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15 Top Business English Idioms

15 Top Business English Idioms

15 Top Business English Idioms

Are you up to speed with the latest business English idioms? Here are some of the top English idioms that you could use in a business context. How many of them do you know?

Let’s get the ball rolling!


More English idioms – 15 Fantastically Fishy English Idioms!


1. To get something off the ground = To begin or launch something

To get something off the ground = To begin or launch something

  • I can’t wait to get this project off the ground!
  • I can’t wait to begin this project!

2. To get the ball rolling = To start, e.g. a meeting or debate

To get the ball rolling = To start, e.g. a meeting or debate

  • Let’s get the ball rolling.
  • Let’s start.

3. To think outside the box = To think in an original or left-field / lateral way

To think outside the box = To think in an original or left-field / lateral way

  • Try to think outside the box.
  • Try to think in an original or unique way.

4. In a nutshell = In short

In a nutshell = In short

  • In a nutshell, I just don’t feel that Martin is right for the position.
  • In short, I just don’t feel that Martin is right for the position.

5. ASAP = As soon as possible (acronym)

ASAP = As soon as possible (acronym)

  • I need that report ASAP!
  • I need that report as soon as possible.

6. To stand your ground = To have complete confidence in your position or idea

To stand your ground = To have complete confidence in your position or idea

  • If we stand our ground, they will sign the contract!
  • If we stick to our position, they will sign the contract!

7. The bottom line = The most important thing / the main priority

The bottom line = The most important thing / the main priority

  • ‘What’s the bottom line?’ ‘We must send the orders today!’
  • ‘What’s the most important thing?’ ‘We must send the orders today!’

8. The elephant in the room = The uncomfortable truth that nobody wants to acknowledge

The elephant in the room = The uncomfortable truth that nobody wants to acknowledge

  • The elephant in the room is that we know their sales forecasts!
  • The thing that nobody wants to mention is that we know their sales forecasts!

9. To corner the market = To become the leading seller of a product

To corner the market = To become the leading seller of a product

  • Since 2012 we have been able to corner the market in toothbrush holders.
  • Since 2012 we have been able to become the leading seller of toothbrush holders.

10. To climb the corporate ladder = To be focused on gaining promotion within a company

To climb the corporate ladder = To be focused on gaining promotion within a company

  • John only cares about climbing the corporate ladder.
  • John only cares about trying to get promoted.

11. To hit the glass ceiling = To reach an artificial  limit of promotion, usually due to race, or gender

To hit the glass ceiling = To reach an artificial limit of promotion, usually due to race, or gender

  • Alison feels she has hit the glass ceiling at work.
  • Alison feels she can’t be promoted at work any further, because she is a woman.

12. To be in the red = To be in debt / To be in the black = To be in profit or solvent

To be in the red = To be in debt / To be in the black = To be in profit or solvent

  • No, the company is still in the red, but it could be in the black next month.
  • No, the company is still in debt, but it could be in profit next month.

13. To get the sack = To lose your job

To get the sack = To lose your job

  • Billy got the sack yesterday.
  • Billy lost his job yesterday.

14. To throw in the towel = To quit

To throw in the towel = To quit

  • I’m just about ready to throw in the towel!
  • I’m just about ready to quit!

15. To go / get back to the drawing board = To start again

To go / get back to the drawing board = To start again

  • OK, let’s go back to the drawing board.
  • OK, let’s start again.

 

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ESOL Discussion Questions about Cars

ESOL Discussion Questions about Cars

ESOL Discussion Questions about Cars

1. Do you drive? What kind of car do you drive? How often do you drive?

2. How did you learn to drive? How many lessons did you have? What was the name of your teacher? Describe them. Did anything funny, or dangerous, happen to you while you were learning to drive?

3. Have you ever suffered from road rage? Do any of your friends or family suffer from it? What do you / they do? How do you feel about it? How can we avoid road rage? What kind of road users do you dislike? Why?

4. How well do you know the Highway Code, or the rules of the road in your country? Tell me… a) three things that you must do whilst driving, b) three things that you mustn’t do whilst driving, c) describe three different road signs, and tell me what they mean.

5. Describe your car (or a friend’s car) inside and out. Tell me your history with it. Where did you get it from? Why did you buy it? How many miles/km have you done in it? What is the furthest you have travelled in it? Imagine that you wanted to sell it. How would you advertise it?

6. What other vehicles can you drive? What would you like to learn to drive?

7. Do you wear a seatbelt? Why? / Why not? Is it compulsory in your country?

8. What is the future for drivers? Will we all still be driving cars in 30 years’ time? Will we still be using petrol and gas? If not, how will we get around?

9. Extra time: label the parts of a car:

Label the parts of a car

ESOL Discussion Questions about Cars

ESOL Discussion Questions about Cars

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Practice Conditionals (PDF)! If… Promises of God

Practice Conditionals (PDF)! If… Promises of God

Practice Conditionals (PDF)! If… Promises of God

Learn English through Bible study and brush up your knowledge of conditionals with this FREE printable worksheet that focuses on the promises of God.

This worksheet is free and in the public domain, so please feel free to share it widely!

Direct download: https://purlandtraining.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/12/Q-if-promises-of-god.pdf

Practice Conditionals (PDF)! If… Promises of God

Answers:

Practice Passive Voice with the Story of Abraham and Isaac from Genesis

Practice Passive Voice with the Story of Abraham and Isaac from Genesis

Practice Passive Voice with the Story of Abraham and Isaac from Genesis

a) Read the story of Abraham and Isaac in Genesis 22:1-18.

b) Write each active sentence in passive voice (BE in the given tense + past participle).

In passive voice, the order of the subject and object is reversed, e.g.

Note: some of the sentences below cannot be changed, because the main verb is intransitive,
which means that there is no direct object following it.

