Could you please let me know if the following excerpt of a sentence is grammatically correct (specifically the preposition after "effort"):

"Should there be anything that you feel we are missing, your insight would be invaluable to our effort in improving our products(...)"

An explanation on why it is/isn't correct would also be highly appreciated. Prepositions are tough. :(


The preposition 'in' is perfectly fine in the way you have used it. However the sentence as a whole, though grammatically correct, reads a little clumsily. My own way of saying much the same thing would be as below. Note especially that I have changed 'insight' to 'feedback, the more usual word for customer comments. 'Insight' is used more as regards professional opinions.

'If you have any comments you wish to make on our products or service, your feedback would be invaluable to our continuing efforts to improve'.

  • Thank you for reworking the sentence. I agree that it sounds more natural that way. I'll still keep "insight", as I've already used "feedback" at the end of the previous sentence. But correcting my style is useful to me, because I seem to be having trouble with working out what sounds more natural when read by native speakers. – Philip Feb 5 '14 at 16:49

I suspect there's been an unconscious inversion of 'in our efforts to improve'.

It's a phrasal verb that fits into a 'desires are containers' model, of which other examples are 'in our desire to do x', 'in our need for x', 'in our wish to do x', etc.

See Rudzka-Ostyn, p 57, for a near equivalent.

  • In the Google books version I found: books.google.bg/… page 54 details the literal/spacial use of "in"... Thanks for the recommendation, though, I'll look through the book, but if you could narrow it down for me that would be great... – Philip Feb 5 '14 at 16:41
  • Number 2.6 - IN: psychological, physical states viewed as containers. – Leon Conrad Feb 5 '14 at 16:47
  • I won't be able to find it, apparently, because pages 57/58 are not available in the preview. But I think I got the idea and... yes, I guess "in our efforts to improve" sounds better. – Philip Feb 5 '14 at 16:57

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.