English at Work 6 – Double-booked

It’s chaos at Tip Top Trading. Tom is in a panic; he has arranged more meetings than he can cope with and is going to have to face some unhappy clients. Anna decides to step in.

Anna: ‘Look forward to hearing from you soon. Kind regards, Anna.’
Denise: (on the phone) .. And Margery said: ‘I don’t think I’ve ever seen a vegetable quite that size before..’
Paul: Where’s that hole-punch?!
Narrator: Ah, business as usual in the offices of Tip Top Trading.
Tom: Oh for goodness sake! What a disaster! I can’t believe it!
Narrator: But one member of the team seems bothered.
Tom: Arrgh!
Narrator: Anna, this is the moment to show you’re willing to help.
Anna: Yes!
Narrator: Use phrases like ‘Is there anything I can do?’ ‘Let me help!’ or, to be more informal, you can say, ‘Can I give you a hand?’ or ‘Give me a shout if you need anything!’
Anna: Right.
Narrator: Go on!
Anna: Are you okay Tom?
Tom: No.
Anna: Is there anything I can do?
Tom: No.
Anna: Oh. What’s wrong?
Tom: Everything.
Anna: I see. Can I give you a hand?
Tom: My computer has crashed. I’ve lost my phone. And there’s a big, big problem with my timetable. I’ve got two meetings scheduled at the same time with two extremely important clients. I can’t do them both at once!
Anna: Let me help.
Tom: Thanks Anna, but these are big, big clients. They need someone of experience.
Anna: Well, give me a shout if you need anything!
Tom: I can handle this, alright?
Narrator: ‘I can handle this’.. ungrateful idiot. But you used all the right phrases Anna, well done. Anyway, I bet he’ll change his mind.
Denise: Oooh, I know, and the purple ones are so much more powerful..
Tom: Anna? Could you help me?
Narrator: Ha! I told you so!
Tom: They’ve both arrived at once! Oh god! I’ll deal with Mrs Kumquat..
Anna: Okay.
Tom: You talk to Mr Lime, he’s from a company called Citrus Ventures. They own hundreds of juice bars.
Denise: Are you sure that’s a good idea Tom?
Tom: I don’t have much choice, do I?
Denise: Well I could-
Tom: Just keep him occupied Anna, tell him how great he is.. no, no, tell him how great I am. Find out what he wants. If it’s about the – well, never mind, just be nice.
Anna: Understood.
Tom: Mr Lime! Are you well?
Mr Lime: Yes, but I’m actually rather angry too.
Tom: Ah, well let me introduce you to Anna!
Anna: Mr Lime, it’s a pleasure to meet you! Let me help with your coat.
Mr Lime: Oh er.. Thank you.
Anna: Can I give you a hand with your scarf too, Mr Lime?
Mr Lime: Oh.. Thanks.
Anna: Now, please come this way and you can tell me what’s wrong.
Narrator: Well done! Anna used some good phrases to step in and help with this mess. Let’s hear them again:
Is there anything I can do?
Let me help.
Can I give you a hand?
Give me a shout if you need anything.
Narrator: But Mr Lime is obviously upset about something. What is it? And how will Anna deal with the problem? Let’s hope it doesn’t end in disaster!


















 

BBC English at Work


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