This free worksheet is in the Public Domain, so please feel free to share it widely!

Direct download: https://purlandtraining.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/12/Q-abraham-and-isaac-passive-voice.pdf

Practice Passive Voice with the Story of Abraham and Isaac from Genesis

Answers:

Practice Passive Voice with the Story of Abraham and Isaac from Genesis

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Reading Comprehension – How Much Money Do They Have?

Reading Comprehension – How Much Money Do They Have?

Reading Comprehension – How Much Money Do They Have?

Use only the following information to find the answers:

Tim has £3.47.
He gives £2 to
John, who already had £10.75.
Tim’s sister,
Clare, takes £20 out of the bank and gives half to Lisa.
Lisa spends £4.99 on a t-shirt and gives the rest back to Clare, who then lends £2.50
to
Jalal.
Jalal owes a pound to
his brother, so he gives him three quarters of that.
John gives £5.58 to
Keith, who needs it because he owes a fiver to Kathy.
She puts it with the 68p that she already has in her pocket, then withdraws £60 from
a cashpoint and gives a quarter of that to
Laurie, who spends a third and shares the
rest equally between her cousins, Jalal and
Ruby.

How much money does each person have now?

1. Tim has ________________________________________
2. John has ________________________________________
3. Clare has ________________________________________
4. Lisa has ________________________________________
5. Jalal has ________________________________________
6. Jalal’s brother has ________________________________________
7. Keith has ________________________________________
8. Kathy has ________________________________________
9. Laurie has ________________________________________
10. Ruby has ________________________________________

Answers:

1. Tim has £1.47. 2. John has £7.17. 3. Clare has £12.51. 4. Lisa doesn’t have any
money. 5. Jalal has £6.75. 6. Jalal’s brother has 75p. 7. Keith has 58p. 8. Kathy has
£50.68. 9. Laurie doesn’t have any money. 10. Ruby has £5.

Get this and more great printable worksheets in the FREE Big Activity Book – download it here!

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Practice English Prepositions: Jesus Walks on the Water

Practice English Prepositions: Jesus Walks on the Water

Practise English Prepositions: Jesus Walks on the Water

Read the account of Jesus walking on the water from Matthew 14:22-33. Choose the best preposition, or if you think that none of the options are correct, write your own preposition in the gap.

Direct download: https://purlandtraining.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/Q-jesus-walks-on-the-water.pdf

Practise English Prepositions: Jesus Walks on the Water

Answers:

  1. into
  2. Answer not given. Correct answer: of
  3. up
  4. to
  5. Answer not given. Correct answer: in
  6. Answer not given. Correct answer: by
  7. of
  8. on
  9. Answer not given. Correct answer: out
  10. to
  11. Answer not given. Correct answer: down
  12. to
  13. Answer not given. Correct answer: out
  14. of
  15. Answer not given. Correct answer: into

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15 Fantastically Fishy English Idioms!

15 Fantastically Fishy English Idioms!

Do you like fish? Do you like English idioms? Yes? Then you’re going to love this fun fishy feature, which focuses on fifteen fab English idioms about our fantastic fishy friends!

  1. He’s a big fish in a small pond. = He has power and influence, but only in a limited area.

He's a big fish in a small pond.

2. He’s a cold fish. = He’s an unemotional person.

He's a cold fish.

3. I think she was fishing for a compliment. = I think she was trying to get a compliment.

I think she was fishing for a compliment.

4. It’s like shooting fish in a barrel. = It’s very easy.

It's like shooting fish in a barrel.

5. Hmm, something smells fishy. = Something seems suspicious.

Hmm, something smells fishy.

6. I’ve got bigger fish to fry. = I’ve got more important things to do.

I've got bigger fish to fry.

7. Her dad drinks like a fish. = Her dad drinks a lot [of alcohol].

Her dad drinks like a fish.

8. I felt a bit green around the gills. = I felt sick.

I felt a bit green around the gills.

9. They fell for that joke hook, line, and sinker! = They fell for that joke – completely.

They fell for that joke hook, line, and sinker!

10. That’s a different kettle of fish. = That’s a different matter.

That's a different kettle of fish.

11. There are plenty more fish in the sea. = You will find another person to love.

There are plenty more fish in the sea.

12. Your grandma is an odd fish, isn’t she? = Your grandma is strange, isn’t she?

Your grandma is an odd fish, isn't she?

13. What’s that got to do with the price of fish? = What’s that got to do with anything?

What's that got to do with the price of fish?

14. The train was so busy! We were packed in like sardines! = The train was so busy! The passengers had to stand very close together.

The train was so busy! We were packed in like sardines!

15. I felt like a fish out of water. = I felt uncomfortable and out of place.

I felt like a fish out of water.

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FREE Discussion Worksheet: Proverbs – Advice for Life 1

FREE Discussion Worksheet: Proverbs – Advice for Life 1

Have you got a problem? Something weighing you down? Have you tried looking in the book of Proverbs in the Bible for an answer?

Read the different problems below and match each one to advice given in a verse from Proverbs. Check any new vocabulary. Write out each verse in your notebook, then discuss each situation with a partner or small group. What would you do in each situation? How helpful do you think the advice from Proverbs would be today?

Direct download: https://purlandtraining.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/Q-proverbs-advice-for-life-1.pdf

FREE Discussion Worksheet: Proverbs – Advice for Life 1

Answers:

1. Proverbs 27:1
2. Proverbs 10:9
3. Proverbs 16:18
4. Proverbs 15:16
5. Proverbs 31:30
6. Proverbs 16:3
7. Proverbs 10:12
8. Proverbs 22:6
9. Proverbs 12:11
10. Proverbs 15:1

Image: Joseph Chan