Friday, April 4, 2008

Hallo Zusammen

literally translated hallo zusammen means hello together. In the northern states one might say hi everyone. In the south one might perhaps say hi ya'll.

I learned this valuable phrase on my first day in the office here in Germany. Me and another new colleague were taken around the office by the H.R. representative. We walked into a room there were several people in the room. She said simply: hi everyone (hallo zusammen).

I was thinking, what a practical phrase and making a mental note to myself to remember it, but was also a bit shocked, because bothering an entire room of workers might be deemed disruptive in the U.S.

I have since come to find out that it is normal and expected for a person entering a room to greet those already in the room. This makes the phrase even more practical than I first thought: Hallo zusammen, or Tschüß zusammen (goodbye everyone) can be used for groups. One can commonly say Guten Morgen (good morning) when entering the office in the morning.


christina said...

Yeah, "Hallo zusammen" is WAY easier than greeting every single person in the room personally, as is done in some companies. Germans will also often knock on a table instead of shaking 25 hands, coming or going.

Gardner said...

huh, knocking on the table, that's cool. I had heard about that as a form of clapping in school for instance. I didn't know about the greeting option.

J said...

I also found the 'announce yourself' thing a bit odd when I first moved here.

Gardner said...

Yea, every now and then I still walk in to a room, sit down, and wonder why it's so silent, moments later, I realize it's because I was supposed to greet them. Definitely backwards from the U.S. culture. Not for good or bad, just 180° different.

Lynda said...

Yep I use it too - very handy little catch phrase. Over the years I have found there are many times when the Germans have a perfect word that we dont have in English... I also use 'Guten Tag zusammen' when I pass people walking on the street... it seems friendly...maybe they think I am nuts! LOL

March 2007