A (usually) daily bulletin of English language usage, English grammar and communication skills tips,
lifestyle news and FLUENTRUSSIA events and activities.
Wednesday June 19, 2019




Word of the Day

Today's Word of the Day is: "cordial" (adj.)

Grammar Tip

What Is a Preposition?

Business Communication Skills Tip

This Google Manager Shares His Secrets for Building an Effective Team

FR Lifestyle

Head out to the Tolstoy Theater Festival July 4-7

Word of the Day

Сordial (adj.)

Today's Word of the Day is: "cordial" (adj.)

Transcription: [ˈkɔː.di.əl]

Russian Translation: радушный, теплый

Definition: friendly, but formal and polite

Example: The talks were conducted in a cordial atmosphere.

Synonyms: welcoming, friendly

Grammar Tip

Grammar Tip

What Is a Preposition?

“Vampires! Zombies! Werewolves!” “Where?!” “Behind you!”

Thank goodness for prepositions. Imagine not knowing where the danger lay…Prepositions tell us where or when something is in relation to something else.

Prepositions often tell us where one noun is in relation to another (e.g., The coffee is on the table beside you- Кофе на столе рядом с тобой.). But they can also indicate more abstract ideas, such as purpose or contrast (e.g., We went for a walk despite the rain- Мы пошли гулять несмотря на дождь.).

Business Communication Skills Tip

Business Communication Skills Tip

This Google Manager Shares His Secrets for Building an Effective Team

Matt Sakaguchi is a site reliability manager at Google. Learn why he believes that a team of all stars doesn’t always lead to an all-star team.

Psychological safety. This is the idea that you can take a personal risk, and it won’t be held against you. You can make a mistake and won’t be ridiculed. That you can bring your whole self to work and be accepted.

Dependability. At Google, we have a very high standard of work. So, if I am collaborating on a project, I need to depend on my teammates to deliver that standard of work. Otherwise, I have to do everything myself. If you feel like you can’t depend on each other, that’s going to be a problem and you will have an undistributed (нераспределённый) amount of people on work.

Structure and Clarity. Not necessarily more, but enough. We found that when you add more structure and clarity to ineffective teams, meaning everyone understands their rules and responsibilities, their effectiveness increases. If you already have an effective team, adding more structure and clarity actually hinders (препятствовать) effectiveness. If it’s not broken, don’t fix it.

Meaning. The job has to be meaningful to the person or to the company. You have to have a personal investment in the work or after a while, there’s no way you’re going to be a top contributor.

Impact. You want to be able to see the impact of what you’re doing. For example, if you’re on a sales team, you can see that you’re meeting quota. You want to be able to see the fruits of your labor.

FR Lifestyle

Head out to the Tolstoy Theater Festival July 4-7

A new, expanded Tolstoy Theater Festival will take place in Yasnaya Polyana on July 4-7.

Yasnaya Polyana is the ancestral estate of Leo Tolstoy, which is now a museum that has kept everything exactly as it was in 1910, the year of the writer’s death. Tolstoy’s house, in a beautiful setting not far from Tula, is still in pristine (первоначальный) condition, full of books and paintings by Ilya Repin, Valentin Serov, and Ivan Kramskoi.

This year’s festival is all about Anna Karenina. There will also be a food court, an extensive (широкий) program for children, as well as an educational program. For more information about the schedule, tickets, and travel, see the festival site https://tolstoyfestival.ru/