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Intermediate Business: Dealing with Deadlines


Let’s practice some expressions. I will read each sentence first. Please read after me.

For setting deadlines:

  1. You have five days to complete this project.
  2. We have until the end of this month to accomplish the project.
  3. We have three more weeks to complete the project.

If the project could not be accomplished after the set deadline:

  1. Due to some reasons, I am afraid I could not make it to the deadline.
  2. I apologize, but we can’t complete this work by the date that you have requested.

Let’s read the dialogue. I will be Mr. Evans and you will be Mr. Davies. After reading it once, we’ll switch roles.


Mr. Davies calls for a meeting to inquire about the progress of the project that he assigned to Mr. Evans.

Good afternoon, Mr. Evans. I apologize for taking a few minutes of your time today. I would like to talk to you regarding the project that I assigned you last week. How is it?
No worries, Mr. Davies. As of now, I have done 70% of the project. However, I find it hard to accomplish the project at a faster pace because I need to acquire some information from other managers to finish some parts.

Is that so? I guess I was not able to foresee that problem. It turns out that the extent of the project is bigger than I anticipated. I think we could make some adjustments regarding the deadline for the project. How much time would you need within two weeks to accomplish the project?
The original deadline is on Monday. I guess I would need additional three days to fully accomplish the project. It will be done by Friday next week. Would that be fine, Mr. Davies?

Absolutely, Mr. Evans. I agree with the three-day extension of the project’s deadline. I am expecting to see the accomplished report on the project on Friday morning. I know you won’t let me down.
Thank you. Noted on that, Mr. Davies. You have my word.

Please answer the questions based on the dialogue.

1. Why does Mr. Evans find it hard to accomplish the project?
Answer: ________________
2. What adjustment did they make regarding the deadline for the project?
Answer: ________________

Choose the correct meaning of the underlined word in each sentence.

  1. b. to succeed in doing or finishing something
  2. a. to expect or to prepare for something before it happens
  3. c. to expect a future situation or event


  1. The manager was able to accomplish the given task before the deadline.
    1. to make a progress report
    2. to succeed in doing or finishing something
    3. to receive feedback
  2. The company was able to anticipate the decrease in their production this week.
    1. to expect or to prepare for something before it happens
    2. to give new information
    3. to change something to make it better
  3. The manager was not able to foresee the problems before they affected the team’s performance.
    1. to introduce major changes
    2. to stop expectations on something
    3. to expect a future situation or event

Let’s talk. Please answer my questions.

1. Have you ever missed a deadline at work or at school? What did you do to make up for it?
Answer: ________________
2. Do you think not meeting the deadline is fine as long as the task is accomplished? Why? Why not?
Answer: ________________

Please tell me what you will do given the following situations.

1. While working on a project, you noticed that the deadline of the project given by your manager is tomorrow. However, you are having a tough time and you still need an extension of two days to accomplish the most important part of the project. How would you tell your manager about it?
Answer: ________________
2. You gave a task to one of the employees you are currently training at work. The task should be finished by the end of the month. How would you tell the employee about the task’s deadline?
Answer: ________________