Business Idioms: Idioms about Progress

work way upHoping for improvement is natural. After all, we all want to get better and the same is true in business. For this reason we are going to use this installment of Business Idioms to discuss some idioms about progress.

to gain ground – to go forward or to make progress.

  • We have been number two in our industry for years but we are gaining ground on the market leaders.

Note: get off the ground is a related idiom that is used to describe making a successful beginning (e.g., Without the proper marketing our new range never had a chance to get off the ground).

a step in the right direction – an positive action that is expected to result in some advancement or improvement.

  • Although it’s still not perfect, with the changes made to our product I feel that the relaunch is definitely a step in the right direction.

Note: another similar walking based idiom is making strides which refers to making large improvement or progress (e.g., we have been making strides in the efficiency of our systems).

to go great guns – to go fast or successfully.

  • We were going great guns with the new design until we realised there was a fault with the safety of the toy and had to take it back to the drawing board.

to work your way up – to make progress in a process or structure.

  • He worked his way up from the mail room and is now a sales manager.

Note: to the top can be added to this idiom – as in work your way to the top – meaning that you reach the pinnacle of the process or structure (e.g., He started in the mail room and worked his way to the top to become CEO).

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