Business English - BEP 34c - Clarifying What Was Said

Welcome back to Business English Pod for today’s lesson on how to clarify what was said during a conversation.

Communication is rarely easy. There’s so much that can go wrong in a conversation, especially on the phone. We might not hear someone well, we might hear them incorrectly, and we might not understand words or expressions in the same way. For that reason, we need to be able to clarify what was said.

There are a few basic ways to clarify that are extremely useful. We can use “WH” questions, like who, what, where, when, and why. We can ask people to repeat what they said and repeat things for people when they haven’t understood us. And we can use tag questions to confirm that we’ve heard correctly.

Today we’ll listen to a telephone conversation between three colleagues: Benny, Wim, and Andre. They are speaking on the phone for the first time in a while. During their conversation, they use several expressions to clarify what was said.

Listening Questions

1. What does the receptionist say that Benny doesn’t understand right away?
2. What question does Benny ask that Wim needs repeated?
3. What question does Benny restate about the river in Rotterdam?

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