Have you ever gone to an important business meeting and felt nervous meeting new people? Business introductions can be difficult, but they're essential if you want to make new contacts and further your career.

Here we will introduce you to important phrases that are useful while in formal situations. You'll find out how to greet others, begin conversations while in formal contexts, and more. Check out the tables below and prepare for your next meeting!

Formal Greetings

Here we've collected the most important formal greetings. Use them when you first see somebody and want to be extra polite. Don't forget: it's important to shake hands and make eye contact with somebody when you first meet!
Good morning!
 
Good afternoon!
 
Good evening!
 
Hello, Mr. Smith.
 
What is your name?
 
My name is Robert Jonson.
 
Let me introduce myself.
 
I'd like to introduce my coworker, Gary.
 
It's nice to meet you.
 
How are you doing?
 
 
Good morning!
At the beginning of formal events (e.g. business meetings, interviews, formal dinners, or even class), greetings like Good morning, Good afternoon, and Good evening will be used. In response, you could simply repeat the greeting or say Hello.
Let me introduce myself
This is mostly used in business situations or if you want to, for example, introduce yourself to somebody else at a meeting. After saying Let me introduce myself you then say My name is… For example: Let me introduce myself. My name is Alex Smith.
I'd like to introduce my coworker, Gary
The sentence pattern I'd like to introduce + PERSON. is used when you want to introduce somebody other than yourself. For example: I'd like to introduce Emily. We work in finance together. Alternatively, you could use the sentence pattern: Let me introduce + PERSON to do the same thing. Our example would thus look like this: Let me introduce Emily. There are a couple of things you could say in response. For example you could continue your introduction by saying something more about the person you are introducing: We are working together on a project.
It's nice to meet you
Just like with normal introductions you want to use this phrase after somebody has given you their name. Another way to say this is It's a pleasure to meet you, but you could even say It's an honor to meet you or Pleased to make your acquaintance. In response, simply say any of these phrases back and add too to the end of the phrase: It's nice to meet you too.
How are you doing?
This sentence is usually used after names have been exchanged and before moving on to other conversational topics. In the United Kingdom, people will normally say How do you do? instead. Somebody might answer with something like: Not too bad, and yourself?.

Continuing a Formal Conversation

Don't know what to say after you greet and introduce yourself to someone new? The phrases below will help you start conversations and get to know someone more. Note that conversations in formal contexts are usually about business and careers.
What do you do for work?
 
What company are you working for?
 
What is your specialization?
 
What field do you work in?
 
My specialization is in marketing.
 
I work in the design industry.
 
Do you have a business card?
 
 
What do you do for work?
This is a good question to ask when you want to get to know more about a person in a business setting. Another way to ask the same thing is What do you do?. You could respond many different ways, for example with your job title, field, or position in the company: I am the general manager.
My specialization is in marketing
A specialization refers to something that you are an expert in or to the specific type of work you do. To tell someone what your specialization is, use the sentence pattern My specialization is in + FIELD OF WORK.. Here is another example of how to use this pattern: My specialization is in park management. In response, someone might say something like: How long have you been doing that?. Instead of telling someone your specialization, you could just tell them the field you work in. To do this, use the sentence pattern: I work in + FIELD OF WORK. For example: I work in engineering. Someone might respond with a question like: Do you enjoy your work?.
Do you have a business card?
A business card is something that you can easily take with you into business situations and give to others. It provides things like your contact information, job title, or position in the company. In business contexts it would be useful to get the contact information of others you are talking to or to be able to give your information to them. Another way you could ask for somebody's contact information is to ask How can I get in contact with you? or Can I get your email address?. Somebody might respond with: I do, let me give you one.

Formal Goodbyes

Below you'll find different ways to end a conversation with someone while in a formal situation. Don't forget to shake hands with them again and to exchange contact information. That way you'll be able to stay in touch with each other.
It was a pleasure meeting you.
 
It was nice meeting you.
 
It was nice meeting you too.
 
Let me give you my card.
 
I hope we meet again.
 
I hope to see you again very soon.
 
Take care.
 
 
It was a pleasure meeting you
Another way to say this phrase is to say It was nice meeting you. You could even say It was an honor to meet you, but you might want to save that one for exceptionally formal settings or if you meet your hero someday! Regardless, it's important to say one of these phrases before leaving a formal setting in order to show your appreciation of the other person taking time to get to know you. If somebody says one of these phrases to you, then simply repeat it but add too to the end of the sentence: It was nice meeting you too or It was a pleasure meeting you too.
Let me give you my card
If you have not exchanged business cards or any contact information during your conversation with somebody new, then it's a good idea to say this phrase before you both leave. It's your last chance so you should use it! You could also say Let me give you my email or Let me give you my phone number. Somebody might answer with something like: Thank you, I will give you mine as well.

Answers to the Most Common Questions

What are the most important English phrases that I need to know when giving a formal introduction?
  • Let me introduce myself.
  • It's nice to meet you.
  • What do you do for work?
  • It was a pleasure meeting you.
  • I'd like to introduce my coworker, Gary.
  • Let me introduce Emily.
  • Do you have a business card?
  • Let me give you my card.

Show All Phrases
What is the structure of a formal introduction in English?
When you meet somebody new in a formal setting it is best to first shake their hand and make eye contact while you do this. Then you introduce yourself by giving you name and maybe your field, position in a company, or job title. Afterwards, it's polite to ask for the other person's name and field. Once the conversation comes to an end, you should shake the person's hand again and exchange contact information.
How does formal English differ from informal English?
Compared to other languages, there isn't a huge difference between informal and formal English. The biggest difference that you'll probably notice, is that first names are usually avoided in formal settings. You will want to stick to Mrs. / Mr. + LAST NAME. In formal English, you also want to avoid contractions and shortening phrases. So, for example, instead of saying I'm Sarah. you'd want to say My name is Sarah., or instead of Nice to meet you. you'd say It is nice to meet you.. Formal English is really only used in business settings, like interviews and meetings, and at formal gatherings, like graduation from university, formal dinners, or scholarship events. Some professors in the English-speaking world also prefer to stick to formal English. English speakers are a friendly bunch though, so don't sweat it if you use an informal phrase in a formal setting by accident. We'll understand!
How do I formally introduce somebody else?
Here are the two most common ways to introduce somebody else when in a formal situation:

I'd like to introduce + PERSON.
  • I'd like to introduce my coworker, Gary.
  • I'd like to introduce my head of staff, Alexandra.
  • I'd like to introduce my fiancé, Daniel.

Let me introduce + PERSON.
  • Let me introduce Emily.
  • Let me introduce Mr. Smith.
  • Let me introduce my coworker, Sarah.

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