Richard-Business Eng
Professional Teacher
Important Phrasal Verbs Used in Work and Business
The following phrasal verbs (verb + preposition/adverb) are commonly used in informal conversation, as well as in work and business in Canada, the US and the UK


Build on
Meaning: Use something good to achieve more / Develop or improve a past achievement
Example: We BUILT ON our early successes. / The company needs to improve our sales, so we should build on the sales of our most popular products.

Build up
Meaning: Develop a company / Increase
Example: She BUILT the business UP from nothing into a market leader in less than a decade. / Our employee's job dis-satisfaction is building up to the point that they may go on strike soon.

Burn out
Meaning: Lose mental and physical energy to continue in a demanding job because of working too much and/or suffering from too much stress.. 
Example: Our manager BURNT OUT after working 70 hours per week, six days per week, so he had to stop working and rest until his health improved.

Buy into
Meaning: Believe and accept an idea
Example: A lot of the websites users did not like the new version of the website, so they did not buy into the idea that it would be better.

Buy out
Meaning: Buy somebody's share in a company
Example: His business partners BOUGHT him OUT because he was a bad business partner, so they paid him to leave the company.

Buy up
Meaning: Buy all of something
Example: Our purchasing department BOUGHT UP all of our supplier's stock because purchasing knew that the price was going to increase dramatically in the very near future.

If you have any comments or questions about any of these phrasal verbs, feel free to leave a comment.
Oct 3, 2016 3:47 PM
Comments · 5
Thank you very much @Richard for a nice explanation:) I must admit that you really make a thing simple for others:) I buy it:)
October 5, 2016


Your sentence "italki is a nice language learning hub and I'm quite sure that most of the users must buy into this fact." is not wrong, however, the phrasal verb 'buy into' is usually used in reference to a new idea, a new proposal, or any other new concept.

Normally one would not buy into a fact, since facts are usually based on evidence that compels one to accept the fact, as opposed to one being encouraged, convinced or motivated to accept and support an idea or to completely believe in a set of ideas.

Here are a few more typical uses:

- Many people in the UK bought into the proposition to separate from the European Union.

- She had never bought into the idea that to be attractive you have to be thin.

- You don’t buy into all this nonsense, do you? [this question is not asking if you buy into my explanation :) ]

Does my explanation help? Do you 'buy it'?

October 4, 2016

Thank you @Richard for some really helpful phrasal verbs:)

"Buy into" is new to me.Let me make a sentence---italki is a nice language learning hub and I'm quite sure that most of the users must buy into this fact.

Another small confusion about "build on" and "build up".Can I use it alternatively? for example--Newspaper really build on/build up your memory.

Please put some light on this.Thank you:)

October 4, 2016


You have probably used the verb "burn out" because you are a school teacher and teaching in a school can be very demanding physically and mentally.

Your two sentences , using buy up and buy in are good examples.

Thank you for your helpful comments.

October 4, 2016

I like this discussions a lot!

I find very difficult to use and remember phrasal verbs and seeing them here, helps me to pick up those that I find useful for myself.

I must admit that from this list I have used many times the phrasal verb "Burn out", I wonder why! 

However, I didn't know about the verb "Buy" and I think I might use these ones:

There are some companies that buy up a particular product not to let others sell it.

I told my sister about starting a new business together but she didn't buy into my idea.

Thank you so much for these discussions!

October 3, 2016
Richard-Business Eng
Language Skills
English, French
Learning Language