Top business Leaders and successful Managers use specific words to achieve success. They also avoid certain words and phrases.
Here are 10 phrases to stop using now:
1. “I can’t do that” or “That’s Impossible” or “That can’t be done”
These negative phrases are perceived by others as unconstructive and even stubborn. Instead say “Let me check on that for you” or “What I can do is…” Be positive is the mindset here.
2. “You should have….” or “You could have…” or “You ought to have…”
These phrases imply blame, figure pointing and fault. There is no quicker way to upset a boss, colleague or customer. Instead try these phrases in a more collaborative approach: “Please help me understand why…” I understand your challenges; let’s resolve this together…”
3. “That’s not my job” or “I don’t get paid enough for this” or That’s not my problem”
If you’re asked to do something for your boss, it’s because it’s important to them. Reply by saying, “I’ll be glad to help you accomplish that, I have been working on project A,B and C what should I put on the back burner while I work on this new item? This clearly communicates priority, reminds the boss of your current workload and subtly implies realistic expectations.
4. “I may be wrong, but…” or “This may be a dumb question, but…” or I’m not sure about this, but…” or “This may be a silly idea, but…”
Eliminate the prefacing phrase that demeans or negates what you are about to say. Drop the “but” and just make your statement. This is much more powerful.
5. “I’ll Try”
As we all heard in Star Wars from Yoda while he was training Luke Skywalker….“There is no TRY only DO” Don’t tell your boss that “You will try to get that report done by Friday.” Tell him “I’ll have that report on your desk by the end of the day Friday” The TRY is not helping you.
6. “I Think”
You can start to see the trend I’m conveying. Strong powerful language will help you get to where you want to go. Eliminate the weak wording. Which of these two statements do you find more effective? “I think you might like this new solution” or “I am confident you’re going to like this new solution” Eliminate the weak words “think” and “might” that sound unsure and undermine your credibility.
7. “… don’t you think” or “…Isn’t it?” or “…OK?”
Make your statement or recommendation with certainty and avoid tacking on the approval –seeking question. Don’t say “I think we should proceed using this new procedure, Ok?” Instead, make a declaration: “We’ll proceed using this proposed procedure”
8. “I don’t have time…”
Other than being rude and abrupt, this phrase tells the person they’re less important to you than the other things you have going on. Instead say “I’d be glad to discuss this with you. I’m working on a deadline this morning. May I stop by your office this afternoon around 3pm to discuss this with you?”
9. Another kind of “….but…”
The use of but will negate what you said prior to it. Imagine your significant other saying to you “Honey, I love you, but….” Similarly, imagine if a salesperson said “Yes, our implementation process is fast, easy and affordable… but we can’t install it until June. Replace the “but” with “and” and listen to the difference: ““Yes, our implementation process is fast, easy and affordable… and we can install it as early as June.
10. “He’s a jerk” or She’s lazy” or “This company stinks”
These negative judgments can tank a career quickly. If a genuine complaint or issue needs to be brought to someone’s attention, do so with tact and facts not your opinion on the matter. For example, when discussing a co-worker’s tardiness with your boss, don’t say “She is lazy” Instead say, “I’ve noticed Susan has been an hour late every morning this month.” This comment states an observable fact and avoids disparaging language.
Read these tips and begin practicing them. Your mindset needs to be confident and powerful not weak and submissive. Getting yourself in the correct mindset will help you choose the more powerful language!
Source: Darlene Price, author of Well Said! Presentations and Conversations That Get Results