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Business English: Making decisions
Business English: Making decisions

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3.2 Summarising decisions

To make progress in a meeting you need to use language to summarise decisions and check that everyone is in agreement. The following are examples of structures that were used in Activity 14 (see Section 3.1).

Agree + to + verb

Management has agreed to give all staff an extra seven days' leave.

Agree + that + phrase

We agreed that it was best to stop discussing the options.

Decide + to + verb

We decided to produce an information pack.

Take/make a decision + to + verb

Management has made a decision to move to Milton Keynes.

The decision is + to + verb

The decision is to move to Milton Keynes.

Activity 15

Rewrite each sentence using the word(s) in brackets and beginning as shown. You may need to change the form of the word(s) in brackets.


‘The new model will be called “Invicta”.’ (decide)

We decided/have decided to call the new model ‘Invicta’.

  1. ‘OK, we'll install the new computers next week.’ (agree to)

    We ......

  2. ‘The boss is going to apply for the post in Glasgow.’ (decide)

    The boss ......

  3. The company chose to move to Spain. (make/decision)

    The company ......

  4. Do we all accept that EFB is the new name for the company? (agree)

    Do we ......

  5. The Marketing Department thinks £19 is too expensive, too. (agree that)

    The Marketing ......

  6. The directors voted to rename the company. (decision)

    The ......


There is more than one possible answer in some cases.

  1. We agreed/have agreed to install the new computers next week.

  2. The boss decided/has decided to apply for the post in Glasgow.

  3. The company made/has made the decision to move to Spain.

  4. Do we agree that EFB is the new name for the company?

  5. The Marketing Department agrees/agreed/has agreed that £19 is too expensive.

  6. The (directors') decision is to rename the company.

When decisions have been made it is important that people are informed and know what they are expected to do. In the remaining three activities in this section you look at how two different companies move from decision to action.

Activity 16

HR Advantage, a travel agency, is planning its summer publicity campaign. Mary Osborn has missed a planning meeting. Her colleague Mark Boswell rings her to tell her what was decided. Listen to their phone conversation and complete Mary's ‘To do’ list by noting down the two tasks she has been given.

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Extract 18
Interactive feature not available in single page view (see it in standard view).
......30 April
......30 April

Check your answers against this list of action points which was produced after the meeting.

Summer Publicity Campaign – Meeting 23 April

The following is a list of action points agreed at our meeting. There will be a progress meeting on 5 May. Please let me know if you are unable to attend.


Kiran Sanjeevan to write draft press release for summer campaign. By 30 April.

Ashley Joseph to prepare summer press photos. By 15 May.

Mary Osborn to get quotes for advertising from agencies. By 30 April.


Nick Lythe to compile mailing lists. By 30 April.

Mary Osborn to order stationery. By 30 April.

Mark Boswell to supervise mailing. By 15 May.


quote n abbreviation of ‘quotation’; the price that someone says they will charge for a piece of work

compile to collect information and arrange it


Order stationery30 April
Get advertising quotes30 April