125 – Business Secrets 1

This podcast is the first of a four part series on business secrets. We talk about great ideas and vocabulary for business and daily life.

ESL Conversation

A:  Who do you think will be the big winners in business over the next couple of years?

B:  I don’t have a crystal ball but I really believe that people who are adaptable, can speak English and another language well, people who understand the internet, and people who can network well will be at a huge advantage.  Moreso now than ever before.

A:  What is it about the current landscape of the global economy that values these skillsets?

B:  Rapid technological change and a massive transfer of wealth from rich to poor countries are two major trends that will continue well into the foreseeable future.  People who take advantage of these trends will be ahead of the game and become rich, while those who sit around hoping that change won’t happen will be left in the dust.

A:  Can you give any specific examples?

B:  Take education for example.  Because of technology, it’s now possible for a professor to give a high quality video lecture to anyone around the world who has an Internet connection.  That was unheard of less than 20 years ago.  There is so much untapped business potential it’s ridiculous.
A:  Why is learning English more important now than ever before? 

B:  There are many reasons but one is that English is the international language.  The majority of new cutting edge ideas will be talked or written about either first or second in English.  People with a decent understanding of English as well as business, will be able to stay ahead of the curve and apply these new ideas to make a fortune in their own country.

Crystal ball
  Some "fortune tellers" look into a "crystal ball" and pretend to be able to tell the future.  Most people now think this is completely ridiculous.  So often, if someone is trying to predict the future, they may start with, "I don’t have a crystal ball but…"  That basically means, I can’t promise you that I can really see the future, but it seems to me that it might go this way because of something.

I don’t have a crystal ball but I really can’t see that relationship lasting very long.  They fight all the time. 

Landscape This word is used a lot in many different contexts.  In this case, "the landscape of the global economy" is basically talking about what the global economy is really like. 

Transfer of wealth:  A "transfer of wealth" is money going from one place to another.  Right now, for example, there is a major transfer of wealth between the USA and China.  The Chinese, on average, are getting relatively richer than the average American. 

Foreseeable future The "foreseeable future" is a term that is talking about how far in the future it is sensible to really talk about.  For example, it’s pretty ridiculous to try to predict what the world will be like in 1000 years. 

I don’t think anyone in the foreseeable future will be able to run faster than Usain Bolt.

Be ahead of the game:  If you are "ahead of the game" it means that you know more than most people in your situation about something.

He’s only 15 and he’s already been accepted to Harvard University.  He’s really ahead of the game.

Left in the dust If you "leave someone in the dust" it means that you move past them in some sort of competitive environment. 

They left all their competition in the dust after they hired their new CEO.

Unheard of:  If something is "unheard of" it means that it is something that is unimaginable.

60 years ago it was unheard of for a kid to yell at his teacher.  Now it happens all the time.

UntappedIf something is "untapped" it means it has a lot of unused potential.

A lot of big oil companies want to drill in Alaska because there is a lot of untapped resources.  Many people don’t want them to drill for oil there because of what it could do to the environment.

Ahead of the curve If you are "ahead of the curve" it basically means you are "ahead of the game".

You should read more if you want to stay ahead of the curve in your industry.


13 Responses to “125 – Business Secrets 1”

  1. Vishal Says:

    ……..drill in Alaska because there \’is\’ a lot of untapped resources.

    Shouldn\’t it read:

    ……..drill in Alaska because there \’are\’ a lot of untapped resources.

  2. Gopal Says:

    Very nice new words/phrases to learn. Thanks Andy and your team.

  3. yahya Says:

    this is a very nice lesson, alot of decent new stuff. Thanks guys.

  4. Martha Says:

    I live in Egypt, Iam an ESL instructor and I like your lessons alot,They are very useful and interesting,Nice work.

  5. Jacobo Chamorro Says:

    Hey guys. Thanks a lot for your work. You really do good stuff. Seriously, thanks a lot.
    I really think you’re quite good. I’m studying English by myself using several very good sources (Effortless English, BetteratEnglish, Just Vocabulary,..) and, well, your are the best. No doubt. Not to say that you are not trying to build any kind of new church of leaders of the world or something like that. It’s not just about English, I think the great thing with you is that what you say is quite interesting by itself.
    Well, only one more thing. I’ve downloaded all your shows and lately I’ve been listening to the oldest ones. What have shocked me is that while in the first shows you two spoke equally, in the more recent ones it seems that the old brother wants the micro only for him (or either that the young brother has become quite shy). What happens guys? It was better when you both contributed equally to this great show.
    Thanks again from Barcelona.

  6. Hale Says:

    Hi guys,

    Another great lesson. I really enjoyed it. Thanks for all the fun you give us with these great lessos.

    I amnot a VIP member, but I am taking as much advantage as possible from your free influential lessons. It has been very effective so far.

    Good luck

  7. seaocean Says:

    Dear Andy,

    Thanks for leaving a message on my profile on and inviting me to check out your website.

    I just listened to this episode and I found it awesome, practical and well-explained. Although I\’m an English teacher right here in Taiwan, I still try to study English hard and hopefully I can upgrade my English to another level. In my opinion, your website is definitely on my list and I\’ll recommend it to my students.

    Keep up the good work and thank you for sharing this invaluable info with me.


  8. Alex Says:

    Hi everybody! Thanks for doing it guys. Really informative. For those of u who want to sound and speak like americans – a piece of advice. Go to if u wanna hear a lot of fun and laugh you butt off! It\’s hilarious!

  9. mohammad Says:

    salam pls send for me 125

  10. Wilson Says:

    Hi Guy.

    Well done.

    I ´m from Brazil and I´ve been studying english for long time. I love english so much. Your work helps me a lot.

    Best Regards.


  11. Nicola Says:

    Great job guys. I love your discussion. You talk about of interesting things. Italy loves you !

  12. Daniel Says:

    Hi guys!
    I just found your lessons and downloaded your podcasts. I´m impressed with the quality of each podcast.
    I learned a lot listening and you really know what does it means to learn a second language. I think that´s why the high level of your lessons.
    Thanks a lot
    Warm regards from Argentina.

  13. Schlaumeier Says:

    I’ve got one point of inquiry, so here is how I’d respond on the Add’s question
    A: Why is learning English more important now than ever before?

    Nowadays, English is the most efficient way of information exchanging between people and its understanding is compulsory if you want to get ahead of your competitors, as all cutting-edge ideas are going from West, so it would be ridiculous not to retrieve benefit from learning English language now.

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