Spanish as a language

6 Tips for Giving Positive Feedback to a Colleague at Work

Constructive feedback at work allows us to pursue a given objective.

Feedback at work helps to understand what is done well at work and what can be improved. If the individual in question improves, it will be reflected in the teamwork.

In this form of a conversation between two employees or between manager and employee, they talk about results, which are not always fruitful, how they were achieved and what repercussions they had. Therefore, it is important to focus on speaking positively to trigger an effective result in the person in question.

Remember that the purpose of constructive feedback is for the employee to be motivated and achieve better work results. Giving feedback is not an easy task, especially because it requires great communication skills on the part of the person in charge of conveying the message.

Today, iScribo shows you what are the best responses to employees in a company.

What is Feedback Useful for?

Giving positive feedback to a colleague is very useful:

– It allows you to improve behaviours.

– It recognizes the employee’s effort and commitment.

– You evaluate the employee’s performance.

– You learn the appraisal from other colleagues.

– You look for solutions for the proposed measures.

– You resolve possible labour conflicts.

– The one we like the most: it can lead to a salary increase.

How to Give a Constructive Feedback

1. Define the objectives:

We start from the assumption that the employee is going to face their appraisal, but we have already learned in the previous section that this does not have to be negative feedback.

Define specific, achievable and result-oriented goals for a specific period of time. They also need to be specific to the job itself so that they are realistic.

2. Plan the meeting in person:

It’s all about making the employee feel valued, so give them the time they deserve. After all, you are investing in the future of the company and its position. Feeling appreciated and valued improves motivation and therefore performance.

Another advantage is that by being face-to-face, the employee can see the body language in the meeting and you can witness their reactions first-hand. This avoids confusion and misunderstandings in most cases.

3. Give examples, always

It is very important to let the employee know with examples what they are doing well and what needs to be improved. Assertive and direct communication is much more effective and makes the employee adopt a receptive attitude. This will make them react positively and stimulate their motivation.

4. Use the “sandwich technique

The importance of assertiveness is underestimated. The message will always be the same, the impact of the message will vary depending on how you deliver it.

This technique tries to ensure that negative criticism is not perceived as such, but as an opportunity to see the things you do well and the ability to improve. It consists of giving sincere praise, followed by negative criticism and ending with a positive proposal.

5. Make feedback an ongoing process

Employees need to feel that they are constantly valued and evaluated so that talent management is progressive and systematic. Visual support always helps the message and progress to sink in more quickly and effectively with employees.

6. Emphasise the employee’s strengths

It doesn’t help to know that you make the same mistakes over and over again, but it does produce a positive result to remind the employee of the skills they are best at. Think of it as a learning plan with improvement as a result.

If the employee does some things wrong, you can offer support through training or with the help of other colleagues.

Honesty in the Team

Honesty and real facts help the most as a method of giving feedback about a colleague. Everyone needs a pat on the back from time to time to improve motivation and performance at work.

At iScribo we believe in good work practices, so having top-notch communication is essential in a good work environment. With our spelling and grammar checker you can learn many aspects of Spanish while improving your writing. Visit our website and find out how to use our tool.

Writing in Spanish

10 Homonym Words in Spanish for Every Now & Then

Homonyms in Spanish language are words that are pronounced the same or in a very similar way but are spelled differently.

They are divided into homophones, which are those that are pronounced the same but their spelling and meaning are different, and homographs, which are spelled and pronounced the same but their meaning is different. Here are some Spanish homonyms and examples to help you understand them.

5 Homophone Words

1. Astaand hasta

Asta is a noun and means “horn”, like that of the bull, and it can be as well the “mast” of the flags.

Ese toro tiene un asta muy afilada, el ganadero debe tener cuidado. (That bull has a very sharp horn, the rancher should be careful.)

La bandera está a media asta en señal de duelo. (The flag is at half-mast as a sign of mourning.)

Hasta, is a preposition and indicates the final limit of a trajectory in time and space.

Hoy trabajaré hasta que me canse. (Today I will work until I feel tired.)

2. Bello and vello

The first word is an adjective and indicates that something is beautiful or pretty:

Qué bello el final de la película. (How beautiful the end of the film.)

