Suppose AAA is the company name I work for.

When a new person joins to the company, there will be a "buddy" assigned to him/her, and he/she will receive a letter tells what a buddy will do for him/her:

Identify issues that you needs to escalate to appropriate people in AAA

As the buddy, I found I can't understand this sentence correctly. After discussed with some colleagues, I found two explanations:

  1. I will help the new person find what he/she needs to do or to improve, so he/she can be a good employee

  2. I will help the new person to find other proper people to solve his/her problems when I can't solve it by myself

Which one is correct, or neither?

(PS: is the word needs correct in the sentence? Or should it be need?)

  • Need is correct because the subject of the verb is you. We only use needs when the subject is he.
    – JavaLatte
    Jul 7, 2016 at 7:10

1 Answer 1


Identify issues that you need to escalate to appropriate people in AAA.

Yes, it should be need.

The meaning of the phrase is that during training/orientation, there will be some issues that the two of you can't resolve. They might be technical or procedural matters, or personnel related ones. So that they can be properly addressed, it is asking you you identify those issues, and then inform the "appropriate people" (perhaps dept. heads or managers).

It is need because this has to happen when the two of you can't solve some difficulty.
escalate means to move it up the organizational chart to higher level employees.

  • "Appropriate people" would be those who are more senior to you (which would be practically anyone since you are a new hire) with more responsibility or knowledge, that is why "escalate" is used.
    – Peter
    Jul 7, 2016 at 4:32
  • @Peter The situation involves the current employee and a new hire. We don't know the level of the current employee.
    – user3169
    Jul 7, 2016 at 5:01
  • @Peter and user3169: So far, I though escalate means make or become more sever or serious, what does it mean here? I've never seen such usage.
    – Cardinal
    Jul 7, 2016 at 7:19
  • "inform them to" is ungrammatical. The direct object of inform in this usage is the person who is being told of something, but here, you're referring to the issues. The sentence wants tell or bring.
    – TimR
    Jul 7, 2016 at 12:03
  • 1
    @Cardinal Yes, but also moving up the responsibility ladder. It could be due to severity (like resolving a personnel problem) or just to a more experienced person (like when the engineer has to ask the administration manager about business issues).
    – user3169
    Jul 7, 2016 at 16:46

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