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Speaking English Means Using Vocabulary Correctly

Business English requires understanding words with multiple meanings, like 'to see'.

*EDITOR’S NOTE: This article makes reference to something called “multi-words,” which is ECSC’s own term for vocabulary that contains more than one word.

Most people speaking English today are familiar with the verb ‘to see’. It means being aware of something by using your eyes. And did you know that many studies say the verb ‘to see’ is one of the top 100 most common vocabulary words in English?

In fact, ‘to see’ has more than a dozen different meanings and uses in English!

In this blog post, you will learn how to use ‘see’ in three other ways in Business English communication that you may not be familiar with.

SEE YOU TO / OUT One way of using the verb ‘to see’ is when it means to take someone to a specific place (i.e. by going with them or escorting them). This is usually used if the other person is unfamiliar with the place (like visiting an office or building for the first time). For example, if you have finished a meeting with a client at their office, and you are not familiar with the building or how to exit, your client might say: “I will see you to the front door” or “I will see you out.” This means the client will walk with you to the front door of the office or outside the building. I SEE Another use of the verb ‘to see’ which some people speaking English may not be familiar with is to understand another person’s idea or opinion, but not completely agree with it. This is commonly used at workplaces to politely disagree and share your different opinion. For example, you might have an English conversation with a coworker about a new company tardiness policy. Your coworker may say they disagree with the new policy because it is too strict, but you may not completely agree with your coworker’s opinion. So, you can say “I see what you mean, but I think it’s important for the company to track employee tardiness” or “I see your point, but the company must monitor tardiness to maintain productivity.” This tells the other person you understand their opinion, but you have a different opinion. I’LL SEE The final new use of the verb ‘to see’ is when it means to try to do something. This is common Business English used at work when a person is asked to do a task which is difficult, has a time limit or deadline, or the person doesn’t know if they can complete the task. For example, if your coworker asks you “Can you help me add some animations to this PowerPoint presentation?” or “Can you complete the report before lunch?”, you can reply by saying “I’ll see what I can do.” This tells the other person you are not sure you can do it, but you will try your best to complete the task. We hope this blog post helps you understand more ways of speaking English with the verb ‘to see’, which will not only improve your English understanding and vocabulary skills, but also help you communicate more effectively using Business English phrases at work.
Be sure to check back later for Part 2 of this blog post for even more uses of the verb ‘to see’, and we will see you then! *Btw, did anyone have to look up the meaning of tardiness? 🙂

To learn more about multi-words vocabulary and how it can help you and your coworkers speak English more confidently, contact ECSC today.

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