Expressions used in Everyday Spoken English in Social and Professional contexts


1) having too few or less staff than normal
  • How to MemorizePopularity HighProfessional MediumSocial
    • the hospital was short-staffed
  • Analysis
    To be ‘short’ of something means to be lacking it or not to have enough of something. If you are ‘short-staffed’ it means you don’t have enough or adequate staff to be at your most efficient or to do the work that is necessary. This is a common term used to explain a staff shortage used in professional contexts.
  • Social Examples (Basic)
    1. I was waiting for ages for my food to arrive in the restaurant. It seemed like they were short-staffed.
    2. I have heard that the cinema is short-staffed, maybe you could apply there for a job?
  • Professional Examples (Basic)
    1. Whenever the hospital is short-staffed, patients have to wait hours to be seen by a doctor.
    2. The restaurant was terribly understaffed last night so I had to work a double shift. I was run off my feet!
  • Further Suggestions
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