Unit 27: Getting down to business | Cách trình bày khi có tin không vui

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It’s the big day and Mr Socrates is about to arrive at the offices of Tip Top Trading. Unfortunately, it looks like bad news for the team! What is on the agenda? What is he going to say? And more importantly will he get his freshly squeezed orange juice?

Language for delivering bad news

This episode focuses on the best way to deliver bad news.

Phrases from the programme:

  • I’ve got to give it to you straight
  • The outlook is gloomy
  • I’ve got to announce a profit warning

Listening Challenge

Which market does Mr Socrates want to focus the business on?

The answer is at the bottom of the transcript below:

Transcript

Narrator
Hello again. It’s the big day and Mr Socrates is about to arrive at the offices of Tip Top Trading to talk officially to the team. What is he going to say? And more importantly, will he get his freshly squeezed orange juice?

Tom
Quickly everybody… he’s coming out of the lift with Paul.

Denise
Anna quickly, get a glass of orange juice ready.

Paul
…and if we come through this door here we get to the office and… morning everyone. I’m sure we’ve all met Mr Socrates on the day of the… fire… but today everything is a bit calmer and well he’s here to say hello.

Mr S
Hi!

Denise
Biscuit Mr Socrates?

Mr S
Biscuit? You mean a goddamn cookie. Thanks.

Anna
Err, Mr Socrates, I’m Anna. Would you like some orange juice – freshly squeezed?

Mr S
You betcha as long as it’s made from Florida oranges. Hey… Anna? Ain’t you the girl who booked my hotel room?

Anna
Oh yes, sorry about the bed and…

Mr S
Hey, you got me a new room, it was great. You did a good job there. Well done.

Anna
Oh thanks.

Tom
Hello. It’s Tom. I recommended the hotel, it was a…

Paul
Tom. Everyone, shall we gather round and hear what Mr Socrates has to say? Please.

Mr S
Hey… errr, what’s your name…

Paul
Paul.

Mr S
Yeah you. Don’t you think I should be sitting in the big chair?

Paul
Sorry. Yes of course. (Shuffling) There you go.

Mr S
Now. Tip Top Trading. I gotta give it to you straight. Things ain’t looking good, in fact the outlook is gloomy. The global recession has led to a meltdown in the plastic fruits sector. And I’ve got to announce a profit warning. We just ain’t selling enough of these bananas, oranges and lemons to make any money.

Paul
There’s a bit of an economic squeeze on lemons!

Mr S
What?!

Anna
(To herself) Oh dear. I’m not sure what he’s talking about but it sounds bad.

Narrator
It is Anna. He’s delivering some bad news without hiding the truth. That’s why he said “I’ve got to give it to you straight”. He said “the outlook is gloomy” which it means the future doesn’t look good. And he mentioned a “profit warning”, which means company profits are probably going to go down.

Anna
Crikey! That is bad. What does it mean?

Narrator
Just keep listening for now.

Mr S
…so, this calls for action. I’m going to have to…

Tom
(interrupts) Oh no, not me Mr Socrates, I’ve been a loyal employee, I couldn’t face being unemployed.

Denise
Tom, calm down.

Mr S
I’m not talking about redundancies yet.

Paul
Gosh, well that calls for another biscuit.

Mr S
My plan is… we’re going into Europe.

Anna
You mean we’re moving to Europe?

Paul
No, no Anna. I think he means we’re going to sell plastic fruit to the European market.

Tom
Oh right! Great. Mr Socrates, I’ve lots of experience with Europe. I had a holiday in Spain once… twice actually.

Denise
Well we’ll have to make sure our phones can make international calls.

Mr S
Hmm. I think you’re gonna need some help with this, so I’m bringing in my best marketing executive, Rachel. What she doesn’t know about selling to Europe, you don’t wanna know. She’ll be here in a few weeks’ time.

Denise
Do you know if she prefers tea or coffee… or orange juice perhaps?

Mr S
Look Diana…

Denise
Denise…

Mr S
Denise. Like Dennis right? She’ll want the best – the best tea, coffee, the best team. I’ll expect improved results and profits. If not your necks will be on the line – especially yours Paul.

Paul
(nervously) Oh, chop chop. We’d better get to work.

Narrator
scary! “Your necks will be on the line” – he means their jobs will be at risk if things don’t improve. It’s a worrying time for Tip Top Trading. Let’s remind ourselves of the phrases Mr Socrates used to deliver bad news:
I’ve got to give it to you straight
The outlook is gloomy
I’ve got to announce a profit warning
Let’s hope this new marketing strategy for Europe is going to work. How are you feeling Anna?

Anna
A little nervous. But I’m going to try my best to make sure this new strategy works.

Narrator
That’s the spirit Anna!

Paul
Right everyone. I think we need to take Mr Socrates down to the Rose and Crown after work for a pint or two and show him some true English hospitality. How about it?

Mr S
I don’t drink.

Paul
Ah well, perhaps some lemonade?

Narrator
Oh dear. This should be interesting. Until next time, bye!

Listening challenge – answer

Which market does Mr Socrates want to focus the business on?
The European market.


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