How To Use A Verb

How To Use A Verb

Welcome to my 2nd installment of a three-part grammar series. Today’s blog post is on how to use a verb effectively. In the English language, verbs play a vital role in conveying actions, states of being, or events. Using verbs properly is important in professional communication, whether you are writing an email, a formal report, or engaging in a business conversation. It helps maintain a professional tone and accurately conveys your message.

Verbs are often referred to as the “action words” of a sentence. They define what the subject of the sentence is doing or experiencing. By using verbs effectively, you can add clarity and precision to your communication, making it easier for your audience to understand your intended message.

In this blog post, we will explore various aspects of verb usage, starting with a basic introduction. We will cover different verb tenses, the importance of subject-verb agreement, and common mistakes to avoid. By the end, you will have a better understanding of how to choose the right verb and structure your sentences professionally.

Whether you are a native English speaker looking to refine your writing skills or a non-native English speaker seeking to improve your language proficiency, this blog post will provide valuable insights and practical tips to enhance your verb usage.

So, let’s dive into the world of verbs and discover how to wield them effectively in your business communications.

Importance of verbs in language

How to use a verb

Verbs are an essential component of language, playing a crucial role in effective communication. They add action, express states of being, and convey a sense of time and progression. Without verbs, sentences would lack vitality and become stagnant. In a professional setting, where clear and concise communication is paramount, understanding the importance of verbs becomes even more crucial.

One primary function of verbs is to express actions. They enable us to describe what someone is doing, has done, or will do in the future. For example, in a business context, verbs can be utilized to articulate tasks being accomplished within a team, such as “developing a marketing strategy,” “conducting market research,” or “creating financial reports.” By using dynamic verbs to express actions, professionals can effectively convey their involvement, participation, and contribution to projects and tasks.

Verbs also allow us to convey states of being or existence. They help us describe conditions, emotions, or qualities that someone possesses. In a professional environment, this is particularly relevant when conveying personal attributes, presenting qualifications, or discussing personal growth. For instance, verbs like “leading,” “innovating,” or “inspiring” communicate leadership qualities, whereas verbs such as “analyzing,” “strategizing,” or “organizing” portray professional skills and capabilities.

Furthermore, verbs enable us to express time and progression. They facilitate effective storytelling by introducing sequences, timelines, and progressions. In business writing, verbs can be used to communicate project timelines, milestones, and achievements. For example, “The marketing campaign will launch next month, targeting a new customer segment,” or “Over the past year, our sales have increased by 20%.” By utilizing verbs to describe time and progression, professionals can provide a clear and concise overview of business activities and achievements.

In conclusion, verbs hold great importance in language, especially in a professional setting. They express actions, states of being, and convey a sense of time and progression. Using dynamic verbs not only adds vigor and vitality to communication but also ensures clarity and effectiveness. By understanding how to use verbs effectively, professionals can enhance their business writing skills and effectively convey their ideas, experiences, and achievements.

Definition of a verb

How to use a verb

A verb is an essential component of any sentence and serves as a key part of speech in the English language. Simply put, a verb is a word or group of words that expresses an action, occurrence, or state of being. It is primarily used to describe what the subject of the sentence is doing or experiencing.

Verbs can communicate a wide range of actions, from physical activities like running, jumping, or lifting, to mental processes such as thinking, remembering, or understanding. They can also express emotions like love, hate, or fear, as well as indicate a state of existence, ownership, or change.

In addition to conveying actions and states, verbs play a crucial role in constructing the structure of a sentence. They typically express tense, telling us whether an action has happened in the past, is happening in the present, or will happen in the future. Verbs also establish the relationship between the subject and the other elements of the sentence, such as direct objects, indirect objects, and other modifiers.

Verbs can take on various forms, including both regular and irregular verbs. Regular verbs follow a consistent pattern when forming the past tense or past participle, usually by adding “-ed” or “-d” to the base form of the verb. For example, “talk” becomes “talked” in the past tense. On the other hand, irregular verbs do not follow this pattern and have their own unique forms. For instance, “go” becomes “went” in the past tense.

To use a verb effectively, it is essential to consider its tense, subject-verb agreement, and appropriate usage within the context of a sentence. Ensuring that the verb aligns with the subject in terms of number and person is crucial for grammatical accuracy and clarity.

