Words of the Week – throw a wrench into


Throw a wrench into…(image: HVargas)

To throw a wrench into something (e.g. the plan, the system, the idea) means to introduce a problematic variable into the equation. This term is often used in an almost apologetic manner as in, “I don’t mean to throw a wrench into the plan, but we can’t shoot that television spot in July because our model is booked for the entire month!”

Author: Grayson Leverenz

Grayson Leverenz founded MBA in the USA® to help international students build networks, find jobs, and have fun in the USA. Hundreds of global professionals have benefited from Grayson’s intercultural workshops, and she has worked with people from Brazil, China, India, South Africa, South Korea, the UK, and the USA to build effective virtual teams and craft brilliant careers.

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1 Comment

  1. In a British context to “put a spanner in the works” means to stop something completely [because the gears in the machine can no longer rotate when an obstruction is present] – this would not be an understated “problematic variation”.

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