The following idioms and expressions are often used in the work setting. 1. across the board: This refers to everything or everyone in the discussion Example: The new project was completed on time across the board.
2. at a loss: In this case, it refers to losing money when selling something Example: Our company sold one of its branches at a loss.
3. ball park figure: This refers to an estimate Example: This is only a ball park figure of what our new building will cost.
4. big cheese: This refers to an important person, leader Example: We had a meeting with the big cheese of the company on Monday.
5. bottom line: This refers to a final figure,a total or a summary Example: The bottom line is that we need to finish this project by Friday.
6. break even: This occurs when an expense is equal to the profits Example: The best we can hope for is that we will break even on these loans.
7. buy out: A buy out refers to buying a business or shares in a business Example: Our company bought out another smaller one last year.
8. carry over: This refers to saving for another time, or making a transfer Example: We can only carry over five sick days a year. (In this case, we refer to carryover as saving for another time) Example: If I carry over my losses to next year, we will do better financially. In this case, we are talking about transferring to another year.
9. close out: This refers to selling all of something Example: Macy’s is having a close out sale of all outerwear in September.
10. come on strong: This refers to harsh or excessively strong language or attitude. This includes being very direct. Example: My manager comes on too strong in meetings, so people don’t like him very much.
11. cut back: This refers to using less of something Example: We will have to cut back on our expenses for the next month.
12. cut one’s losses: This refers to taking action to stop losing something (for example, money) Example: Let’s just cut our losses on that stock.
13. double-check: This refers to checking something twice to confirm it is correct. Example: Always double-check your results to ensure that the data is correct.
14. face value: This is the true worth of something Example: We sold our house at face value.
15. figure out: This refers to solving a problem by working at it Example: We figured out that if we ran the numbers a different way, we got faster results.
16. gain ground: This refers to making progress in an area. Example: We are gaining ground in the area of short-term loans.
17. get off the ground: This refers to having a successful beginning to something that you're working on. Example: Our new project is finally getting off the ground.
18. go public: This refers to selling privately owned stock to the public Example: My company will be going public in January.
19. go through with: This refers to completing something Example: Even though my team doesn’t agree with you, I will go through with your plans.
20. in black and white: This means in writing Example: I’ll believe the numbers when I see them in black and white.
21. in the black: In the black refers to making a profit Example: Our company has been in the black for over a year.
22. in the red: In the red refers to a company losing money Example: This quarter we will be in the red if things don’t improve significantly.
23. in the long run: This refers to the final result Example: In the long run, it will be best to consolidate our loans to minimize our monthly payments.
24. jack up: This means to make higher Example: The bank jacked up their interest rate by 3% this year alone.
25. kickback: This refers to money that is received illegally for favorable treatment Example: The politicians received kickbacks from the lobbyists for voting for the bill.
26. to mean business: This means to be serious Example: He really means business when he says that we need to do a better job.
27. number-cruncher: A number-cruncher is an accountant or one who deals with numbers Example: All of our employees are good number-crunchers.
28. on-hand: This means to be ready, or have something in one’s possession Example: We have 25 books on-hand in our warehouse.
29. pay off: This means to be successful Example: This new project will really pay off when it is implemented.
30. pay off: This means to complete a debt Example: I’ll be able to pay off my car in one more year.
31. run short: This means not enough money Example: I am running a little short on cash this month. Could you give me a loan?
32. saddled with debt: This means to have a lot of debt Example: We give loans to customers who are often saddled with debt.
33. sell like hotcakes: This refers to selling a large quantity of something. Example: The musician’s new CD is selling like hotcakes.
34. strike while the iron is hot: This means to take advantage of an opportunity. Example: If we don’t strike while the iron is hot, we might lose the deal.
35. take a nosedive: This means to fall in value Example: The stock that I bought last year took a bignosedive last month.
36. take on: This means to handle more work or to hire someone new. Example: I always take on more projects when I should shouldn’t.
37. take over: This refers to taking possession of something. Example: We will take over that bank at the beginning of next year.
38. tight spot: This refers to a difficult situation. Example: When you don’t meet your deadline, it puts our whole team in a tight spot.
39. write off: This means to cancel something, such as a debt. Example: I think we can write off this trip as a business expense.
40. to work out: This means to develop or to end successfully Example: I think this will work out very well for our company.
41. in accordance with: This means in agreement with something Example: In accordance with our discussion, I have prepared this document for you.