Enrich your English with these commonly used business phrasal verbs list. Learning business phrasal verbs and expressions that commonly used in the business life and workplaces will help you to speak more fluent English. You can also find their meaning and fresh examples and exercises in this lesson.
Common Business Phrasal Verbs
Meaning: to begin to do more different kinds of activities or work
Example: The company specializes in casual clothing but it is branching out into formal wear.
Meaning: Enter (with effort or force)
Example: It’s always been his ambition to break into broadcasting.
Example: He moved to Istanbul to carry on his work.
Meaning: Stop operating
Example: The firm has decided to close down its France branch.
Look forward to
Meaning: Feel pleased and excited about something that is going to happen
Example: We look forward to hearing from you soon.
Meaning: Write something down
Example: I noted down his phone number.
Meaning: Resign or leave (a position/job)
Example: The chairman was forced to step down due to his old age.
Meaning: Become successful or popular very fast
Example: Her career really took off after that concert.
Meaning: Fill a particular amount of space or time
Example: These files take up a lot of disk space.
Weigh up (UK)
Meaning: Consider carefully the advantages or disadvantages of a situation
Example: I’m weighing up my options before I decide to apply for the job.
Meaning: Make a copy of information
Example: It’s a good idea to back up your files onto a memory stick.
Meaning: Do and complete a task
Example: More research on the subject needs to be carried out.
Meaning: Happen or arise
Example: I’m going to have to cancel our meeting – something’s come up.
Get on (UK)
Meaning: Continue or start doing something
Example: Can we please get on, because there are a lot of things still to discuss.
Keep up with
Example: We try to keep up with what’s happening about financial news.
Meaning: Start (a business)
Example: The group plans to set up an import business.
Meaning: Experience something bad
Example: We can’t really imagine what our company’s going through.
Meaning: Discover a fact or piece of information
Example: I’ll just go and find out what’s going on outside.
Meaning: Cancel something
Example: Union leaders called the strike off at the last minute.
Meaning: To return a call or telephone someone again.
Example: I’ll call you back when I’ve heard something about the interview.
Meaning: Handle (a problem)
Example: He’s good at dealing with problems.
Meaning: Make a short visit without making an arrangement in advance
Example: Drop in whenever you want—I’ll be at the office all day.
Meaning: Complete (a form)
Example: It took me several hours to fill out the application form.
Example: We’ll hold on another minute, then we’ll have to go.
Example: We would be eager to join in work of that sort.
Meaning: Fire (staff)
Example: We have no plans in the immediate future to lay off workers.
Meaning: Delay or postpone
Example: The meeting has been put back to next month.
Run out of
Meaning: Have no more of something
Example: Many companies are running out of time.
Meaning: Organise or fix
Example: Her financial records are a mess, but we’ll sort them out.
Meaning: Employ (staff)
Example: We’re not taking on any new staff at the moment.
Meaning: To begin to have control of or responsibility for something
Example: He understands the business and can take over when I’m away.
Meaning: To rescue somebody from a difficult situation, especially financial problems
Example: The bank helped to bail out the struggling company.
Meaning: To reduce something
Example: In times of economic hardship, firms cut back on training.
Meaning: To become bankrupt
Example: The firm will go under unless business improves.
Meaning: To fail to happen
Example: The sale of the house fell through.
Meaning: To move away from something or stop being involved in it
Example: The project became so expensive that we had to pull out.
Meaning: To stop getting worse
Example: Economists think that the recession is bottoming out.
Meaning: To stop rising or falling and become steady
Example: Inflation has begun to level off.