Feb 12, 2010

January/February Reading: Talk Smart at the Holiday Office Party

Stay clear of conversation faux pas that can derail your career.

By Don Gabor

As a Toastmaster, you know that all speaking is public speaking – whether you are giving a Table Topics presentation at your local club or making small talk with colleagues and clients at the holiday office party. Of course, if an “ah” or “um” slips into one of your speeches, probably no one (except perhaps another Toastmaster) will ever know.

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faux pas /ˏfoˋpɑ /plural faux pas /-ˋpɑz/ [countable noun]
►an embarrassing mistake in a social situation
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--She is renowned around the world for her sense of style, but yesterday she made an fashion faux pas of the worst kind.

letting your hair down
►Behave in a free or uninhibited manner.
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--Now that he's passed his exams and got his qualifications he's decided to let his hair down (=behave informally).

passé /pæˋse/adjective
►no longer modern or fashionable
--A lot of people are down on Windows Forms as something passe.
--Neon colors are already passé.

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