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Workplace Idioms

12 March 2023

By Jess Watts

Workplace Idioms

As William Shakespeare can attest, words are constantly being made up, and their meanings changing all the time. Different generations bring with them new slang and Gen Z have collated a long list already (check out our previous blog for more insight into Gen Zs in the workplace). Some of these new words are easily deciphered, some less obvious, and the workplace also comes with its own jargon- it can all be a little confusing. Here’s a breakdown of some common Gen Z words and phrases that may be used in the workplace, just to make life easier!



Usually used to describe something that greatly impresses or amazes.

Example: “The new director absolutely slayed their first meeting.”

Slay gif

Glow up

This phrase describes a positive transformation or new version of something or someone. It refers to something that is better than it was before.

Example: “Our social media has had a massive glow up since we hired a marketing manager.”

Glow up gif

W / L

Seemingly just letters, these actually mean, respectively, “win” and “loss”. Using these can indicate someone achieving something good, or the complete opposite.

Example: “The company took a big L today; our most lucrative client left us.”

“Mark just closed a huge deal, what a W.”

W gif


This refers to something overly extravagant and luxurious. Usually describing a person or place that is elite, and/or sheltered from the real world.

Example: Person 1: “He’s going to blow the whole deal by asking for too much money.”

Person 2: “There’s no point trying to talk sense into him, he’s so boujee.”

Boujee gif


A less-commonly used word, used to describe something as uncool, try-hard, and a little cringey.

Example: “That logo design is so cheugy, let’s think of something else.”

Cheugy gif


Unabbreviated- “that feeling when”. Used to provide extra emotional perspective to a situation. References and emphasises a particular feeling.

Example: “TFW it’s Friday and we finish early!”

TFW gif


Contrary to previous definitions, Gen Z use this to describe something exceptionally good or cool. Other similar words that may be used include “sick”, “dope”, and “a vibe”.

Example: “The cookies the new HR coordinator brought in are dank, you have to try one.”

Dank gif

I’m down

This can be confusing as the meaning seems to be its polar opposite. This phrase means someone is up for doing something/they are willing to attend or complete something.

Example: Person 1: “Do you want to come to the conference next week?”

Person 2: “Yeah sure, I’m down.”

I'm down gif


You may have heard some of these idioms used, and many can be deduced from context, however, it is always useful to be prepared. Even if you don’t use them yourself, by being aware of them you’ve already had a major vocabulary glow up!

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