Mastering the usage of verbs can greatly enhance one‘s writing and communication skills. By understanding the definition and various forms of verbs, individuals can construct sentences that effectively convey action, express thoughts, and establish relationships between different sentence elements.

Understanding the role of verbs

How to use a verb

Verbs are an essential part of any professional communication, enabling us to convey actions, states, or occurrences. Understanding the role of verbs is crucial as they bring life and dynamics to our language. In business writing, the proper use of verbs enhances clarity and professionalism, allowing us to communicate effectively and concisely. Let’s explore why verbs are important and how to use them correctly in our everyday business communication.

Firstly, verbs function as the main components of sentences, playing the role of the predicate. They express what the subject is doing, what is happening to the subject, or what state the subject is in. For example, in the sentence “The marketing team developed a new strategy,” the verb “developed” reveals the action carried out by the subject, the marketing team. Verbs have the power to provide detailed information about events, projects, and achievements, adding depth and precision to our writing.

Moreover, verbs contribute to the overall tone and style of our communication. By selecting strong and active verbs, we can project confidence and professionalism. When writing business documents or emails, it is crucial to choose powerful verbs that accurately convey our thoughts and intentions. For instance, instead of writing “I made some changes,” consider using “I implemented some crucial modifications.” The latter not only sounds more professional but also emphasizes the significance and impact of the changes you’ve made.

Additionally, verbs allow us to express time-related information, enabling us to create clear and concise messages. By using specific tenses, such as past, present, or future, we establish a timeline of events and indicate when actions occurred or will occur. Precise verb tenses provide a better understanding of the temporal context, ensuring that our communication is accurate and unambiguous.

To make the best use of verbs in business writing, consider the following tips:

1. Be precise: Select verbs that accurately describe the intended action or state, avoiding vague language that can lead to confusion or misinterpretation.

2. Use active voice: Using active voice emphasizes the subject performing the action rather than the action itself. This makes your writing more direct and impactful. For example, instead of saying “The mistake was made,” rephrase it as “I made a mistake.”

3. Employ appropriate verb tenses: Use the correct verb tense to convey time-related information and ensure consistency throughout your writing. Consider the context and the timeline of events when choosing a tense.

4. Avoid excessive use of passive voice: Although passive voice has its place, it is often overused in business writing. Whenever possible, opt for active voice to enhance clarity and highlight accountability.

In conclusion, understanding the role of verbs is essential for effective and professional business communication. By selecting precise, powerful, and appropriate verbs, we can improve the impact, clarity, and overall quality of our writing. So, whether you’re drafting an email, composing a memo, or preparing a presentation, remember to give careful consideration to your choice of verbs and use them strategically to enhance your professional image.

Explanation of how verbs function in a sentence


Verbs are an essential part of language and play a fundamental role in constructing sentences. They are action words that express what the subject of a sentence is doing or experiencing. Understanding how verbs function in a sentence is crucial for effective communication and maintaining a professional tone.

Firstly, verbs can be categorized into two main groups: action verbs and linking verbs. Action verbs depict physical or mental actions, representing what someone or something does. Examples include “run,” “write,” “think,” or “communicate.” These verbs add dynamism and energy to sentences, enabling readers or listeners to visualize the action being performed.

Linking verbs, on the other hand, connect the subject of a sentence with a noun, pronoun, or adjective that describes or renames the subject. Common linking verbs include “is,” “are,” “am,” “was,” and “were.” They establish a relationship between the subject and other elements of the sentence, often conveying states of being, such as “She is happy” or “He became a doctor.”

Verbs also have different tenses, indicating the time at which an action occurred or will occur. The three main tenses are past, present, and future. The past tense describes actions that have already happened, such as “She baked a cake.” The present tense represents actions taking place in the present, such as “He reads a book.” The future tense signifies actions that are scheduled or expected to happen, like “They will go on a trip.”

It is important to use the appropriate verb tense to accurately express the intended meaning. Mixing tenses can create confusion and undermine the professionalism of your writing. Maintaining consistency in verb usage throughout a piece of writing is key to conveying clear and concise information.

In addition to tense, verbs can also be modified by auxiliary or helping verbs, which assist in expressing conditions or actions. These auxiliary verbs include “can,” “could,” “may,” “might,” “will,” “would,” “shall,” “should,” “must,” and “ought to.” They provide additional information about the verb and further clarify its meaning within the context of a sentence.

