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Business Word/Phrase of the Day

word-phrase-descEvery day we publish a business word or phrase together with audio pronunciation, phonetics, definition and example sentences. This is a great way to improve your workplace vocabulary as well as your pronunciation. To receive 'Business Word/Phrase of the Day' by email, just subscribe to our newsletter from the link above. 


08 May 2024


  • If you cut your losses, you stop wasting time or money on something, so you will not lose any more time or money.
Example Sentences: After spending weeks on the project and seeing no profit, the director decided to cut the company's losses and end the project.
The new restaurant already had a bad reputation so the owners cut their losses and closed it down.


07 May 2024


  • If you give something or someone the green light, you give your permission to start something.
Example Sentences:We were all prepared to start the project. We were just waiting for the director to give us the green light.
On Tuesday, all of the new employees will be given the green light and the store will officially open for business.


06 May 2024


  • If something sells like hotcakes, it sells very quickly in large numbers.
Example Sentences: When the new iPod came out, it sold like hotcakes.
All the manufacturer did was add a new keyboard and the product sold like hotcakes.


05 May 2024


  • To gain ground is to begin to see a profit, or to start to do better at something.
Example Sentences: Our stock was dropping for weeks but now it is gaining ground.
If the store sells off all of its old merchandise, it might gain some ground in three months.

TO CUT CORNERS /tu; kʌt kɔrnərs/

04 May 2024


  • To cut corners is to use faster and easier methods in return for lower quality products.
Example Sentences: My office decided that all employees should stop cutting corners, so now we must create all of our own documents.
The engineers had cut too many corners when they started saying paper was a good material for building commercial airlines.


04 May 2024


  • Course has many meanings, but the most common meaning is a set of classes or a plan of study on a particular subject, usually resulting in an exam or qualification.
Example Sentences: Tim did a three-year course in linguistics at London University.
They're going away on a training course next week.

TO CLOSE A DEAL /tu; kloʊz eɪ dil/

03 May 2024


  • If you close a deal, you make a successful business arrangement with someone.
Example Sentences:We closed a deal with a major supermarket to supply them with Australian oranges.
I must close a few deals today; otherwise, I'm hardly going to make any commission this month.

TO BREAK EVEN /tu; breɪk ivən/

02 May 2024


  • If you break even, you have neither made a profit nor lost money.
Example Sentences: In his first year in business, although he had made many contacts, he still only broke even.
Our restaurant was lucky because it did not fail; however, next year we are hoping to do more than break even.


01 May 2024


  • To get something off the ground is to actually start something that has been planned.
Example Sentences: We have the plans to build this. Now, what do we have to do to get this off the ground?
Let's see if we can finally get this merger off the ground!

TO TAKE A CALCULATED RISK /tu; teɪk eɪ kælkyəˌleɪtɪd rɪsk/

30 Apr 2024


  • If you take a calculated risk, you take a chance, but you know exactly what will happen if you fail.
Example Sentences: Yes, it is possible we may lose this deal, but it is a calculated risk we are willing to take.
Mr. Gardner knows we're taking a calculated risk in this case, but he believes the rewards are too good to not take it.

TO MAKE A COLD CALL /tu; meɪk eɪ koʊld kɔl/

29 Apr 2024


  • To make a cold call is to make a sales call to a stranger.
Example Sentences: If you become an employee with our company, you will start in the sales department making cold calls.
The salesman looked in the phone book, started with A and just made cold calls all week until he got to the letter Z.

A KICKBACK /eɪ kɪkˌbæk/

28 Apr 2024


  • A kickback is the money given to a person in a position of power as a payment for making something possible.
Example Sentences: Mr. Washburn might go to jail as the police believe he was taking kickbacks.
The company made the building with poor materials because two of its managers were taking kickbacks.

A COMPANY MAN /eɪ kʌmpəni mæn/

27 Apr 2024


  • A company man is an employee more loyal to the company than to other employees.
Example Sentences: It is unlikely Mr. Ross will let us leave early to lunch today. He is a company man.
Clean your desk! A company man is coming today for a surprise inspection.

IN SHORT SUPPLY /in ʃɔrt səˈplaɪ/

26 Apr 2024


  • If something is in short supply, then there is not very much of it available.
Example Sentences:Qualified persons are in short supply for this position.
As we are in short supply of pens, will somebody please go and order some more?

ACROSS THE BOARD /əˈkrɔs ðə bɔrd/

25 Apr 2024


  • If something is across the board, then everything or everyone is included in it.
Example Sentences:The director made an across the board decision to hire new managers.
We heard that when Mr. Jones returns, he will give salary increases across the board.