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Avoid Using These Phrases

March 16, 2010
by Scott Levitt ·  

Communication Upgrade: Two Phrases You Should Avoid
Learn to say tough things a smarter way…

Productive communication is a skill you can develop to help smooth relationships, build trust, and overcome challenges. Here are two phrases you should avoid saying and effective alternatives:

Phrase #1 to Avoid:

Bad: “That’s not really my job.” / “That’s not something I handle.”

Good: “I’m not sure that should be my priority right now.” (Then follow-up with a conversation as to why.)

Reason: If you’re asked to do something, either by your boss or a client, telling them it’s “not your job” is a surefire way to broadcast that you’re simply unwilling to help them. If you don’t know how to do the task requested, or it’s truly beyond your ability, you need to have a conversation that helps them reach their desired goal without shutting them down.

Phrase #2 to Avoid:

Bad: “This might sound crazy / stupid / lame / like a bad idea, but…”

Good: “I have an idea I’d like your opinion on.”

Reason: Don’t set the stage for a suggestion to fail before it’s been considered. If the idea is worth sharing, it’s worth sharing confidently. If you present your perspectives with confidence, you’re more likely to have an honest conversation about your ideas. This, in turn, increases the value of your input to clients and co-workers.

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One Response to “Avoid Using These Phrases”
  1. Adrian says:

    Good advice for any situation really, not just for agents!

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