Finally, verbs can also be influenced by subject-verb agreement, which means that the verb must match the number and person of the subject in a sentence. For example, a singular subject requires a singular verb form, while a plural subject requires a plural verb. Correct subject-verb agreement is vital for maintaining coherence and professionalism in your writing.

In conclusion, verbs are the backbone of a sentence, bringing action, linking ideas, and conveying timeframes. By understanding how verbs function and incorporating them effectively, you can enhance the professionalism of your writing and ensure clear communication with your audience.

Examples of verbs in action

How to use a verb

In order to effectively use verbs in your writing and communication, it is essential to understand how they work in different contexts. Let’s take a look at some examples to help illustrate their usage:

1. Active Verbs: Active verbs express actions that the subject performs. They add energy to your sentences and make your writing more dynamic. For instance: – “James runs every morning to stay fit.” – “The team completed the project ahead of schedule.”

2. Linking Verbs: Linking verbs connect the subject to a word or phrase that gives more information about the subject. They do not express action but rather describe a state of being or condition. Consider these examples: – “She is a talented singer.” – “The flowers smell delightful.”

3. Transitive Verbs: Transitive verbs are action verbs that always require a direct object to complete their meaning. The direct object receives the action of the verb. Here are a couple of examples: – “He bought a new car.” – “They organized an event.”

4. Intransitive Verbs: Unlike transitive verbs, intransitive verbs do not require a direct object to complete their meaning. They express action that does not pass from the subject to any receiver. Here are a few examples: – “She danced gracefully.” – “The birds flew away.”

5. Modal Verbs: Modal verbs are auxiliaries that modify the main verb to indicate possibility, necessity, ability, or permission. Some common examples of modal verbs include: – “You should exercise regularly to maintain good health.” – “I can help you with the project.”

Remember, verbs play a crucial role in expressing actions, conditions, and states of being in your writing. By choosing the right verbs and understanding their usage, you can convey your message more effectively and make your writing shine with professionalism.

Choosing the right verb

How to use a verb

Choosing the right verb is essential in conveying a professional and impactful message. Whether you are writing an email, a report, or a presentation, using the appropriate verb can greatly enhance your communication and leave a lasting impression. Here are some key tips to help you select the right verb for any situation:

1. Be precise: Pay attention to the specific action or state you want to convey. Instead of using generic verbs like “do” or “make,” opt for more precise alternatives that accurately represent your intended meaning. For example, replace “do a presentation” with “deliver a presentation” or replace “make a decision” with “finalize a decision.” This level of precision adds clarity and professionalism to your language.

2. Consider formality: The level of formality in your writing should influence your choice of verbs. In more formal contexts, opt for strong, assertive verbs that demonstrate your confidence and expertise. For instance, instead of saying “I think we should consider,” say “I recommend we assess.” This subtle shift in language can enhance your professional image and make your writing more persuasive.

3. Avoid weak verbs: Weak verbs not only dilute the impact of your message but also create ambiguity. Instead of using vague verbs like “get,” “have,” or “go,” seek out stronger alternatives that convey intention and action. For example, replace “get a promotion” with “earn a promotion” or replace “go to a meeting” with “attend a meeting.” These stronger verbs lend credibility and professionalism to your writing.

4. Use active voice: Whenever possible, use active voice constructions instead of passive voice. Active voice highlights the doer of the action, which provides a sense of accountability and clarity. Passive voice tends to be wordier and often muddles the main message. By opting for active voice and using verbs that directly depict action, you can communicate more effectively and maintain a professional tone.

5. Maintain consistency: Consistency in your verb choices is crucial for maintaining a professional tone. Ensure that the tense, mood, and voice of your verbs align throughout your writing. Consistency establishes coherence and professionalism, making it easier for your audience to follow your thoughts and ideas.

By following these simple guidelines and paying attention to the verbs you use, you can elevate your writing and communicate in a professional and impactful manner. Remember, the right verb has the power to enhance clarity, strength, and precision in your message, making a lasting impression on your readers or listeners.

Identifying the subject of the sentence

How to use a verb

Identifying the subject of a sentence is crucial for understanding and effectively using verbs in your writing. The subject of a sentence is the noun or pronoun that performs the action or is being described by the verb. It is essential to identify the subject accurately to ensure proper verb agreement and maintain clarity in your writing.

