It is the result of a four-month internship at For.me.sa., the thesis of recently graduated Giorgia Balestrieri, who completed her studies at the Department of Linguistic and Cultural Studies of the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, with an exploratory study about the use of communication in the working enviroment and particularly on modern epistolary strategies.
Balestrieri’s study focuses on a considerable number of emails exchanged with some Asian suppliers. “Got it!” – Effective communication strategies in BELF emails. A case study on For.me.sa. Srl.”. is, indeed, an investigation of those mechanisms that we consciously adopt in the working environment, when we need to understood one another in an effective way by reaching the goal.
In this scenario, the following factors contribute equally: firstly linguistic skills, our level of confidence with the English, meaning the Esperanto of business, but also our ability to understand the cultural references of the interlocutor and, finally, the level of working competences, understood as know-how (it turns out once again that it is the English helps us with an internationally comprehensible definition).
In today’s globalized world, business communication is characterized by the ever increasing use of English as a lingua franca (BELF – business English as a lingua franca), among speakers coming from various linguistic and cultural contexts. In this scenario, – we read in the thesis introduction- the email represents the main means of communication used by companies, both for internal and external communication. However, despite the importance acquired by this genre, the emails remain a source of misunderstandings or misinterpretations, which can affect business communication. For this reason, the development of pragmatic skills and knowledge of various communication strategies have taken on a key role for workers in solving communication problems and achieving effective interactions.
Obviously, in For.me.sa. we have already benefit from the advices on corrective actions in order to improve the communication strategy with our partners and could finally exclaim Got it!
Editor’s note: The names of the speaker and the co-rapporteur have been deliberately obscured for privacy reasons.