The Best 10 Idioms You Absolutely Need For Your Business English

We love idioms. We love them so much that we have created this fabulous list with the best 10 idioms to help you feel like a pro in your job, each of them with a special and particular purpose. Check them out!

#1 The Best Idiom For the Confident Ones: Cool As A Cucumber

cool as a cucumber

Did you know that the inside of a cucumber is about 20 degrees cooler than the outside air? Well, this might be the origin of this idiom. 


Extremely calm, relaxed, and in control of your emotions.


  • She was cool as a cucumber before the interview because she was well prepared.
  • It was a very important meeting, but I stayed cool as a cucumber because I knew our product was the best.

#2 The Best Idiom For International Teams: Hot Potatohot potato

A hot potato is definitely something you don’t want to hold with your bare hands for a long time, because it would burn your fingers. The idea here is that you are dealing with something you want to pass on as quickly as possible, just like a literal hot potato.


A controversial subject that no one wants to talk about; often an issue that makes everyone feel uncomfortable.


  • Gun control is a political hot potato.
  • I try to avoid discussing about religion, it can be a hot potato.

#3 The Best Idiom For Newcomers: Learn The Ropes

learn the ropes

If you are going to sail, you will need to learn how to tie knots and manipulate the ropes that move the sails in the best way possible. That is the origin of our third idiom! 


Learn how to do things.


  • As a professional, you need to constantly learn the ropes to do really well in your career.
  • He still needs to learn the ropes, but he has great skills.

#4 The Best Idiom For Negotiations: The Ball Is In Your Court

ball is in your court

From the world of ships we go now to the world of sports. Whether it comes from tennis or from basketball, the idea is clear: it’s your turn to make a move.


It’s your turn to make a decision or do something.


  • I’ve done what I can. Now the ball is in your court.
  • Everybody in this company will support you if you decide to move to another country but the ball is in your court if you decide to change your mind at the last minute.
  • I've already told you that Talaera is a super cool option to learn English, but now the ball is in your court.

# 5 The Best Idiom To Talk About What You Can't See: Behind The Scenes

behind the scenes

The equator of our list takes us to the theatre. Behind the scenes was originally used to talk about those events in a play that happen off stage, where the audience cannot see.


Done privately or secretly, rather than publicly.


  • There is a lot of negotiation going on behind the scenes.
  • I can tell there is a lot of work behind the scenes.
  • If you want to check out what happens behind the scenes at Talaera, visit our Facebook page.

#6 The Best Idiom To Agree: On The Same Page

on the same page

It seems that the origin of this idiom is attributed to choral singing, when all singers had to be on the same page to be able to sing all together the same song.


Understand each other and agree.


  • Before we begin the discussion, I want to make sure that we are all on the same page.
  • I have a great connection with my manager, I always feel we are on the same page.

#7 The Best Idiom To Finish An Activity: Call It A Day

call it a day

Seemingly, this phrase was born from “call it half a day”, which was used to say goodbye to work by employees before the working day was over


Decide to stop working or doing an activity


  • I think we should call it a day and go home.
  • We have been working on this all day, why don’t we call it a day?

#8 The Best Idiom To Summarise: In A Nutshell

in a nutshell

How much can you fit inside a nutshell? Not much. Shakespeare’s Hamlet uses it to mean something compact when he says  ‘I could be bounded in a nutshell, and count myself a king of infinite space, were it not that I have bad dreams’.


In summary, in a few words.


  • She put the matter in a nutshell.
  • Our traffic is rising, customers are happy, and our revenue is still growing; in a nutshell, our business is a success.

#9 The Best Idiom For The Brave Ones: Long Shot

long shot

Unless you’re Michael Jordan, long shots tend to have a small chance of succeeding. This is basically the idea of our 9th idiom. If you're brave and still decide to go for it, even with a small chance of succeeding, this idiom is all for you.


An attempt or guess with very small chance of succeeding or being accurate.


  • I know it's a long shot, because there are many candidates, but I'm going to apply for the manager's job.
  • It's a long shot, but well worth trying.

#10 The Best Idiom For the Connected Team: Touch Base

touch base

I bet you guessed, but just in case, this phrase refers to the rule that a runner in baseball must touch the base on which he/she is standing before running to the next base.

In business, before taking an important action, you often “touch base” to get approval or make sure that it is a good idea.


Briefly make or renew contact with someone.


  • I just wanted to touch base and make sure you hadn’t changed your mind about seeing me.
  • I just wanted to quickly touch base with you: did you get an email from my secretary about the meeting?

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