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a fast worker

One who is able to navigate a complicated, nuanced, or difficult situation in order to gain an advantage for themselves. A figurative use of the phrase's literal meaning, "one who is able to work quickly." Promoted to manager in less than half a year? My, he's a fast worker, isn't he? But the actress is a fast worker, deftly maneuvering through the more emotionally charged material to give her character an immediate presence in the film.
See also: fast, worker

bad workers always blame their tools

proverb If someone performs a job or task poorly or unsuccessfully, they will usually lay the blame on the quality of their equipment, or other such external factors, rather than take responsibility for their own failure. The football player blamed the overinflated ball for costing his team the game, but as they say, bad workers always blame their tools.
See also: always, bad, blame, tool, worker

black-collar worker

Someone who tends to wear black clothing and, typically, is employed in a creative field. The term is formed on the model of "blue-collar" and "white-collar." Honestly, the black-collar workers employed by that designer really intimidate me—they just seem so cool!
See also: worker

blue-collar worker

A member of the working class, especially manual laborers. The phrase refers to the collar of a laborer's typical uniform, in contrast to the "white collar" shirts that typically accompany formal dress. I come from a family of blue-collar workers, so I will always champion the common man's concerns. Blue-collar workers have always been an important part of our economy.
See also: worker

white-collar worker

A professional whose work responsibilities do not include manual labor (i.e., like that of a so-called blue-collar worker). The name comes from the formal dress typically worn by such workers. One of the problems is that we have too many white-collar workers, when what we need are more highly skilled blue-collar workers.
See also: worker
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

a fast ˈworker

(informal) a person who wastes no time in gaining an advantage, especially a person who can quickly gain somebody’s affection: She’s a fast worker! She’s only been here a few days and already the boss has invited her for dinner!
See also: fast, worker
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

black-collar workers

n. people, usually affected, who wear black all the time. (Contrived. A play on white-collar and blue-collar workers.) I hate to go over to the gallery. It’s filled with black-collar workers. Reminds me of the Adams Family.
See also: worker
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
The private sector workers reached 1,318,760 (including 30,111 female workers; in addition to 1,288,649 male workers) by the end of last July.
The largest number of expatriate workforces are working in the private sector with a number that reached 1,294,490 (including 30,281 female workers, in addition to 1,264,209 male workers.
This enormous megaphone of unchallenged opinion has partially succeeded in convincing Americans that without continued access to millions of foreign workers, America's economy will wither on the vine, and that the best way to stop illegal immigration is to pass guest-worker legislation.
Disability insurance is quickly becoming one of those top-of-mind concerns for mature workers. Many fear, however, these individuals lack adequate coverage, and that's opening the door for insurers and employers to step in to meet those needs.
The report also found that 47 percent of all building industry workers were born abroad.
In addition, most WC laws provide benefits for dependents of those workers who are killed because of work-related accidents, and limit both the amount of recovery from an employer and liability of co-workers in most work-related accidents.
During the latter period radical black unions emerged, and large integrated unions responded by opening leadership posts to moderate blacks and developing training and apprenticeship programs that gave some black workers upward mobility.
This spring, his first book, The Disposable American, appeared, expanding on his series, describing how massive layoffs hurt individual workers, their families, their companies and their communities.
Keywords: male blue-collar workers, gender role expectation, masculinity, socioeconomic status, health determinants
"How do I ensure that New Orleans is not overrun by Mexican workers?" the Mayor asked in early November.
The researchers identified 46,768 dry-cleaning and laundry workers from the 1970 censuses in the four countries.
Two economists, Giovanni Peri of the University of California at Los Angeles and Gianmarco Ottaviano of the University of Bologna, compared the growth in the percentage of immigrant workers with the change in the average wages of native-born workers in the 86 largest U.S.
Until 2004, Massachusetts followed guidelines set by the Internal Revenue Code and applicable regulations to decide whether workers were employees or contractors.
From the outset, Celanese demanded health care cuts and changes in the workers' pension.
Commissioner (TC Summary Opinion 2005-57), the court considered whether certain workers' compensation benefits were taxable as if they were Social Security benefits.
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