Business Phrasal Verbs. Increase Your Overall Understanding Of English by Duncan Grant - Profesor de inglés nativo

Business Phrasal Verbs. Increase Your Overall Understanding Of English

Business Phrasal verbs


If you’re not a native speaker of English and wish to learn the language, Phrasal Verbs are going to be your best friend and your worst enemy – NOT in that order. At first phrasal verbs are complicated, difficult, and unruly.  However, as you progress and strengthen your understanding, phrasal verbs become useful tools and also demonstrate an advanced knowledge of the English language. But before we look at my favourite phrasal verbs used in business, what exactly is a phrasal verb?


Phrasal verbs are phrases that utilize a verb and often one to two (or more) elements, such as a preposition, that combine to form a single unit with a specific meaning. Often phrasal verbs change the meaning of the original verb being used. For example, let’s examine the verb, ‘put.’ This verb literally means to place or to move something, such as an object.


  • “Where did you put the coffee?”
    • “I put the coffee in the shelf next to the dish washer!”


‘Put’ can be used in a multitude of ways. When we add the preposition, ‘on,’ after the verb ‘put,’ we make the phrasal verb, ‘(to) put on.’ To ‘put on,’ also has a variety of meanings and often depends on the subject and context of what the user is trying to say. For example, we can say:


  • “I need to put on a rain-jacket because it is raining.” (meaning: to wear the jacket)
  • “Thank you for putting on this event!” (meaning: organizing the event)
  • “Can you please put the light on?” (meaning: to use the light)


Phrasal Verbs require practice and patience, and now that we have looked at what they are, I’m going to tell you about some helpful phrasal verbs used in business!



  • To Set Up: to organize, to plan, or establish something

    • “Would you please set up a meeting with the Board of Directors on Tuesday Morning?"
    • “We set up the office in Madrid almost four years ago.”
  • To Call Off: to cancel something, such as an event, a meeting, or a task.

    • “I apologize for the delay, but I had to call off the telephone conference because of an unexpected problem in Operations.”
    • “I wanted to go to the conference but it was called off due to bad weather.”
  • To Double-Check: to re-evaluate something for a second time to ensure accuracy.

    • “Do you have enough time to double-check the figures for this month’s revenue? I don’t want there to be any mistakes!”
    • “I had to double-check on my new recruit to make sure he was working efficiently.”
  • To Take Over: to assume control of something.

    • “I was very shocked when Maria left the office and Jennifer replaced her as CEO.”
    • “Coca-Cola would love to take over Pepsi! But that’s never going to happen!”
  • To Figure Out: to solve or to understand something

    • “I can’t figure out why sales have dropped 5% this quarter?”
    • “If we can’t figure out where the problem is coming from, it’s possible we won’t be profitable this month.”


These are my five favourite Phrasal Verbs used in business! There is a plethora of phrasal verbs in the English Language, so you had better start learning them now! One great trick for learning these tricky expressions is to say them out loud with a friend (or a teacher!). What are your favourite phrasal verbs? Contact me and let me know!

1ª Clase Gratis