"Das Personal ist zufrieden."

Translation:The staff is satisfied.

December 30, 2013



'The staff IS satisfied' sounds odd in English. You would say 'The staff MEMBER is satisfied' for singular, or 'The staff ARE satisfied' for plural.

August 9, 2016


Actually, I find "is" to be more natural than "are". "Staff" is both the plural and the singular. I conceive of it much as "group" or "class". So while there are multiple people that comprise the staff, I treat it grammatically as a single unit.

Thus, "the class/group/staff is attending a seminar."

That said, I don't find it odd to treat staff as a plural either. I would (actually did) use "the staff are satisfied." I would, however, find "the group are satisfied" to be unnatural.

Regional convention at play here.

September 14, 2016


I am native English (UK). Staff is a group of persons, unless toubare talking about a pole. I would suggest if you where talking about an individual you would use "staff member". I always associate Staff with a group. I can say "I am staff". As a short cut to "I am a staff member". Word always flags "are staff" as grammatically wrong, but I guess it is refering to "a staff" which is a pole

August 12, 2017


"Staff" certainly indicates a group of people, but that says nothing about it being singular or plural. "Swarm" is a group of insects but it is definitely a singular noun, even "group" indicates a plurality of things but is grammatically singular. This is just a matter of UK vs US usage: American English only allows singular agreement for collective nouns (like "team", "family", "staff", etc.), while British English contemplates (or even prefers) plural forms.

As an aside "are staff" may be colloquial, but it's correctness has nothing to do with the grammatical number of staff, because in English the verb number is determined by the subject, so "my friends are staff" but "my friend is staff", irrespective of whether "staff" is plural or singular and only dependent on the number of "friend".

August 12, 2017


Both British and American English use notional and grammatical agreement, although we use it more often in British English. With staff it depends on whether we want to emphasise the group or the members of the group.

Examples: - Midland, whose staff is 56% female... - the staff are happier


March 18, 2019


I did not know that American English accepted notional agreement at all. Thanks.

May 14, 2019


Du hast total recht. Gut gesagt.

March 18, 2019


Is the sound of Personal right?

I check it in my electric dectionary, it shows me [pɛrzo:na:l] and google translation reads it like this, too, while DL reads it differently in all three vowels, like [pə:sənl].

Or it can be read in both ways?

February 20, 2014


No, it can't be read in both ways, it is actually how your electric diary and google translation say.

June 12, 2016


no it isn´t i am a native german speaker and the sound of personal is very strange the stress is on the a.

May 31, 2017


The computer voice here saying "Personal" is nearly incomprehensible. Sounds like it's been tied in a knot and dragged through autotune.

July 5, 2014


Listen to Höher! The system approves every word you say with an apple in your mouth and that's what it's sounds like.

May 9, 2019


Surely crew should only be used in a nautical context.. There's a whole unwritten chapter of the inferno reserved for any manager or business owner who even considers referring to their employees as 'crew'

February 12, 2015

  • 1580

It's common for the leader of a group of workers to refer to that group as a crew. "I have a good crew" is definitely not an uncommon sentence, at least here in Texas. While I agree that a manager or business owner should not refer to his/her employees (with which he/she does not directly form a team) as his/her crew, it is quite common.

June 30, 2015


The use of the double negative is also fairly common, but still wrong and still sounds terrible. However, I accept that "crew" might be accepted in some parts of the English-speaking world. Anyone who were to use it in the UK would be mocked for trying to sound gangsta ;)

July 3, 2015

  • 1580

I only said it's common; I didn't say it was right. I hate the whole "gangsta" mentality (I actually feel a little sick from even typing the word) and I'm happy that there are people that make fun of those that feel the need to behave that way. Sadly, it seems America is becoming more and more infested every second by people with that immature and offensive attitude. It's one of those things that just needs to go away. Well, enough off-topic-ness.... Fellow Duo-ers, please don't use the word "crew" to refer to your employees.

July 3, 2015


In the late 80's, my first "real" job was at a Wendy's (fast-food hamburger restaurant). We had a "crew chief", implying that the rest of us were "crew". Cf. "gang" in the context of "railroad gangs" or "work gangs".

September 14, 2016


Crew came to distinguished from staff, work force etc. to denote the fact that the particular work force was assembled for a specific task. On completion of the task they were usually released from normal duties.

A good example is a ship's crew, a team assembled for the operation of the ship. As the complexity of the operating a ship increase, the number of people permanently attached to the ship increased so as to maintain the requisite competency. Even though modern ships' crews are attached to a specific ship for an extended period they are still regarded as employed for that specific purpose.

Originally, a voyage could take a year or more and often only a third of the crew survived. Upon completion of the voyage the ship and remaining crew were in such poor condition that neither were able to put to sea again. Ships were rebuilt but crews discarded. Coastal shipping trips were much shorter but generally crews were dismissed upon completion of even short trips.

