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turn on a dime


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10:06 Aug 11, 2000
English to French translations [Non-PRO]
English term or phrase: turn on a dime
Texte sur le e-business
Contexte :
Simply put, an E-Business application infrastructure ultimately yields sustained E-Business agility. As a result, your organization can turn on a dime, continually reinvent itself, and deliver new innovations to market faster than your competition.

J'ai davantage besoin d'une explication que d'une tradcution proprement dite. Merci

Summary of answers provided
nasee below
Nikki Scott-Despaigne
naSe tourner sur un dix sousPauline Côté
natourner sur un dix sousLouise Atfield
nasee below
John Garside



35 mins
see below

"turn on a dime" is an expression which means, particularly in this context, the abiliity to react quickly to a given situation.

I hope this is a help to you

John Garside
Local time: 13:47
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in FrenchFrench
PRO pts in pair: 61
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8 hrs
tourner sur un dix sous

I think that the expression, in this context, means that the organization can very quickly change direction in response to a changing market or changing trend or whatever change it faces. It can turn around faster than anyone else to take advantage of sudden opportunities.

It can be translated litterally by "tourner sur un dix sous"

An example, from the paper "Le Devoir" : «S'il est capable de tourner sur un dix sous dans l'espace de sept jours, ceux et celles pour qui l'incertitude est une source d'anxiété dans leur vie savent
très bien qu'il peut faire exactement la même chose dans les sept prochains jours. (

Louise Atfield
PRO pts in pair: 577
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18 hrs
Se tourner sur un dix sous

Au Québec, le langage populaire a emprunté cette expression.
On entend aussi "se virer sur un dix cents" qui est une variante
de cette expression.

La pièce de dix sous (dime) est la plus petite de nos pièces
de monnaie. Donc littéralement, se tourner sur un dix sous
demande agilité, rapidité et habileté puisque la marge de
manoeuvre est très petite. Ça demande donc de très bons réflexes.
Il faut être vif et aux aguets.

Imagine-toi tourner sur la plus petite pièce de monnaie de ton
pays, ce serait digne de mention, n'est-ce pas?

Blague à part, dans le contexte de ta phrase, ce serait de répondre
aux besoins de tes clients peu importe les besoins (même si ceux-ci
te laissent très peu de marge de manoeuvre).

Voilà, j'espère que ça t'aidera.


Pauline Côté
Local time: 13:47
Native speaker of: French
PRO pts in pair: 88
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3 days2 hrs
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In British English, we say "turn on a sixpence". These no longer exist but I've seen dimes and they're really small too!

The GB version of this expression is often used to refer to flexibility and precision. A car can be said to be capable of turning on a sixpence. Power steering came well after the disappearance of the sixpence!

In a nutshell, this simply extends the previous sentence which is all about business agility. If you feel the French translation works given by previous answerers and that it can be understood in the style of the text you are working on, then why not? Otherwise, stick to something along the lines of "souple" or a synonym.

Bon courage.


Nikki Scott-Despaigne
Local time: 19:47
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 882
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