Communication is one of the most important things in the entire world. No matter what situation we are placed in, it would likely be impossible without it. To be efficient in anything requires good communication skills. It is the only way to build relationships.
In order to communicate properly, you have to focus on yourself and the people you are talking to. You have to think about the affect of the string or words you choose. Some phrases can be offensive, or just work against you completely, even if you didn’t mean it that way.
Here are a few phrases that you should always avoid while in a leadership role if possible:
1. “I’m not sure”
This phrase seems pretty harmless, but think about what you are really communicating when you say those words. You are portraying uncertainty and a lack of confidence. Not only does this make you seem weak in a leadership role, but you are also setting examples for others around you that it is OK to be uncomfortable with your knowledge and respond to people with uninformed opinions. And that… is not OK!
2. “Honestly speaking…”
Think about it. When you say “Honestly speaking” before you say something, you are basically telling people that you do not always speak honestly. This makes people wonder what you might be hiding. Always be confident and honest when you speak.
3. “So sorry”
This is just one of those phrases that is completely overused. There is always a time and a place to be sorry and to apologize, but after saying “so sorry” so many times, it kind of comes off as insincere and lazy. If you have to apologize, at least try to sound real about it.
This word is always ranked as one of the most overused words in the entire English language. And actually, there are very few times, if any, that the word “literally” even needs to be used at all. Don’t be “that guy”.
You don’t want to sound like a Valley girl. There are always times when the word “like” actually needs to be used, like when you are comparing something to something else. But recently it has turned into a word that we use as a placeholder. It is almost the same thing as saying “Ummm”. And you don’t want to sound insecure about what you are saying. You wouldn’t say “Umm” in a professional setting, so be mindful of how you use “Like”.
6. “I’ll try”
This one should be a no brainer. If you are in a leadership role, you didn’t get there by trying. If you are trying to get into a leadership role, you never will if all you can do is try. We don’t try, we do. And when we say “I’ll try”, it makes you sound uncertain in your own abilities. This doesn’t make anyone believe in you, so just remember that.
7. “Do you get what I’m saying?”
This one is a little tricky because it can go multiple ways. BUT, neither way is good. In one way, it can sound like you are talking down to whoever you are talking with, like they are too stupid to understand what you are saying. In another way, it can sound like you are not confident in your own communication skills. Instead of asking if they get what you are saying, try and ask questions that will further the conversation.
If all else fails, just think about what you are saying. Use the filters in your brain, and use common sense.
Content originally published here