Any work force contracted for a specific task and then not paid until the next task is likely to be referred to as a crew. This includes flight crew, delivery crews, clean up crews etc. Or if they are permanently employed but can expect to be assigned dramatically different tasks at totally different locations at the whim of the employer, they can expect to regarded as a crew.

June 25, 2016


could you use "happy" here?

May 31, 2014


Similar, but not quite the same. You can be content/satisfied without being happy.

September 14, 2016


"Personal" mispronunciation reported !!

September 11, 2014


zufrieden = zu + frieden?

October 20, 2014


Genau. At peace ==> content, satisfied.

September 14, 2016


I can understand your question. Even I am trying to find a good answer from some one in order to remember it. Danke dir!

January 26, 2015


Someone can explain me this: because of Das, I wrote THIS crew, and duo marked bad, it was THE crew...why?? When this, and when the

August 14, 2015


Das schould always be translated into the while this and that are demonstrative pronouns as much as they are in German. This - dies , that - jenes, These - diese, those - jene

June 17, 2016


Hello Duo, if you're listening (which I doubt you are, anymore). When I translate your sentences it is, many times, easy. I look at the alternative pick of answers & pick the one that makes sense, & I get it right. An idea for you. Challenge you customers here or open other site that does. I do like this & still am using it. Don't get angry.

August 19, 2016


why is " the employee is satisfied ", wrong? Is ' das Personal ' plural?

April 14, 2017


Das Personal is singular (as described in the Wikipedia). It refers to the whole group. I suppose there could be only one person employed to run an office, in which case the staff/personnel consists of only one person, but normally das Personal is going to be several people.

April 14, 2017


this is an interesting sentence word in both German and English. It would be nice if somebody could perhaps show some working examples and also perhaps what they could possibly mean.

December 30, 2013


Personal is an uncountable (i.e. always in singular) way of saying "all employees (of a company)". So for example, if everyone working in a restaurant (waiters, cooks, pretty much everyone but the manager) is happy with their job/life/circumstances/whatever then you could use this statement.

December 30, 2013


NB: "Personal" is a noun auf Deutsch which is translated to "personnel" or "staff" in English; whereas in English, "personal" is an adjective. (In this context, "personal" is an adjective. It can be a noun when referring to a type of advertisement.)

May 18, 2017


The narrator clearly says "personnel" not "Personal". It should be corrected!

June 19, 2014


the personal is satisfied \ what is wrong?

December 23, 2014

  • 1580

If you had written "personnel" it would have been correct

June 30, 2015


As a native speaker of English, whilst it may be grammatically correct, I can't imagine anyone actually saying this. You would say "the workforce is satisfied" or something similar.

January 13, 2015


In the UK we say 'the staff are satisfied' unless the staff consists of one person. I hope the statements in German are more accurate.

November 3, 2018


Yes, as "satisfied" is a human sentiment we're talking about the individuals and in British English should use notional agreement.

Americans tend to prefer formal agreement, but still use notional agreement at times.

March 3, 2019


I listened to this like twelve times, didn't figure out it was saying "Personal" :( Heartbreaker, you are, Duo.

September 6, 2014


This is very poor English! Think it should be ... are satisfied

May 17, 2017


This discussion on collective nouns has been very common here on duolingo, but the bottom line is: no it shouldn't. From a prescriptivist point of view it is debatable whether it may be right, and then only in British English. From a descriptivist standpoint―which I favour―both are in use in British English, with the singular structure used to emphasise "unity" of the group; American English, instead, largely prefers the singular, but some leeway is possible (I have honestly never heard a sentence like "my family are doing fine" from any American speaker yet, but I have heard some accounts).

June 8, 2017


I like it

October 23, 2016


In the begging of the lesson the words lists is: "Verfasser, Betreiber, Entwickler, personal, Empfänger, " Shouldn't that be Personal since it's a noun? I've reported it.

February 3, 2017


Not correct English; it should be the staff ARE not IS

November 25, 2017


It's... not that simple.
Please read my comment above.

November 25, 2017


Yes staff is plural and it should read : The staff are satisfied. Staff is a collective noun.

January 9, 2019


In the U.S.--like it or not, that's the English dialect which die Eule has decided to standardize on--"staff" is often used as a if it were singular in number. Collective nouns can be used as either singular or plural, depending on the context, so identifying "staff" as a collective noun does not mean it must be used as if it were plural.

January 10, 2019


Actually, that's formally true (if not in everyday speech) also in British English: for example, go look at the OED definition of ‘staff’ and it will say “treated as singular or plural” in brackets (at least in those acceptations of ‘staff’ that are collective nouns). The same can be said for other collective nouns like ‘family’, ‘team’, ‘board (of directors, etc.)’, and so on.

January 10, 2019
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