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[翻译]Words and Their Stories - The Cost of Doing Business

更新时间:2017/1/15 10:05:19 来源:本站原创 作者:佚名

Now, the VOA Learning English program Words and Their Stories.

There are many special terms in the world of business. The following story is about a woman who has a business making signs. She tells us about a recent sweetheart deal. She made a deal with a friend, and they both made a profit.

商界有许多专门的术语。接下来的故事是关于一位拥有一家广告牌制作公司的女性。这位女性给我们讲述了她近期的一次私下交易,她同一位朋友做了交易,双方都赚了。
sweetheart deal:私下交易。

Here is Faith Lapidus with that story.

以下由Faith Lapidus为大家这个故事。

I had started a small company several years ago. I worked hard to make it successful. It was a sign-making business. It was a small company, not a blue chip company. It was not known nationally for the quality of its signs. It did not make millions of dollars in profits. And it was private. It was not a public company with shares traded on the stock market.

几年前我开设了一家小公司。我努力经营谋求成功。这是一家广告牌制作公司。它是一家小公司,并非什么蓝筹大企业。它制作的广告牌质量并未享誉全国,也赚不到数百万美元的利润。这是一家私营公司,并非一家股票在股市交易的上市公司。
blue chip company:蓝筹股企业

Still, I worked hard building up my business. I did not work only a few hours each day -- no banker’s hours for me. Instead I spent many hours each day, seven days a week, trying to grow the company. I never cut corners or tried to save on expenses. I made many cold calls. I called on possible buyers from a list of people I had never seen. Such calls were often hard sells. I had to be very firm.

然而,我并非每天只工作几个小时,我的工作并不轻松。相反,我一周七天都花很多时间在试图发展壮大这家公司。我从不刻意节省开支。我给一堆素未谋面的潜在客户打了很多推销电话,这类推销电话通常都是强行推销。我必须非常坚强。
banker's hours:Banker是银行家。三十多年前银行开门营业的短,从早上十点到下午两、三点就结束了,银行家的上班每天四、五个小时,于是人们就开始流行用banker's hours说法来特指安逸舒适的工作了。cut corners: 节省开支;cold calls: 推销电话;hard sells: 强行推销,硬性推销。

Sometimes I sold my signs at a loss. I did not make money on my product. When this happened, there were cut backs. I had to use fewer supplies and reduce the number of workers. But after several years, the company broke even. Profits were equal to expenses. And soon after, I began to gain ground. My signs were selling very quickly. They were selling like hotcakes.

有时候我亏本卖出广告牌,在产品上没赚到钱。这时候就要削减开支,我只能使用更少的物质,并减少工人数量。但是几年之后,公司开始收支平衡,利润约等于支出。不久之后,我开始赢得一席之地。我的广告牌开始畅销,卖得火热。
at a loss: 亏本; cut backs: 削减开支,降低成本;broke even: 收支平衡;gain ground:发展壮大,赢得一席之地。selling like hotcakes:卖得火热。
 

Sales clerks ring up customers at Walmart in Bentonville, Arkansas. More Americans work in retail and as cashiers than in any other occupations. (Photo by Gunnar Rathbun/Invision for Walmart/AP Images)

I was happy. The company was moving forward and making real progress. It was in the black, not in the red. The company was making money, not losing it.

我很高兴,公司正稳步向前发展。账面出现盈余而不是赤字。公司开始赚钱而不是亏本。
in the black: 赢余;in the red亏损,出现赤字。 财务报表上通常用黑色字体表示赢余,红色表示亏损。

My friend knew about my business. He is a leader in the sign-making industry – a real big gun, if you know what I mean. He offered to buy my company. My friend wanted to take it public. He wanted to sell shares in the company to the general public.

我的朋友听说了我的公司。他是广告牌制作行业的领军人物,一位真正的大咖。他出价想收购我的公司并将它上市。他想把这家公司的股份卖给公众。
big gun:大人物;take it public:上市。

My friend believed it was best to strike while the iron is hot. He wanted to take action at the best time possible and not wait. He offered me a ball park estimate of the amount he would pay to buy my company. But I knew his uneducated guess was low. My company was worth much more. He asked his bean-counter to crunch the numbers. That is, he asked his accountant to take a close look at the finances of my company and decide how much it was worth. Then my friend increased his offer.

我的朋友认为最好趁热打铁,在最好的时机采取行动而不是等待。他提出了能出的大致价格想要购买我的公司。但我知道他的估价太低了,我的公司比那值钱得多。他便让他的会计师核算估价,也就是让他的会计师仔细考察我公司的财务状况并估算出它的价值。随后我的朋友提高了报价。
to strike while the iron is hot:趁热打铁;ball park estimate:大致估计。ball park是棒球场,美国的棒球场规格不一,说到棒球场规格时通常是大致估计,从而产生了这个习惯说法。

My friend’s official offer was finally given to me in black and white. It was written on paper and more than I ever dreamed. I was finally able to get a break. I made a huge profit on my company, and my friend also got a bang for the buck. He got a successful business for the money he spent.

我朋友的正式报价终于黑纸白字的交到我手里,这个价格写到了纸上,比我想要的价格更高。我终于时来运转,从我的公司中大赚了一笔。而我的朋友也物有所值,他花钱买到了一家成功企业。
in black and white:黑纸白字;get a break:交好运,时来运转;bang for the buck:物有所值。

And that is the end of our business story. But even if you’re not in business, some of these expressions can be used in other situations.

以上就是本期故事的结局。但是即使你不做生意,其中一些表达也可以在另外一些状况下使用。

For example, you can cut corners or get a break anywhere. Let’s say you are planning a party and don’t have enough money. You might have to cut corners on the food you serve. Or you could get a break by winning $100 on free food at your local grocery store!

例如,你在其它地方也能节省开支或交上好运。假设你正在筹划一场派对,但是没有足够资金。你可能不得不在招待的食物上节省开支。或者你可能会交上好运,在当地杂货店获得100美元的免费食物。

The expression black and white can also mean a very clear choice that leaves no confusion. Sometimes we use it in the negative. Politics, for example, is not as black and white as some people may think. There are often shades of gray when dealing with complicated political issues and how they affect government policy.

白纸黑字这种表达还意味着非常清晰不会混淆的选择。有时候我们把它用于否定。例如,政治可没有有些人想象的那么清白。在处理复杂政治问题及如何影响政府政策时,通常都会有灰色地带。

And that’s all for this Words and Their Stories.

After listening to this story, you should strike while the iron is hot! While the expressions are still fresh in your mind, practice using them in a business conversation.

听完这则故事之后,你应该趁热打铁。当这些表达在你脑海中依然新鲜时,在商务对话中练习使用它们。

I’m Anna Matteo.

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