How would you describe someone who is quick to understand or make decisions?


Quick: intelligent and able to understand things quickly.

Shiv was very quick and hard working. So he learnt his job at the factory in no time.

Sharp: someone who is sharp understands things very quickly, so it is difficult to deceive or confuse them.

She’s too sharp to be fooled by your lies.

Quick-witted: able to understand things quickly and to answer people in an intelligent way.

Throughout his career in public service, he proved himself a quick-witted negotiator.

Wise: a wise person makes good decisions and gives good advice, because they have a lot of experience in life. This is particularly used for older people.

Ali didn’t like what he was hearing but he was wise enough to keep his thoughts to himself.


How would you describe someone who’s clever at dealing with people and situations?


Clever: intelligent in a practical way, and able to use your intelligence to get advantages for yourself.

They won the case by being clever and hiring influential lawyers to help them.

Shrewd: a shrewd person is good at deciding what people, situations etc are really like, so that it is difficult to deceive them. This is particularly used for people who are successful in business.

As a shrewd businessman he was quick to spot his chance.

Astute: someone who is astute easily understands why people behave in a particular way, why a situation is happening etc. without anyone having to tell them.

The union leader’s analysis of the strike proved how astute he was.

Canny: one who is very clever, especially in business. So it’s very difficult to deceive them and they are generally able to get advantage of others.

A canny person never misses an opportunity.

Resourceful: clever at finding ways to handle problems or difficult situations using whatever material, information etc. is available.

The supervisor’s resourceful ways even in hard times made her instantly popular with the inmates of the orphanage.

Streetwise/street-smart: someone who has a lot of experience of life in big cities so that they know what to do in difficult or dangerous situations.

The kids in the movie ‘Slumdog millionaire’ are all portrayed to be streetwise.