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Common errors > staff  noun [normally, singular only]

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Incorrect or non-standard usage, overuse etc.

I spoke to your staff on the phone.
He is a staff in an insurance company.
 

The problem

The word staff usually means all of the people employed by an organization. You cannot say 'one staff'.

When you want to refer to one person who works for an organization you can say, 'a member of staff' or 'one of the staff.'

Special uses

In the armed forces, the staff means a group of higher-ranking officers who advise the commanding officer.

Standard English

I spoke to one of your staff on the phone.
I spoke to a member of your staff on the phone.
He works for an insurance company.


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