The second word is a noun synonymous with short, soft hair on the human body or on fruit:

El melocotón me da dentera por su vello. (The peach gives me chills because of its fuzz.)

3. Hora and ora

Hora is a noun used as a measure of time, although it has several meanings:

Sesenta minutos hacen una hora. (Sixty minutes make an hour.)

Ora is distributive conjunction meaning “now” and is also a conjugation of the verb “orar”:

Ora ríe, ora llora. (Now they laugh, now they cry.)

Ora, que estamos en misa. (Pray, so we are at Mass.)

4. Naval and nabal

Naval is an adjective relating to navigation and nabal is another adjective pertaining or relating to turnips:

La flota naval está expuesta en el puerto. (The fleet is on display in the harbour.)

El campo nabal está listo para la recolección. (The nabal field is ready for harvesting.)

5. Sabia and savia

Sabia is an adjective indicating “wisdom” and savia is a noun meaning the liquid of plants.

Jaime es una persona muy sabia. (Jaime is a very wise person.)

El árbol tiene un corte y se le ve la savia. (The tree has a cut and you can see the sap.)

5 Homograph Words

6. Amo

It can be the first person of the verb “amar” or the noun synonymous with “owner”:

Te amo más que a mí misma. (I love you more than I love myself.)

El amo de ese perro debe estar cerca. (The owner of that dog must be nearby.)

7. Clavo

In both cases it is a noun, one is a piece of metal and the other is a cooking spice:

Dame el clavo que cuelgue el cuadro. (Give me the nail so I can hung the picture.)

A esta carne le pega el sabor del clavo. (This meat should be flavoured with cloves.)

8. Gato

Defines two completely different nouns. One is the animal and the other is the mechanical tool.

El gato de Marina es siamés. (Marina’s cat is a Siamese.)

Para cambiar la rueda necesitas un gato. (To change the wheel you need a jack.)

9. Pasta

Two different nouns to express food or as a colloquial synonym for “money”:

Hoy comemos pasta con pesto. (Today we are eating pasta with pesto.)

No tengo pasta para pagar el cine. (I don’t have money to pay for the movies.)

10. Vino

Can be the noun defining the alcoholic beverage made from grapes or the verb “venir” conjugated:

Me encanta el vino tinto. (I love red wine.)

Marta vino a jugar al tenis. (Marta came to play tennis.)

Practise with iScribo

With our spelling and grammar checker you can learn many aspects of the Spanish language while improving your writing for work or personal reasons. Visit our website and find out how to use our tool.

Culture around Spanish language

The Importance of the Olive Tree History in Spain

Tell a Spanish that you are going to dress their salad with something other than authentic Spanish olive oil. The situation will probably end in a fierce argument. For the Unesco-endorsed World Olive Day on 26 November, iScribo teaches you some interesting facts about this tree, as well as the importance of olive oil in Spanish culture.

The cultivation of the olive tree has been rooted throughout the Mediterranean for centuries. The climate and terrain of the Mediterranean geography have made it grow in a healthy and fruitful way. There is evidence of the existence of olive tree varieties as far back as 12,000 BC. Its origin is marked by Greek mythology through a Greek legend.

Do you know where the word olivo comes from, and do you know how to form words from its root? Discover some linguistic and grammatical facts in this article and impress your friends with this symbol that Spaniards use and consume with pride.

Jaen, Land of Olive Oil

Spain is the country with the most olive trees in the world. It is normal that in Spain they feel immense pride when talking about their tree, even more so in the south.

Jaen, a province located in Andalusia, is home to the largest number of olive trees in the country. In total, this province yields 586,000 hectares to more than 70 million olive trees, which represents 78% of the province’s agricultural area and 20% of the world’s olive oil production. Such is the euphoria that it is marketed under the name AOVE, extra virgin olive oil.

As if this were not enough, Jaen offers olive oil tastings in almost all its municipalities. Come along, you won’t regret it!

Olive oil is the basic ingredient of the well-known Mediterranean diet, with numerous properties that benefit your health. What’s more, its flavour is unmistakable and adds a taste to food that will make you smile.

Etymology and Curiosities

To understand the history of a word we must look at its etymology. As in all Romance languages, the influence of Latin is more than frequent in Spanish vocabulary. We also have Arabic influence, so many other words derive from this language.

