Curso Avanzado de Inglés de Negocios



LECCION 7 - PAGINA 2   índice del curso   página anterior   página siguiente



Listening and Checking with Transcription

In this third step, listen to the conversation again while you read the transcription. Finally, read the glossary information, phrasal verbs (highlighted in yellow) and notes at the bottom. This step also means good practice for your reading comprehension skills. To get information in Spanish, just place the arrow of your mouse on any highlighted word without clicking.

Collecting Bad Debts

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(In the Accounts Department) 


Good morning, Mr. Buckhurst.


Morning. We've got a drive on today to try and get payment on one or two of these long outstanding accounts.


Yes, I noticed yesterday that there were several bad debts. I thought we only gave credit for thirty days?


Yes, that's correct. It's supposed to mean that payment may be deferred until the end of the month following that in which the goods were delivered. But... er... look at this! This retailer, Bush & Green, has owed us seven hundred pounds for office furniture for over nine months.


How often do you send out the accounts?


At the end of every month. Really we must do something drastic about this lot. There's a great deal of money owing to us on these overdue accounts. We don't want any of them to default. I think I'll get our rep. in the north on to this one. You know Mr. Shuttleworth? That's his area.


I thought there was a rumour that Mr. Shuttleworth was going to a different region?


Yes, he's going to the southwest, but he doesn't know it yet.


About those debts. Can't we put a professional debt-collector on to collect some of them?


Yes, we can. But I'm against doing that until we've done everything we can do ourselves to get the money. To bring in a third party, or to use legal pressure, is a sure way to lose a customer.


I see a couple of rather strong letters have been sent to this firm with no reply. Have they gone bankrupt?


I hope not. Hmm... I'll get Shuttleworth on to that one right away. What time is it? Nine o'clock. He may not have left home yet. I'll ring him at once.

(A week later Mr. Shuttleworth is in London. He goes to see Mr. Buckhurst in his office) 


Come along in, Mr. Shuttleworth. Have you seen Mr. Martin yet?


Yes, I have, Mr. Buckhurst. He's just told me about my new area. He told me to come and see you about the new salary scheme.


Did he explain it to you?


Not really.


Well, as you know, our representatives have up till now been paid a basic salary supplemented by a commission on sales. The new system will be a graded salary based on sales quotas.


What really interests me is whether I shall earn more money or less!


I think you'll find it will work out better. All the districts have been carefully researched and an estimate has been made of the probable volume of sales, and your salary graded accordingly. All you've got to do is to keep up to the quota, or better, surpass it. But in simple terms, it means that you can count on a much higher basic salary.


I see.


We're gradually introducing this system, and we find that the reps. prefer it. What do you feel about going to the southwest?


Oh, I'm very pleased. I think it's about time I had a new area.


You did very well about that matter of the bad debt. We didn't even know that Bush & Green had moved. How did you find out what had happened?


Oh, an amazing bit of luck, really. I made enquiries about Bush & Green in several shops near their old address. There's a café at that address now. I suspected the people who run the café, because they acted strangely when I asked them what they did with any letters that came for Bush & Green. The chap hesitated quite a long time before he said that he sent them all back to the Post Office. I was sure he was lying.


What was the bit of luck?


Well, I thought I'd try one more place, and I got into conversation with the chap who owns the bookshop next door. While I was talking to him I noticed his office door was open, and inside I could see what looked very like one of our filing cabinets. He said he'd bought it in Wilminster; that's a little market town near by. Well, I took the serial number and I telephoned to Mr. Martin. He checked that it was one of the filing cabinets we'd supplied to Bush & Green. Then I got the bookshop owner to give me his receipt. He'd bought the cabinet from a firm who called themselves Windel & Riddel. Windel & Riddel indeed! Huh!!


What did you do next? You realise, of course, that Bush & Green might have sold the cabinet first to this firm?


I didn't think so. I was sure it was the same people operating under a different name.


Did you go and see them?


I certainly did. And I presented our bill to them. They pretended they didn't know anything about it. But then the boss came in, and he recognised me. I'd taken the order from him originally. He went at once to write out the cheque, and he asked me to keep quiet about it. What do you think we ought to do?


Well, we've got our cheque, but there are probably a lot of other people who have been done out of payment in the same way. I think it's our duty to inform the police. And... er... Shuttleworth, we must take more care in the future before we recommend supplying on credit




to send out

To distribute (distribuir, repartir por correo tradicional o email).

to default

To fail to perform a duty or to fail to pay a debt (dejar de cumplir, estar en mora).

to bring in

To introduce: to start working with (incorporar, llamar a alguien como refuerzo).

to go bankrupt

A business, or a person, is said to go bankrupt when it or he cannot continue trading through lack of funds. A firm is declared bankrupt and an official receiver takes charge of any remaining assets. Creditors are sometimes paid a proportion of the money owing to them when the firm's affairs are finally settled (quebrar, caer en quiebra).


A plan of action (plan de acción, proyecto, esquema).

basic salary

Salary without commission; salary without extra payment for special work, overtime, etc. (sueldo o salario básico).


Added as a supplement (complementado, con adicionales).


A prescribed number (cupo; cuota, parte).

to work out

To produce the desired result (resultar satisfactorio, salir bien).

to keep up to (with)

To go forward at an equal pace (mantener el nivel o relación).

to count on

To rely on; to depend on (confiar en).


Sales representatives (vendedores).

to find out

Search or inquire about (averiguar, consultar, investigar).


(informal use) Fellow, man (tipo, hombre, fulano).

to send back

To return (devolver).

to pretend

To make believe with the intent to deceive (fingir, simular).

write out

To make out and issue (cheques, documents, etc) (extender, emitir documentos).

to be done out of

To be cheated; to be deprived of (ser engañado, privado de).


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