:::

104年「文采飛揚」訓後成果徵文比賽投稿專區(活動已結束) → 【指定主題區】英文寫作(English Writing)(英文類作品)【不限英語課程參訓學員】

Etiquette Is The Best Strategy 2015-05-26 13:10:09
Tainan, acclaimed as the Kyoto of Taiwan, is the oldest city in our country with various historic heritages and traditional culture. It has so special and unique conditions of becoming a city of international tourism and culture. Pascal Smet, the Flemish minister of education of Belgian, said that: “For the next twenty years, English will dominate as a global language. It is the language of the political world, of the diplomatic world, the tourism sector. If Brussels wants to be an international city, it should go even further and declare English as an official language of the city.” Considering that, the Tainan mayor William Lai decides to actively promote English as the second official language of Tainan city government. The civil service development institute also offers a course catalog including a series of English learning courses or training workshops. The institute invites all the staff of the city government to participate these courses or workshops enthusiastically.

I participated in a training course about reception and telephone etiquettes by English in December 2014. The lecturer, Lily Lin, is the professor of department of applied English of Southern Taiwan University of Science and Technology with English-teaching experience for more than fifteen years. She adopted the language immersion method all over this eighteen-hour course. In other words, Lily talked to students in English and encouraged students to communicate with each other in English as possible as they could. During the first fifteen hours of the course, we learned useful telephone vocabulary and phrases in English and practiced how to concisely introduce one’s job in English. In addition, Lily emphasized the importance of interaction etiquettes and the strategies of positive communication or negotiation. For example, we must try to answer calls by second ring, remember courtesy during the phone conversation, give callers the extension we are transferring them to, and politely ask callers if they would like to remain on hold and how long the wait will be. Then it would be very useful to employ some strategies of positive communication or negotiation as follows:
1. Apologize first. You could say, “Please accept my sincere apology for any inconvenience this may have caused you.”
2. Soft them up with sincerity. For example, I am sorry to upset you but I want you to know that getting to the bottom of this is just as important to me as it is to you.
3. Take cool and neutral attitudes. We have to realize that people get irritated when they don’t immediately get the help they need.
4. Ask the customer to think reasonably.
5. Show your empathy. If I were in your shoes, I am sure I would feel just as you do.
6. Show your appreciation. We appreciate customers who let us know when things are not right.

At the last three-hour lesson, each group had to perform a situation drama in English to present learning effort. The drama of my group was adapted from a real case happened in the Household Registration Office, West Central District. A man went to a temple for asking the deities why he didn’t feel well recently. The deities pointed out that it’s due to the lack of ancestor names in the ancestral tablet and suggested him to go to a household office to apply for a complete pedigree. Hence the man went to the household office and then communicated in sequence with the staff of information counter, household records section and the section chief. In this case, the key point was the limitation of applying for a pedigree. According to the law, people would be allowed to apply for ancestors’ records limited to three-degree relatives only. However the man wanted to get information as much as possible. It’s against the rules obviously. Then an argument took place immediately between the man and the clerks. Finally the section chief persuaded him to come back with his father or grandfather next time to apply for a more detailed pedigree and sincerely apologize to the man for the inconvenience this may caused him. This situation drama gives an instance of solving problems by etiquettes and communicating strategies.

In Professor Lin’s training course of reception and telephone etiquettes, I got very useful viewpoints. Even though there’s almost no chance to use English in my workplace, it’s still beneficial to make flexible use of the strategies of positive communication or negotiation when talking to my colleagues or citizens in Chinese. Studying English may be a nightmare to some people, but please remember that “There is nothing so difficult but it becomes easy by practice.” Neil Armstrong, the first person to walk on the Moon, said in 1969 that: “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” The mayor William Lai has the foresight to wish English becoming the second official language of Tainan city. This is one small step for Tainan government and one giant leap for Tainan city.