Our star product could not have a longer history, as its etymology comes from both Latin and Arabic, depending on where we are.

If we go to the north of the Iberian Peninsula, we are talking about “olivo” and “oliva”, which come from the Latin olea, which in turn comes from the Greek eala.

On the other hand, the Arabic word for the tree is zaitum, which comes from zait, a common root in Semitic languages. In the southern part of the Iberian Peninsula, of course, the word aceituna is used because of the Arabic influence of the word zaytunah.

Lexical Family of Aceite and Olivo

The lexical family of a word is formed by adding prefixes or suffixes to its root or lexeme. From aceite, we find words such as:

Aceitoso: something that has a lot of oil in it.

Aceitera: small container with oil, for example for salads.

Ajoaceite: a sauce based on garlic and olive oil, which in turn is synonymous with alioli.

As for the olivo, we have derived words such as:

Olivete: small olive tree.

Olivillo: the same as the previous one, it is a diminutive of olive tree.

Olivar: field with many olive trees.

Olivera: synonym of olive.

There are also proper names derived from the olive tree:

Oliver: is a masculine name meaning “blessed by the olive tree”.

Olivia: is a feminine name that literally means “olive”, as a symbol of peace. Pretty, isn’t it?

Immerse Yourself in the Culture

Olive oil has been known since ancient times as “liquid gold” because of the benefits of the olive oil and its immense and incomparable attributes. Also, depending on the type of olive, the colour will be more yellowish, almost golden, another reason for the name.

At iScribo we not only take care of the language, but we also make sure that you learn about the culture that revolves around all Spanish-speaking countries so that you increase your love for this language, just like us.

With our spelling and grammar checker, you can practice the use of synonyms and lexical families in real-time. Remember that knowledge is a gift and writing well provides you with countless employment benefits.

IA and iScribo

Can Humans be Replaced by Machines at Workplace?

While it is true that more and more machines and robots are replacing humans in the workplace, we also must consider that advances in technology are improving the conditions and quality of work.

We hear more and more that machines have replaced humans in the workplace and that jobs that were once for people are now for machines. However, few people see that the creation of new jobs resulting from artificial intelligence is increasing and outweighs the number of jobs being lost.

Even if you are still wary about machines and artificial intelligence, today we are going to try to show you some of the benefits they have for you.

iScribo explains how artificial intelligence influences our daily lives and how we can adapt to make the most of it.

Emerging Jobs

Thanks to the development of artificial intelligence, professions that previously did not exist or were not known for their limited role in society have started to become popular in recent decades. These include jobs in robotics engineering, computer software development, such as iScribo’s orthographic and grammar checker, data analysis, and digital transformation specialists.

Many people will argue that we are not all interested in this field or that we are not “good for it” but think about it for a moment – pharmaceutical laboratories exist and not all the people who work in them are biologists, microbiologists or doctors. There are departments that are essential for the development of their activity, such as administration, finance, sales, logistics, reception and cleaning staff and others.

Machines or People?

Machines help us to automate processes and minimise the margin of error, as well as increase organisation, but this does not mean that they can replace human labour.

Take supermarket checkouts as an example. I’m sure you’ve used them, haven’t you? I’m sure at some point in your life you vowed never to use them. That’s OK! We all adapt to the times, don’t feel guilty. Well, these cash registers are replacing the real cashiers, but not completely. There is always one or two people to assist when the machine needs help, such as for alcohol sales to check the customer’s age, or to fix mistakes in item names or if the customer makes a mistake and swipes the same item twice through the barcode reader.

By using the automated checkout, we increase the rate of sales because we generate less queuing, which increases the number of staff working to sell inside or replenish the shelves, for example.

Machines help us to manage processes, but humans provide the knowledge to create these processes. In turn, it is people who make the decisions that ensure that organisations function.

The Costs of Robotics

Another reason to not panic is to think about the costs generated by machines. Many activities performed by intelligent machines are not profitable for companies. One example is the amount of energy some machines need to work and the scarcity of resources we face today.

The cost of technological equipment is not cheap either. Moreover, in most cases, the space needed for machines is infinitely larger than the space needed to locate people, so logistical problems remain a challenge for robotics.

