How to say this correctly?:

"I have worked for a company, where there was no lunch brake at all."

I am mixing up two tenses: present perfect and past simple. I am not sure if it is correct. Please point out where am I wrong, if S

Aug 22, 2016 6:47 AM
Comments · 4

I think the grammar sequence in your sentence is fine, you really need to talk about experience using the perfect tense  because its something which cant  be measured (in other words it doesn´t have a start or end date). A lunch break on the other hand does have a start date and end date so you are right to use the simple tense there. 

One of the main functions of the perfect tenses is to talk about things in terms of their results and actions, not in terms of start dates and end dates. Its a very complex thing, I can send you my booklet on perfect tenses which explains it further.  Things like life experience, love, and the "bigger" things in life which flow through all of us cant really be spoken about using the past simple. They cant be boxed into time. 

Imagine a job interview, if you start talking about experience in the simple past, you would quickly get confused because it implies time.  whereas the perfect tenses allow you freedom to talk generally and how it can help you move on. 

August 23, 2016

"I have worked for a company, where there was no lunch brake at all."

I have some opinions about grammar for your sentence, Radoslav :D 

+ Present perfect should be used to indicate results and time. "I have worked for a company" - literally, it means you started to work for a company at some point in the past, and now you are still working for that company, you have not quit yet. 

+ "There was no lunch break at all" - in the past, at some point you did not mention exactly, there was no lunch break. It is a correct sentence. However, when you combine 2 sentences, as Dan said above, you will see something here. You have worked for a company (you are still working now!) and there was no lunch break (in the past). How about now? Maybe they have provided lunch break since some point in the past right after you had complained. 

=> my idea is that you should change the tense of the first sentence to past perfect, or just simply use "used to", so as your sentences can get an agreement in time. 

- I had worked for a company where there was no lunch break at all. 

- I used to work for a company where there was no lunch break at all. 

Thank you for reading this 


August 23, 2016

Thank you @Dan Smith.

I often misspell that word, and the spell-check doesn't catch it as well :). 

In the example above I was trying to get closer to specifics of the present perfect. I admit that I find this tense most difficult of all. I often mistake it with simple past, using that one instead of the other and vice versa. 

So, I am working on my CV in English. Now I am at the field where I have to tell about my communication experience and where wasit acquired. This is what I wrote:

"I have worked as a Maintenance Engineer at Filkab, Plovdiv, Bulgaria. During my work, I have had many contacts with English speaking customers and partners."

Please note that I want to emphasize where I have had contact with English speakers.

Any correction(not only on the quoted sentence, but the entire comment) is very much welcome.

August 23, 2016
Show More
Language Skills
Bulgarian, English, French
Learning Language
English, French