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Grammar and Idioms For Young People

Idioms for Business: Be Fluent in English

Listen to these idioms in use: watch a video and read a conversation.

These are American English idioms that work well in business-related moments or in a company setting. There is no reason to use them exclusively for business--you can use them any time. They're about business-related moments, business socializing, study, success, failure and money.

Learn the Idioms
make a bundle: make a lot of money

need a crash course: need to learn very quicky, often to meet a deadline (also take a crash course)

on the other hand: an opposite way to think about something or perceive something

not set in stone: not finalized, able to be changed

make the rounds: at a social event, to talk to everyone or most people

take all the credit: take or claim the recognition for something

cutting it close: doing something risky or last minute (as if you were cutting vegetables and the knife is too close to your finger)

get a reality check: realize how something really is (as opposed to how you might imagine it)

give a rain check: change a meeting to another day, though the new day will be chosen later (often asked, "can I give you a raincheck?")

take a rain check: accept changing a meeting to another day, the new day to be chosen later

In Use:

My friend is making a bundle with her new business.

His brother made a bundle at that company, but then he was laid off.

We're buying a house. I need a crash course in home loans and property values.

She wants to apply for that job, but to get it, she may have to take a crash course in accounting.

I did not want to stay home because of the snow storm. On the other hand, I did need to clean house and finish some indoor projects.

We have plans for the ad campaign, but they're not set in stone. Do you have a new idea?

Before dinner, I want to introduce you to everyone. Let's make the rounds and then choose our table.

He took all the credit for the project--even though he was one of eight people working on it.

We'll be cutting it close if we plan to finish by December 23rd. A more realistic end-date is the 27th.

He spent $1,000 setting up his home-based business. Then he got a reality check--he had no customers for the first 2 months.

My daughter is sick and I have to pick her up from school. I can't do lunch now. Can I give you a rain check?

I'm very sorry, but I can't make it to your office this afternoon. Will you take a rain check?


More Idioms
for the record: a very neutral way of stating an opinion (personal emotion/intent to act are not being expressed)

FYI: pronounce "F-Y-I," acronym for "for your information,"  a neutral way of delivering information (again avoids opinion)

(to have/to get) ducks in a row: having/getting things in order (from the fly-formation of ducks)

come under fire: getting public criticism (getting shot at with criticism)

(my/your/his/her) hands are tied: a person can do nothing

in the pink: having a lot of money (probably originates from 15th century when pink represented perfection)

get a pink slip: get laid off (originates from use of carbon copies)

go bust: to lose all your money

handful of players: a few who are competing in an industry

crunch the numbers: do the accounting or financial calculations

In Use:

You're 48 years old? For the record, you look like you're 35.

I heard about the sales plan. For the record, I don't think our sales will go up with this approach.

I emailed everyone on the team. FYI, Jim has a two week vacation that starts next week.

I think it's most important that we have our ducks in a row before we launch the new software. We need to know exactly how things will work.

The lawyer is getting her ducks in a row before she presents her final statement to the judge.

The company came under fire in 1993. It was accused of tax evasion.

I'm sorry. I'd like to help save your project, but my hands are tied. There's nothing I can do.

He reported that the company is in the pink. We're doing great!

They met with me behind closed. I knew I was getting a pink slip.

I think our company is about to go bust. We need some major budget cuts if we are to survive.

There are only a handful of players in the big business of software right now.

The boss says that our department is spending too much money. We need to crunch the numbers and re-create our budget.

Listen to some of these idioms in use: watch a video and read a conversation.

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