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Speaking Aussie: A Guide for Non-Speakers

Being a professional in the workplace with Australians, or Aussies, as they’re affectionately known, is an amazing experience. Aussies are some of the nicest, most personable individuals on the planet, and they’re always ready to lend a hand to friends and strangers alike. If you’re going to be working with Aussies, here are some tips to help you with your interactions on a daily basis.

Aussies often like to abbreviate names. My name is Elizabeth, I grew up being called Lizzy, Libby, Liz and Little Libby. This is a fun way that Aussies share their culture with each other and with visitors. It may take you a little while to figure out the abbreviation system, but once you do, you’ll be using it like you were born “down under”.

The Weekend is Crucial

When it comes to having fun while remaining professional, Aussies are top-notch. They like to plan ahead for the weekend, so you’ll want to have a party plan in place by Wednesday. On Monday, you better be ready to talk about what you did over the weekend, and by Friday, get ready to talk all about what you’ll be doing the next weekend.

Make Small Talk, But Have an Elevator Introduction

It’s also important to make small talk around the water cooler. Aussies love getting to know people, and even chatting about the weather is expected in Australian culture. Also, have an elevator introduction ready. This is a 30-second introduction for meeting new people. You’ll want to provide a brief overview of who you are, what you’re all about and what you’re doing in Australia. By offering a quick summary, you’re bound to make friends quickly in the workplace.

Learn Speech Patterns, Dialects and More

If Aussies can shorten a word, they will. There are abbreviations for everything. Below are a few examples to begin your learning. For a full free copy of our A to Z – Aussie English Guide get in contact with us today.

Bangers Sausages – bangers and mash (British)
Barney, big barney Argument, fight – ‘they had a barney last night and he hit him/her’
Barley Charlie That’s not right;  ‘Hey, wait a minute….barley Charlie…!!’  ‘Eh, Barley Charlie, hang on a minute that’s not right (that can’t be right)’;
battlers Hard working people who have just enough money;  Aussie battlers
Bees knees It’s the best – top quality – the best you will find
Beaut /beaudy Great, good, wonderful, OK
Beaudy mate thanks a lot A form of completing a conversation
Beyond the black stump Far away
Back of beyond Far away;  ‘out the back of beyond’
Big bikkies A lot of money
Bikkie Biscuit
Biggie Big problem, big opportunity, important, it’s a biggie