Writing about the Company Where You Work—Which Pronoun Do You Use?

Syllabus Translation MontrealSometimes I don’t know which pronoun to use when I’m talking about where I work. “It”? “They”? Neither sounds right all the time. The way Grammar Girl breaks it down is nice and easy. According to her, it’s a matter of people vs. entities.

When you’re talking about people, that is, the ones making the decisions and taking action, use “who” and “they.”

For example:
The employees, who are raising money to fight cancer, will be holding a fun run this weekend. They hope to raise $5,000.

But when you’re talking about the company as an entity, use “it” and “that” because the company isn’t actually alive and doing anything.

For example:
Syllabus is a fantastic company that treats its employees well. It’s great place to work!

That said, most often, when you’re writing about a company, you’re writing about the place where you work. In the push to make companies appear more human and less corporate, especially on the Web, it’s become commonplace to simply use “we,” “us,” and “our.”

When you want to draw a distinction between the company and the people who work there, while remaining friendly and personal, try something like the following:

At Syllabus, we love working with words!

© Michael Brown – Fotolia.com

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