here?
- That would be nice, thanks.
I’ll just leave my bag here, if that’s OK with you.
I’ll take you round to meet a few members of the team.
They’re all looking forward to meeting you.
Would you mind waiting in my office for a few minutes?
- Not at all. /Sure, no problem.
I just need to make some copies before the meeting.
I thought maybe I could just pop by Roger’s office and say hello.
Can / Could I use your bathroom (AmE)?
- Of course. I’ll just show you where it is.
If you’ll just come this way…
Here’s the left now.
After you. (when entering a lift or going through a door)
Offering a guest something to eat or drink
Would you like something to drink? Tea, coffee, water…?
So, can I get you something to drink?
- A cup of coffee would be great.
- Just a glass of water, thanks.
- I’m OK for the moment, thanks.
Can I get you a coffee? / How about a cup of tea?
- That would be great/ wonderful. Thanks very much.
How do you take your coffee?/How would you like that?
- Just black, thanks.
- With milk/cream (AmE), please.
- Milk and sugar, please.
Could I have a glass of water as well, please?
- Coming right up. /Of course.
Here you are. / Here’s your coffee. (giving a drink)
- You’re welcome. / No problem.
- Not at all. / Don’t mention it.
Shall we get some lunch?
- Sounds good. It’s been a long time since breakfast.
- Maybe I’ll just have a coffee. I’m not actually that hungry.
Where are you now? / Where is your office now?
- On the fourth floor. / Just down here.
Which floor is your office on?
- The eighth! Don’t worry – we’ll take the lift / elevator (AmE).
Where is the toilet / bathroom (AmE) / Mike’s office?
It’s just down the hall/ round the corner on the left / right.
It’s the first / second / third door on the left / right.
It’s next to the toilet / front door / kitchen.
Just go out of the door and turn left to get to the lift.
- That’s very clear, thanks. / Thanks, I’m sure I’ll find it.
- Sorry, could you explain that again?
Come with me and I’ll show you where it is!
I’ll meet you back here in ten minutes, OK?
- Sounds good. See you soon!
Small talk is talking about relatively unimportant, everyday things, e.g. weather, in order to build a relationship with someone you don’t know well.
- The latest films
- The local basketball team
- Your home town
- Your last holiday
- Your favorite movie-star
- The weather
- Your family
All controversial areas:
- The One True Path to Eternal Life
Very personal areas:
- Which hotel are you staying at?
- How long have you worked for your company?
- Did you come here by plane?
- Is this your first time in Ukraine?
- Is this your first visit to our office?
Talking about the weather
- Beautiful day, isn't it?
- Can you believe all of this rain we've been having?
- It looks like it's going to snow.
- It sure would be nice to be in Hawaii right about now.
- I hear they're calling for thunderstorms all weekend.
- We couldn't ask for a nicer day, could we?
- How about this weather?
- Did you order this sunshine?
Talking about current events
- Did you catch the news today?
- Did you hear about that fire on Fourth St?
- What do you think about this transit strike?
- I read in the paper today that the Sears Mall is closing.
- I heard on the radio today that they are finally going to start building the new bridge.
- How about those Reds? Do you think they're going to win tonight?
At the office
- Looking forward to the weekend?
- Have you worked here long?
- I can't believe how busy/quiet we are today, can you?
- Has it been a long week?
- You look like you could use a cup of coffee.
- What do you think of the new computers?
At a social event
- So, how do you know Justin?
- Have you tried the cabbage rolls that Sandy made?
- Are you enjoying yourself?
- It looks like you could use another drink.
- Pretty nice place, huh?
- I love your dress.
- Can I ask where you got it?
Out for a walk
- The tulips are sure beautiful at this time of year, aren't they.
- How do you like the new park?
- Nice day to be outside, isn't it?
- I didn't think it would be so busy today.
- You look like you've got your hands full (with children or goods).
- The bus must be running late today.
- It looks like we are going to be here a while, huh?
- I'll have to remember not to come here on Mondays.
- How long have you been waiting?
Active listening phrases
- Wow, that's sounds lovely / interesting / fascinating / fabulous / etc.!
- What was it like?
- Was it your first visit there?
- Can you tell me more?
- When did this happen?
- I can see you are feeling very angry right now.
- Many people feel the way you do.
- I can see why you feel that way.
- Yes, I see.
- I understand the situation.
- I would feel the same way
- What happened?
Ending a conversation
- It has been nice speaking with you. Have a good day!
- I have some things I need to get to but I enjoyed this conversation, take care, or see you later!
- I won't take up any more of your time but its been nice talking with you!
- Well, that sounds really nice, if you'll excuse me I've got to make an important phone call. See you soon!
- Well, enjoy the rest of the conference!
Active Listening Skills
Sample phrases for when you think your perceptions are accurate.
- I understand the problem as…
- I see the situation as…
- I’m sensing…
- Could it be that…
- I wonder if…
- Correct me if I’m wrong. …
- I get the impression that…
- Let me see if I understand. You …
- As I hear it. You…
- You feel
- From your point of view
- It seems to you
- In your experience
- From where you stand
- As you see it
- You think
- You believe
- What I hear you saying
- I’m picking up that you
- I really hear you saying that
- Where you’re coming from
- You figure
- You mean
Phrases to use when you have difficulty understanding.
- Could it be
- I wonder if
- I’m not sure if I’m with you, but
- Would you buy this idea
- What I guess I’m hearing [isn't a grammar mistake] is
- Correct me if I’m wrong but
- Is it possible that
- Does it sound reasonable that you
- Could this be what’s going on, you
- From where I stand you
- This is what I think I hear you saying
- You appear to be feeling
- It appears you
- Perhaps you’re feeling
- I somehow sense that maybe you feel
- Is there any chance that you
- Maybe you feel
- Is it conceivable that
- Maybe this is a long shot, but
- Maybe I’m out to lunch, but
- Do you feel a little
- I’m not sure if I’m with you; do you mean
- I’m not certain I understand; you’re feeling
- It seems that you
- As I hear it, you
- …is that the way it is?
- …is that what you mean?
- …is that the way you feel?
- Let me see if I understand you; you
- Let me see if I’m with you; you
- I get the impression that
- I guess that you’re