To identify the subject of a sentence, it is necessary to ask yourself the question, “Who or what is performing the action?” The subject is usually located at the beginning of a sentence, but this is not always the case. In some sentences, the subject can come after the verb or be hidden within a longer phrase.

Here are some key tips to help you identify the subject:

1. Look for the noun or pronoun: The subject is often a noun or a pronoun. Nouns are words that represent people, places, things, or ideas, while pronouns are words that replace nouns. For example: – “John runs every morning.” (The subject is “John.”) – “They seem happy.” (The subject is “They.”)

2. Consider the verb form: The verb form can provide hints about the subject. Verbs agree with their subjects in terms of number (singular or plural). If the verb is in the third-person singular form (usually ends in -s or -es), it suggests that the subject is singular. For example: – “She sings beautifully.” (The subject is “She.”) – “The dog barks loudly.” (The subject is “The dog.”)

3. Pay attention to word order and context: The subject is typically placed before the verb in English sentences. However, word order can vary, especially in questions and exclamations. It is essential to consider the context to determine the subject accurately. For example: – “Is she going to the party?” (The subject is “she.”) – “What a beautiful day it is!” (The subject is “it.”)

4. Beware of sentences with compound subjects: A sentence can have more than one subject. When two or more subjects share the same verb, they form a compound subject. In such cases, the subjects are usually connected by words like “and” or “or.” For example: – “Amy and Jack are studying for the exam.” (The compound subject is “Amy and Jack.”)

Identifying the subject of a sentence is an essential step in using verbs correctly and constructing clear and coherent sentences. By understanding how to identify the subject accurately, you will enhance your writing skills and maintain a professional tone in your communication.

Matching the verb to the subject’s number (singular/plural)

How to use a verb

In professional writing, it is crucial to match the verb to the number of the subject in your sentences. This ensures clarity and consistency in your communication. Whether you are writing a business report, an email, or a formal document, mastering the art of subject-verb agreement will enhance the professionalism of your writing. Here are some key guidelines to follow:

1. Singular Subject, Singular Verb: When your subject is singular, your verb should also be singular. For example:

– The company is conducting a thorough analysis of the market trends. – Each employee attends the weekly team meetings.

2. Plural Subject, Plural Verb: When your subject is plural, your verb should also be plural. Here are a couple of examples:

– The executives make strategic decisions. – The employees collaborate on various projects.

3. Indefinite Pronouns: Be cautious when dealing with indefinite pronouns such as everyone, somebody, nobody, or each. These are typically treated as singular subjects, requiring singular verbs. For instance:

– Everybody needs to submit their quarterly reports by Friday. – Each team member is responsible for completing their tasks on time.

4. Collective Nouns: When using collective nouns, which refer to groups, you need to consider whether you are referring to the group as a single unit or as separate individuals. When treating the group as a single entity, use a singular verb. In contrast, when referring to the individuals comprising the group, use a plural verb. Consider the following:

– The board of directors is reviewing the financial statements. (as a single unit) – The board of directors are discussing their opinions. (individuals within the group)

Remember, subject-verb agreement is not just limited to sentence structure; it extends to verb tense as well. Stay consistent with your verb tenses, ensuring that they match the time frame of your subject.

By adhering to the rules of subject-verb agreement, you convey professionalism and attention to detail in your writing. This not only improves clarity but also enhances the overall quality and credibility of your business communications. So, next time you put pen to paper, pay close attention to the subject-verb relationship to ensure effective communication within your professional environment.

Well, there you have it. We took a deep dive into verbs and how to use them. Check out my websites if you need an English conversation teacher who can help you with grammar and speaking like a native speaker.The first website:  is for those who live in Saitama and more particular in Okegawa, Ageo, Kitamoto, Ina Town, and Shobu. If you aren’t in those areas don’t worry I have online lessons too. Please check out this website:  In our next blog post we will be taking a closer look at how to use possesives. Thanks for reading and I hope you found it helpful. Please give me a thumbs up or ii ne to say you enjoyed the article.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Hello my name is Jim. I am from Portland, Oregon in the U.S. I have three people in my family. I run two small businesses that are English related. So you can take a look at my first blog post for more details. I am new to blogging. I was told this can help with SEO for my websites. If anyone is an SEO professional that can help me at a fair price. I would be open to some offers. But, I am looking for someone who is native Japanese who can speak and write English fluently along with Japanese and knows how to increase my ranking for, and My Japanese isn’t very good. 😢