38 Useful Business Phrasal Verbs in English

Learn business phrasal verbs commonly used in the workplace.

List of business phrasal verbs in English.

Branch out

  • Meaning: Expand or extend one’s interests
  • Example: The supermarkets have branched out into banking.

Break into

  • Meaning: Enter (with effort or force)
  • Example: It’s always been his ambition to break into broadcasting.

Carry on

  • Meaning: Continue
  • Example: He moved to New York to carry on his work.

Close down

  • Meaning: Stop operating
  • Example: The firm has decided to close down its Chicago branch.

Look forward to

  • Meaning: Anticipate with pleasure
  • Example: We look forward to hearing from you soon.

Note down

  • Meaning: Write something down
  • Example: Her answers were noted down on the chart.

Step down

  • Meaning: Resign or leave (a position/job)
  • Example: The chairman was forced to step down due to ill health.

Take off

  • Meaning: Become successful or popular very fast
  • Example: Her business has really taken off.

Take up

  • Meaning: Fill a particular amount of space or time
  • Example: These files take up a lot of disk space.

Weigh up

  • Meaning: Consider
  • Example: You should weigh up the advantages and disadvantages of each type before buying.

Back up

  • Meaning: Make a copy of information
  • Example: It’s a good idea to back up your files onto a memory stick.

Carry out

  • Meaning: Do and complete a task
  • Example: The building work was carried out by a local contractor.

Come up

  • Meaning: Happen or arise
  • Example: I’m going to have to cancel our meeting – something’s come up.

Get on

  • Meaning: Continue or start doing something
  • Example: She told us to get on with our work.

Keep up with

  • Meaning: Follow
  • Example: We try to keep up with what’s happening about finacial news.

Set up

  • Meaning: Start (a business)
  • Example: The group plans to set up an import business.

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Business Phrasal Verbs

Go through

  • Meaning: Experience something bad
  • Example: We can’t really imagine what our company’s going through.

Find out

  • Meaning: Discover a fact or piece of information
  • Example: Can you find out what our customers think of their local bus service?

Call off

  • Meaning: Cancel something
  • Example: With the weather worsening, they have called off their field trip.

Call back

  • Meaning: To telephone someone again
  • Example: I’ll call you back when I’ve heard something about interview.

Deal with

  • Meaning: Handle (a problem)
  • Example: I spent the morning dealing with my emails.

Drop in

  • Meaning: Make a short visit somewhere
  • Example: I will drop in tomorrow morning.

Fill out

  • Meaning: Complete (a form)
  • Example: It took me several hours to fill out the application form.

Hold on

  • Meaning: Wait
  • Example: We’ll hold on another minute, then we’ll have to go.

Join in

  • Meaning: Participate
  • Example: We would be eager to join in projects of that sort.

Lay off

  • Meaning: Fire (staff)
  • Example: They’ve had to cut back production and lay off workers.

Put back

  • Meaning: Delay or postpone
  • Example: The meeting has been put back to next week.

Run out of

  • Meaning: Have no more of something
  • Example: Many companies are running out of money.

Sort out

  • Meaning: Organise or fix
  • Example: I need to sort out the mess on my desk.

Take on

  • Meaning: Employ (staff)
  • Example: We’re not taking on any new staff at the moment.

Take over

  • Meaning: To take control of something
  • Example: IBM is taking over the smaller company.

Bail out

  • Meaning: To rescue somebody from a difficult situation, especially financial problems
  • Example: Some local businesses have offered to bail out the museum.

Cut back

  • Meaning: To reduce something
  • Example: Several major hospitals are cutting back on staff at the moment.

Go under

  • Meaning: To become bankrupt
  • Example: The firm will go under unless business improves.

Fall through

  • Meaning: If an agreement, plan, sale etc. falls through, it is not completed successfully
  • Example: The planned purchase of the racecourse fell through.

Pull out

  • Meaning: To move away from something or stop being involved in it
  • Example: The project became so expensive that we had to pull out.

Bottom out

  • Meaning: To stop getting worse
  • Example: There are signs that the recession has bottomed out.

Level off

  • Meaning: To stop rising or falling and become steady
  • Example: Inflation has begun to level off.

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Business Phrasal Verbs

 

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