shift Meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary Cambridge dictionaries logo

Meaning of “shift” in the English Dictionary

"shift" in British English

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shiftverb

uk   us   /ʃɪft/
  • shift verb (MOVE/CHANGE)

C1 [I or T] to (​cause something or someone to) ​move or change from one ​position or ​direction to another, ​especiallyslightly: She shifted (her ​weight) ​uneasily from one ​foot to the other. The ​wind is ​expected to shift (to the ​east) ​tomorrow.C1 [I] (of an ​idea, ​opinion, etc.) to change: Society's ​attitudes towards women have shifted ​enormously over the last ​century. Media ​attention has shifted ​recently ontoenvironmentalissues. [T] mainly US (UK usually change) to ​move the gears of a ​vehicle into different ​positions in ​order to make it go ​faster or ​slower: In ​cars that are ​automatics, you don't have to ​bother with shifting gears.shift house Indian English to ​leaveyourhome in ​order to ​live in a new one; movehouse

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Phrasal verbs

shiftnoun

uk   us   /ʃɪft/
  • shift noun (GROUP)

B2 [C, + sing/pl verb] a ​group of ​workers who do a ​job for a ​period of ​time during the ​day or ​night, or the ​period of ​time itself: As the night shift ​leave/​leaves, the day shift ​arrive/​arrives. Are you on the night shift or the day shift? (= Do you ​work during the ​nightperiod or the ​dayperiod?)

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  • shift noun (CHANGE)

C1 [C] a change in ​position or ​direction: a shift in the ​wind/​temperature The shift in the ​balance of ​power in the ​region has had ​far-reachingconsequences. There has been a dramatic shift inpublicopinion towardspeacefulnegotiations.

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  • shift noun (DRESS)

[C] a ​simpledress that ​hangsstraight from the ​shoulders
(Definition of shift from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"shift" in American English

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shiftverb [I/T]

 us   /ʃɪft/
  • shift verb [I/T] (MOVE OR CHANGE)

to ​changedirection or move from one ​person, ​position, or ​place to another: [I] The ​wind shifted to the ​east. [T] She shifted her ​weight from one ​foot to the other. [T] He ​tried to shift the ​blame onto his ​sister. If you shift ​youremphasis or ​attitude, you ​change it: [T] Our ​attention has shifted from ​baseball to the ​election. When you shift the ​gears of a ​vehicle, you move them into different ​positions to ​change the ​speed of the ​vehicle.

shiftnoun [C]

 us   /ʃɪft/
  • shift noun [C] (PERIOD)

the ​period that a ​person is ​scheduled to ​work, or a ​group of ​workers who ​work during the same ​period of ​time: I’m ​working the ​day shift this ​month. The ​night shift is ​finished at 7 a.m.
  • shift noun [C] (MOVE OR CHANGE)

a ​change in ​position or ​direction: There’s been a ​substantial shift in ​doctors’ ​methods.
(Definition of shift from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"shift" in Business English

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shiftverb

uk   us   /ʃɪft/
[T] to ​move something to a different ​place or ​position: shift sth to sth They shifted the ​money to another ​account.shift sth out of sth Rising ​costsforced them to shift ​manufacturingwork out of ​Europe.
[I or T] to ​change an ​opinion, ​idea, etc.: shift ​focus/emphasis/​attentionshift (sth) away from sth They have shifted the emphasis of the ​business away from traditional ​manufacturing. shift (sth) towards sth The ​company has shifted towards a more ​flexiblemarketingmix. HR have shifted their ​position on ​overtimeworking and this will no ​longer be encouraged.
[T] informal COMMERCE to ​manage to ​sellgoods: At that ​time, Sony had shifted 30 million Playstation3 consoles since ​launch. The ​salesprojections were over-optimistic and ​left them with $100 million of ​stock they couldn't shift.

shiftnoun

uk   us   /ʃɪft/
[C] HR, WORKPLACE an ​agreedperiod of ​time during the day or night when particular ​employeeswork, in a ​factory, hospital, etc.: He worked an 8 hour shift at the hospital.begin/end your shift They begin their shift at 4pm.
[C] HR, WORKPLACE the ​group of ​workers who ​work at a particular ​time: the day/night/late shift We ​work until 8am, when the day shift ​takes over.
[C, usually singular] a ​movement or ​change in something: a shift in sth There's been a ​major shift in ​strategy.a shift away from/towards sth The shift towards ​specialisation favours ​smallerfirms.
[U] IT on a ​computerkeyboard, a ​key that ​changes the ​letter, ​number, or ​symbol that would ​normally appear when you ​press another ​key at the same ​time: Press shift to ​capitalizeletters.
(Definition of shift from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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“shift” in Business English

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