Hello again and welcome to another episode of the podcast. In this week’s episode of the Art of Business English we are going to review some idioms with the verb “hit” that you might find useful for your next business meeting.
In last week’s episode we looked at another “power” verb, “strike”. If you haven’t checked out episode 206, then you can listen to it here.
Understanding idioms can be hard, as they are basically fixed expressions which are not easily translated into your native language. With that in mind, today we are going to share ten idioms with “hit” and give you their meaning and an example sentence.
Knowing these idioms will help widen your range of knowledge of English expressions, as well as help you understand what people are saying to you when they use them in a conversation.
Let’s see what we got!
(The) shit hits the fan
(Informal) When a situation suddenly causes a lot of trouble for someone.
“I told him I was leaving my job and then the shit hit the fan.”
Hit (one) when (one) is down
To criticize, exploit, insult, or otherwise treat badly one who has already suffered a setback or is in a vulnerable position.
“Can Jeff's employee review wait until next week? His girlfriend just left him, and I don't want to hit him while he's down.”
Hit a wall
To reach a point at which no more progress can be made.
“The energy bill is expected to hit a wall in the Senate, where Republicans have enough votes to block it.”
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Hit it off with
To like someone and become friendly immediately.
“I didn't really hit it off with the sales manager. I found her to be very arrogant”
Hit one’s stride
To reach one's normal speed or level of efficiency.
“Both teams seem to have hit their stride in the second half.”
Hit the jackpot
To have a big success or make a big profit, usually through luck.
“I think we hit the jackpot with the advertising —our sales have doubled.”
Hit the panic button
To react to a situation with fear and confusion.
“When news of the accounting scandal reached the board of directors, they hit the panic button and called an emergency board meeting.”
Hit the nail on the head
To describe exactly what is causing a situation or problem.
“I think Mick hit the nail on the head when he said that what's lacking in this company is a feeling of confidence.”
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To be hit-and-miss
If something is hit-and-miss, you cannot depend on it to be of good quality, on time, accurate, etc.
“Securing that funding has been a problem in the past and has been something of a hit-and-miss affair.”
To take a hit (financially)
To have to pay an unusual cost; to be affected by a difficult financial situation.
“The company recently took a hit to the tune of $4 million in health insurance costs.”
“Consumer spending accounts for more than two-thirds of the nation's economic activity, so when consumers take a hit, so does the economy.”
Well, there you have it, folks. I hope that this episode helps you to express your ideas in a more natural way during your business interactions. Remember that idioms are a group of words in a fixed order that has a particular meaning that is different from the meanings of each word on its own, therefore the best way to learn them is to memorize them and understand how to use them in context.
Please feel free to share this episode with your friends, family or colleagues, and if you have any questions then don’t hesitate to contact me or leave me a comment.
Don’t forget to enrol in my new course “Business English Expressions” online course. This new programme is full of idioms and many other business expressions. It is a 14-module video-based programme with practice quizzes designed to help you internalise what you are learning.
You can enrol here.
Take care till next week.