What is the usual French way for saying 'milk' of the verb, not the noun? For example, in order to say like belows to criticize a boss's greediness toward money and profits? Thanks for any input. "You blindly follow your boss's order, and for what, so they can just milk the situation for money".


2 Answers 2


Considering that the verb "milk" in English often refers to an intellectually dishonest manner in which one tries to extract the maximum financial (or otherwise) gain from a given situation over an extended period, how about:

Tu obéis à ton chef au doigt et à l'œil. Et ce, uniquement pour qu'ils puissent s'en enrichir / s'enrichir toujours plus.

I might go for « tirer le meilleur parti d'une situation » in a different context, but as you seem to be talking specifically about monetary gain here, this phrase would sound rather vague, falling short of conveying the monetary nuance.

Ideally, if I could replace « s'enrichir » with its more casual counterpart, more in keeping with the informal tone of the verb "milk".

  • S'enrichir is fine but s'en enrichir is slightly odd. Here is a couple of more casual/colloquial alternatives of s'enrichir: s'en mettre plein les poches and se gaver.
    – jlliagre
    Aug 14, 2018 at 8:15
  • @jlliagre Hi. As for "s'en enrichir", does it refer more to some enhancement in a positive sense? I wasn't sure about this, so I placed them both. If this is the case, please feel free to edit it out accordingly. :) Aug 14, 2018 at 16:12
  • No big deal. I just wouldn't have written Pour qu'ils puissent s'enrichir toujours plus de ce que tu obéisse à ton chef au doigt et à l'œil. Who is ils is also unclear.
    – jlliagre
    Aug 14, 2018 at 22:04
  • @jlliagre Ah, I see. What I had in mind (as to what "en" refers to) was more like "Pour qu'ils puissent s'enrichir toujours plus d'une situation fructueuse", supposing that the word "situation" or something similar was used in the preceding context. As for "ils/they", perhaps the OP refers to several big shots in the organisation, including the boss? Aug 14, 2018 at 22:25
  • I guess another possibility is the OP used a singular they.
    – jlliagre
    Aug 14, 2018 at 22:29

I suppose the closest French expression is “tirer profit de [la situation]”, in which “tirer” (“draw”) is used similarly to “milk”. This expression can be used in formal language. I can't remember any slang variation to it.

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