25 Business English Vocabulary Words A-Z

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Hello students! Today is the final day in our 100-word challenge – I hope you’ve been enjoying it and learning a lot! Our theme for this last video is business vocabulary – one of the most requested topics by all of you.

There are thousands of business vocabulary words in English, and you can learn many of them inside my Business English course. For this video, I’m going to go through the alphabet A-Z and teach you a business-related word starting with each letter.

agenda (n.)

OK, our word starting with A is agenda. An agenda, in the business world, is a list of things to be discussed in a meeting. Every meeting should have one to keep it organized and efficient.

budget (n./v.)

For B we have budget – that is a plan for spending money or dividing it up among different areas. Companies have budgets, governments have budgets, and everyday people like you and me should have them, too.

25 Business English Vocabulary Words A-Z Espresso English

compensation (n.)

For C our word is compensation, this is what a business gives to its employees in exchange for their work. Compensation has multiple parts – there’s the salary, which is the money, and then benefits – things like health insurance or opportunities for bonuses or company stock.

deadline (n.)

For the letter D, we have deadline – that’s the final date/time before which a project must be finished. In business we typically call it a deadline, and in the academic world we usually call it a due date.

estimate (n./v.)

For E we have this word, which is pronounced estimate (ES-ti-mate, rhyming with “hate”) when used as a verb and estimate (ES-ti-met, rhyming with “get”) when used as a noun. To estimate is to make an educated guess.

franchise (n./v.)

For F our word is franchise. If a business is successful – like let’s say I open up an Espresso English school in my town – I can expand my business by giving other people permission to open up their own schools using the Espresso English name and teaching method, and they would pay me a certain percentage. Then Espresso English would become a franchise, with multiple locations run by different people.

25 Business English Vocabulary Words A-Z Espresso English

gross profit (n.)

Our G word is gross profit. If it costs me $20 to make a product and I sell it for $100, then my gross profit is $80 – it’s the difference between the cost to create it and the sales price, before considering other expenses like taxes, employees, storage space, etc. If the other expenses cost an average of $30 per product, then I actually end up with a net profit of $50 per product.

Human Resources (HR) (n.)

For H we have Human Resources (HR). This is the part of a company responsible for employees – training them, processing salary payments, resolving any conflicts, etc.

inventory (n.) & invoice (n./v.)

I have a couple words for I – inventory, which refers to a quantity of products a company has available or in storage, and invoice which is a request/requirement for payment. If someone creates some advertisements for me, they would then send me an invoice for their work, and I’d have to pay it.

25 Business English Vocabulary Words A-Z Espresso English

joint venture (n.)

For J we have joint venture – this is a collaboration between two people or companies – they work together on the project.

KPI (n.) – Key Performance Indicator

Our K term is KPI, which stands for key performance indicator. This is a number that we can use to measure performance. It could be something like number of sales per month, or average speed for a website, or customer satisfaction rate. Something countable or measurable so that a business or a part of the business can understand if it’s doing well or needs improvement.

lucrative (adj.)

For L we have the adjective lucrative – if something is lucrative, it means it generates lots of money, it is profitable.

maternity leave (n.)

Our M word is maternity leave – this is time off given to women who have a baby. In some countries it’s required by law; unfortunately in the U.S. it’s not.

networking (n./v.)

The letter N is for networking – in business, networking is making social connections with other people with the aim of helping or supporting each other.

25 Business English Vocabulary Words A-Z Espresso English

outsource (v.)

O is for outsource. To outsource a task/project means to give it to someone outside the company. Many places that make products outsource the manufacturing to countries or places where it’s cheaper to make things.

prospective customer/client (adj.+n.)

For P we have prospective customer/client – this is someone who is not YET a customer, but who has the potential to become one.

quarter (n.) / quarterly (adv.)

Our Q word is quarter – this refers to a three-month period, which is one quarter or one-fourth of the year. Many businesses analyze things quarterly, meaning every quarter.

recruit (v.)

For R we have the verb recruit – this means to hire or try to hire people. Some law firms recruit students who are graduating from top law schools – they approach them and try to hire them.

scale (v./n.)

A common S word is scale – you might hear about a business scaling up, meaning growing, expanding, serving more people.

25 Business English Vocabulary Words A-Z Espresso English

turnover (n.)

For T our word is turnover, and this refers to how often workers leave a company and need to be replaced. Companies want to keep turnover low so that workers stay for a longer time.

union (n.)

For U we have union – also called a labor union or trade union. This is an association of employees that aims to improve things for workers (better salaries and working conditions) by negotiating with the employer.

venture capital (n.)

Our V term is venture capital. This refers to money available to invest in new companies, startup companies, that have a high potential for growth but also a high potential for failure. The money can come from rich people or from banks.

wholesale (n./adj./v./adv.)

For W we have wholesale – this is selling things in large quantities to other people who will resell them individually. So maybe you have a factory that makes computers and sells them wholesale to a store – the store might buy 10,000 computers and then sell them one by one to customers.

YTD (year to date) / YoY (year over year)

I’m skipping X because I couldn’t find a good business word for it, but I have a couple abbreviations for Y – YTD which stands for year to date, meaning from January 1 until now, and YoY which stands for year over year, a business might grow 10% YoY for example, meaning it’s 10% bigger now than it was last year.

zoning (n.)

And finally Z is for zoning. This refers to the rules established by a city about what kind of buildings can be built in which areas. Some areas might be zoned residential, meaning you can only build houses there, not businesses or huge towers. Others might be zoned industrial, meaning you can build a factory there.

25 Business English Vocabulary Words A-Z Espresso English


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This brings us to the end of our vocabulary challenge week! Thanks for joining me.

But it doesn’t end here – if you want to keep going, keep building and expanding your vocabulary, then come join my Vocabulary Builder Course.

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25 Business English Vocabulary Words A-Z Espresso English