Hello. How are y'll?
Do I need "the" in front of "clients" in this sentence?
I worked very hard for clients.
Isn't it obvious without "the" that I am referring to past clients. I know it's technically called for, but don't many native speakers drop it?
I personally think "the" would make it sound like there were different kinds of clients and I am referring to a specific kind.
Please let me know what you think. I am really confused. Any comments are greatly appreicated.
Kind regards, Mr. N
It's not wrong without it, but it could imply some clients (not all), so it's better with the or our/my, etc. Of the three, I would use a personal adjective there and think it weakest with nothing.
I'd like to point out a possible ambiguity in the sentence.
I work hard for X.
That could mean I had to work hard to obtain X.
I worked hard for my A in math.
I had to spend a lot of time with leads and prospects and selling myself before they signed on to be my clients. I worked hard for my clients.
That could also mean that on their behalf, I work very hard.
When I was on the job, be assured that I worked very hard on behalf of my clients. I worked hard for my clients.
I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.