Expressions using Themes (e.g. Collocations, IELTS, Business English)

Collocations With The Word Brain

Collocations are words that usually go together in English.

Here we are going to look at words that go with 'brain(s)' to make useful and popular expressions you will hear in social and professional contexts.


Brainstorm

A 'brainstorm' is a period of time used for coming up with an idea(s) or solution(s), usually as part of a group.

Examples

  • The company had their employees take part in a brainstorming session to think up some new designs for their brand.
  • I sat with a pen and a bit of paper to brainstorm some ideas for my next article. Doing so always helps me to focus my mind on the task at hand.
  • Engineers have been trying to brainstorm possible reasons why the machinery is continually malfunctioning.


Brain-teaser

A 'brain-teaser' is a challenge or puzzle that is difficult to solve. It is typically not serious, and usually done as a form of intellectually stimulating entertainment. Also 'brainteaser'.

Examples

  • I like to see how potential new employees solve problems, so I include brainteasers in the job interview.
  • I'm still trying to figure out the riddle Gary gave me. It's a real brain-teaser!
  • Carol enjoys siting down with a coffee to tackle the brainteasers in her Sunday newspaper.


No-brainer

A 'no-brainer', is something, especially a choice or decision, that is obvious and requires little thought. A slang term.

Examples

  • The rival company offered me a 20% increase in salary and a company car, so the decision to leave my current job and join them was an absolute no-brainer.
  • Launching an advertising campaign to coincide with the release of the product should have been a no-brainerbut for some reason upper management ruled against it.
  • Person A: "I've been offered a teaching job in Dubai, but I'm not sure whether I should take it or stay where I am." Person B: "You can't turn down an opportunity like that. It's a no-brainer!


Brainwash (somebody)

When you 'brainwash somebody', you use methods to alter their thoughts and beliefs in order to get them to think and act as you would like them to.

Examples

  • There are a lot of con men in business who can brainwash people into handing over all their money to them.
  • Alex doesn't trust the media. He's convinced they are brainwashing the public into believing war with that country is necessary.
  • Clever marketing has brainwashed us into always wanting the latest technological gadgets.


Pick (somebody's) brain(s)

When you 'pick somebody's brain', you ask them for advice or information about something.

Examples

  • I spent the meeting picking Carol's brain for ideas for the upcoming launch.
  • Hey Paul, do you have a moment? I was hoping to pick your brains about a problem I've been having with the software.
  • If you're having problems with your car then you should pick Fiona's brain. She's the expert around here.


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