Top floor, please! 你会电梯游说吗?

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Vocabulary: Work (informal) 词汇:职场用语(非正式)

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Image caption Are you ready for your elevator pitch?

Have you ever been in a lift with the big cheese in your company? It happened to me a couple of times. And did I take advantage of the situation to deliver my elevator pitch? Not a chance. He was surrounded by people buttering him up all the way to the top floor!

Lifts have an interesting history. Today, the more important you are, the higher you live or work. Penthouses have fantastic views for boardrooms and living rooms. But it hasn't always been that way. Before the days of lifts, richer people would often prefer to live on the ground floor. Poorer people lived on the upper floors – and they had to use the stairs.

In any case, whatever your pay grade, the confined space of a lift makes for an awkward encounter. It's hard not to notice the uneasiness of a group of strangers in a confined space who have no time to develop any kind of bond. But if marketing people have their way, that's all going to change.

Jason Whale, sales manager at Elevators Ltd, says: "It's a very anxious experience the time you spend in a lift. If you have things around you, you take away that awkwardness. We all look at our phones sometimes or look down at the floor. Well, surely it's better to look at advertisements on the walls..."

He sees a lot of potential in this box in which we spend a few minutes every day. Whale explains: "As technology becomes slimmer and cheaper, there are so many different ways to enhance a lift with light boxes, with moving images, with television screens! It becomes quite exciting for us, and hopefully a little bit more interesting for the people who use lifts."

Who knows what the lifts of the future will look like? Perhaps they will become the places where everybody wants to be. Time for a business meeting? Ready to party? Come on everybody, let's get into the lift!