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Cut Corners

Cut Corners English, baby! Video Lesson

Date: Oct 19 2010

Themes: Soap Opera, Work

Grammar: Modal Verbs


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Spending money is easy, but saving money is hard. One way you can save a little more is by finding ways to spend a little less. That’s called cutting corners.

Since her company merged with Devan’s, Marni has been looking at the books and realized they need to reduce spending. Watch as she asks her employees if they have ideas for ways the company can cut corners.

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2. Study - Read the dialog again to see how the vocab words are used.









Marni:  Alright, everyone! I need your attention! Please stop what you’re doing. This is very important.

Dale:  OK, boss!

Marni:  Alright! I have been going over the numbers and we need to cut some corners around here. So, if we cut corners, we could save money, and then potentially make more money. So, I really want this to be priority number one. I want to hear some ideas right now if you’ve got ‘em.

Dale:  I’ve got a good idea!

Marni:  Dale?

Dale:  We can get rid of the tables! Like, who needs a table? I can do this! All the furniture!

Marni:  OK, I was actually thinking more of, like, business practices, you know, like conserving supplies.

Ella:  Um, I’ve been cutting corners all the time. You know, like when I bill you for an hour of work? I only work half. I mean…or I could just not come to work! That would be so much more efficient! You wouldn’t have to pay me at all!

Marni:  We’ll talk to you about that later. Alright. Anything else? Come on, guys! How can we cut corners?

Beren:  We could all use my water glass? The same one. Rinse, reuse…

Dale:  Can I borrow you water glass?

Beren:  Of course! Any time!

Marni:  This is not…this is not working. Alright. Let’s think of ways that we can be more productive using less supplies. If you all want to start bringing your own cups, that’s great, but…I’m afraid about you sharing one because then you could get sick. Which would actually be counterproductive. So! Any more ideas? Nobody has anything?

Beren:  We could not pay Devan? I don’t even know why she’s here!

Marni:  That is not a way to cut corners. You need to think about just, you know, kinda tightening the belt, and reining in spending. We need to make sure we’re not over using any supplies. I see excessive staples a lot of times. You’re just stapling. Like, nonstop! I think once is sufficient. Let’s try that! That would be an example of cutting corners. And saving money. Cutting costs! That’s what this company needs to be about. Are you with me, people? Are you feeling it?


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Marni comes in and tells her employees that the company needs to cut corners. She means they need to save money. But Ella reminds her that cutting corners if you’re an employee can also mean not fully doing your job. When you cut corners, you do the cheapest or easiest thing, but cheapest and easiest aren’t always the same for everyone involved!

In this case, the goal is saving money. Beren suggests the employees all use one water glass. Marni worries this will make them sick and actually cause the company to lose money. She suggests just using one staple, since Dale seems to like to use 20 or so.

Have you ever had to cut corners to save money? Do you ever cut corners at your job so you can slack off?



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jolefrancaisSuper Member!


Everybody at least once in their life had to cut the corners. Unfortunatly for many people they have to make choice every day and making choices means sometimes tighten the belt because they don’t have enough money right !!!! saving money is never a piece of cake cause of the sacrifice but it’s necessary. 

04:32 PM Jun 06 2016 |




Oh yeah,in difficult times we have to do it,isn't it Surprised But there is a good side…I'm not a consuming :)

10:09 AM Dec 03 2010 |



Iran, Islamic Republic Of

i liked ella she is funny and she is right i try not to cut corner at my job becouse i don't waste money at my job

09:16 AM Nov 23 2010 |

Big baby

Big baby

Russian Federation


02:55 PM Oct 25 2010 |




if we need savings,we have to cut corner.

01:08 AM Oct 25 2010 |




this video doesn`t work! general or only on my computer?

01:29 PM Oct 22 2010 |




I'm always trying to cut corners at work and slack off. Am I a fool or what to be as busy as a bee?

12:06 PM Oct 21 2010 |

City Hunter


Hello everyone,

   By talking about cut corners which means as mentioned above saving time ,money, or effort but the results won't be done in a properly way.I think it 's good but for my opinion, I want to do things in a result that looks perfect whatever it takes and costs…..Thanx.

10:45 AM Oct 21 2010 |



Cutting corners is cool when you we talking about working with less effort, not saving money by using less staples. That`s just ridiculous. I like to slack off in work and use as much supply as I want. I`m not accustomed to pinching pennies. It`s not my problem that somebody was born with a plastic spoon in his/ her mouth.

12:58 AM Oct 20 2010 |


Iran, Islamic Republic Of

hi dear teacher,the marnie's speaking is too fast to underestand anything !I couldn't follow it even by reading the words(i  couldnt make a coordination between my eyes and my ears)

10:57 PM Oct 19 2010 |




cutting cost is the best way to save some money. but although I dont have that much of money I sometimes tighten my belt and rein in spending.

04:20 PM Oct 19 2010 |

rebel lee

rebel lee


I am very poor, I don't have lots of money, so I always have to cut corners to save some money.

And to be honest, I do cut corners at my job too. I don't like my job anymore, and the contract with my company will expire by the end of this month.

01:33 PM Oct 19 2010 |



Saudi Arabia

Such action, fun and love to make such acts

08:32 AM Oct 19 2010 |




i have been working very hard all the time just for my career.

08:12 AM Oct 19 2010 |


United States

Of course, I have cut corners for several times! I think they not only save money, but also they save time for everyone.

Sometime, everything that is simple can be good for me!

06:38 AM Oct 19 2010 |




It is the best way to save money and at the same time all our using money is right to expenditure and reasonable.

05:57 AM Oct 19 2010 |




I am very delightful

05:21 AM Oct 19 2010 |

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