Besides, for a robot to replace a human being, it would have to be able to do many things at once, not just one. Have you ever seen the famous automatic supermarket checkout driving a motorbike? I hope that if the answer is yes, you have a way to prove it!

Collaboration is the Key

The ideal way to contribute to the progress and improve the quality of life at work is to combine human power with artificial intelligence. This is the only way to get the most out of the tasks at hand.

iScribo is a spelling and grammar checker that works thanks to an engine driven by artificial intelligence and a team of linguists, computer scientists and engineers who teach it. Without the teaching of grammatical rules by the team of linguists and the rules and learning patterns of our IT and engineering departments, iScribo would be neither accurate nor fast. Can you imagine sending a document and having it corrected in a couple of days?

Try our tool and discover the magic of combining human talent with artificial intelligence.

Spanish as a language

20 Spanish Suffixes To Sound Like a True Native Speaker

What are suffixes in Spanish? You might be wondering… Well, they are grammatical elements that are added to the end of the lexical root of a word to form a derivative. Thanks to suffixes we can create word families, for example, from an adjective to a noun (felizfelicidad), from a verb to a noun (crearcreación).

Suffixes also help us to express feelings and emotions of all kinds, for example: ¡Qué bonico!

They usually come from Latin and Greek.

There are different types of suffixes in Spanish, as many as there are cities, as their use has a marked geographical tendency. Learn today the types of appreciative suffixes with iScribo.

Augmentative Suffixes in Spanish

They are part of the appreciative suffixes and are used to indicate greater size:

1. -ón/a: cabezona, moratón (big head, big bruise)

2. -ote/a: gordote, altota (very fat, very tall)

3. -azo/a: ojazos, montonazo, tenaza (big eyes, many things, big tongs)

4. -arrón/a: nubarrón, mozarrona (storm cloud, big woman -colloquial-)

5. -ullón/a: grandullón, grandullona (big man, big woman)

Diminutive Suffixes in Spanish

They indicate a smaller size or less affection:

6. -ajo: pequeñajo, boscajo (little one, grove)

7.  -ecito/a: pececito, florecita (little fish, little flower)

8. -illo/a: tonelillo, mariposilla (little cask, little butterfly)

9. -ico/a: bonico, casica (handsome, cosy house)

10. -zuelo/a: cazuela, pozuelo (casserole, bowl)

Derogatory Suffixes in Spanish

They add negative or contemptuous connotations:

11. -acho: poblacho, hilacho (ugly village, loose thread)

12. -ato/a: niñata, cegato (rude girl, sightless)

13. ucho/a: delgaducho, casucha (scrag, unwelcoming house)

14. uzo/a: gentuza, merluzo (bad people, silly person)

15. -aco/a: pajarraco, berraca (big ugly bird, upset person)

Other Types of Suffixes in Spanish

We have the inflectional suffixes, which indicate grammatical inflections:

16. -o/a: maestro, maestra (indicates gender – ‘teacher’)

17. -ndo: cantar and cantando, coser and cosiendo (indicates gerund mood from the infinitive form – ‘sing’ and ‘singing’, ‘sew’ and ‘sewing’)

There are also derivational suffixes, which we can use to form word families:

18. -ísimo/a: rápido and rapidísimo, contenta and contentísima (adjectives that come from other adjectives – ‘fast’ and ‘very fast’, ‘happy’ and ‘very happy’)

19. -ente: dormir and durmiente, vivir and viviente (adjectives that come from verbs – ‘sleep’ and ‘sleepy’, ‘live’ and ‘living’)

20. -ría: tonto and tontería (nouns that come from adjectives – ‘silly’ and ‘nonsense’)

Search for Words and ACTION!

Suffixes follow the rules of coherence. Bear in mind that a person from Extremadura will say ¡qué pequeñino! (how little!) and a person from Andalusia will say ¡qué pequeñito!

Both people are expressing the same thing but with the most frequent suffixes of their land. Imagine if we include the rest of the Spanish-speaking countries.

Don’t be discouraged by the formation of suffixes, yes, we know there are a lot of them, but they are also the most flexible grammatical part of Spanish. Remember that diversity is richness.

You can practice the suffixes with iScribo’s orthographic and grammar checker to learn new possibilities and correct the ones you are using incorrectly. Check it out with our artificial intelligence-based tool.

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