All of us can remember one famous dialogue of the movie ‘The dark Knight’, “It’s not what we are from inside but it is what we do that defines us”. Totally true, isn’t it? Well the same applies to what we communicate through verbal and non-verbal communication. In many of the cases, what our intentions were and how we articulate or describe them is completely or partially different, and that makes a lot of difference in the meaning perceived from the other end.
For example, let’s consider a very simple scenario. A co-worker of yours has asked you for some help, and unfortunately, you were totally wired at that moment with your work and deliverables. There can be several ways to deny to that request including:
“Sorry, I’m totally busy at the moment.”
“I cannot help you at all at the moment.”
“Hey, I really want to help you, but the thing is I’m already running late on my deliveries and need to meet the deadline.”
Although, all of three response may imply same response, that is, denial to the request, but surely as a receiver we will take all of them in different ways. The third one will surely sound more accepting and ethical, and this is one of the reasons why phrasing your statement is very crucial and should be taken care of.
At some point, we all are new to a workplace or a fresher, right? But surely, we should avoid using such phrases and verbal styles that could make us look like a fresher. Though, you should not, in any way, sound like you are being superior to other members of your team or colleagues. But, again, your years of experience in the workplace or industry or looks as in beard should not append at all in your verbal or non-verbal communication.
On the basis to the situation, we have prepared few of the phrases that you should totally avoid to make yourself sound less experienced than you are.
1. ‘I have to ask my boss’
Though, it is true that in corporate world, or in any team work, there is always one leader, or so-called Boss, and it is advisable to ask for his/her opinion/permission before making a decision. But, again, that relying on your boss for the decision should not appear in your communication language.
Even the CEO’s of companies are required to ask their board of directors before taking few of the decisions, but surely that don’t make them sound like they are not the one in the lead or cannot make any final decision. So, rather of using phrases like ‘I have to ask my boss’, try, ‘Sounds great! Let me have a quick talk with couple of people on our team to come down to a mutual agreeable decision.’
Not just, it will sound more formal, it will show the importance of the team effort and your alliance with it.
2. ‘I don’t know’
True, not everyone knows everything, but again, there’s no point in depicting your knowledge bank and their limitations to someone in just one phrase like ‘I don’t know’.
Including such a phrase will not only demonstrate the absence of your answers, but it can also make others feel like you are not truly interested and up to the requirement. Instead of ‘I don’t know’, there are lot of alternatives which can be inserted like mentioning the part of the answers or bringing concerned person in the loop who can spot the complete solution to the question.
3. ‘Don’t mention your ‘junior’ title in your pitch’
At some point of our career, we all were/are associates or trainee or junior on our job title. But that doesn’t imply at all that we have to mention the complete job title to anyone in e-mail or during verbal communication with one of colleagues at the workplace.
The moment you place your junior title during the conversation, you can lose the effectiveness and influence of your further conversation. Though, it may not sound true in every case, but it does happen. For example, at the workplace, mentioning your low-level job-title may get you lose your words effectiveness and importance at some-point (This is not true always, but there are probable chances that they may take your very lightly).
Let’s consider a simple scenario of you writing an email to a potential customer of yours regarding their one concern with the organization. You may write, ‘I’m a Jr. customer support at organization xyz which will make you sound less experienced. Rather, you may write, I’m Mr ‘John Doe’ from the customer support team and..’, this way you make yourself belong to a team without mentioning your job title and standpoint in the organization.
4. Avoid using unnecessary adverbs like ‘very’, ‘incredibly’, ‘extremely’
In social world, we do make use of these adverbs at all the time to show our excitement and expressions, and no wonder, they works great, but not in the professional/business world.
In professional world, all we should communicate about is the fact, and a fact never does require such adverbs at all. For example, let’s say your organization is hosting an event for core team members and have sent an email regarding conformation of your presence during the same. Now, you may response in two ways:
Hi, I’m incredibly eager to attend the session. But unfortunately, I’m totally wired up with work.
Or, Hi, I’m interested in attending the session, but I have some deadlines to meet.
The second response is simply stating the fact that you would be unavailable as you are busy with your work. And, so does imply the 1st response, but the use of adverbs clearly states our expressions and makes it way more multiplex.
5. ‘Hi, I’m Winny’
Communication is all about taking care of your audience. One sentence may seem perfectly fine in one context, but may make you feel awkward in another situation. Addressing yourself with the first name among your social circle is completely agreeable and goes well, but in case of business meeting and introduction, it will not bring a positive influence of yours among others.
Addressing yourself with the first name makes you sound incomplete and resemble like someone who has just entered in the halfway. Instead, try introducing yourself with complete details like, ‘Hi, I’m Winny from the advertising team and…’
Here’s the difference: This will give your audience and other colleagues and authorities a complete introduction of yours along with your credibility to jump in to the conversation.
6. Minimizing the use of words like ‘I’ and ‘Me’
It is always advised to keep a check on your personal thoughts and opinions in any professional conversation, agree? The same logic also applies in many other cases.
‘I would be genuinely interested in meeting one to one with you to take the discussion further; makes you sound more anxious and desperate to meet or make the deal.
Instead, ‘It would be great if we can meet one to one to take our discussion further’ makes you sound calm and professional.
7. ‘I will be available at whatever time suits you’
Does not sound okay at all, right? There are probable chances that you are free and don’t have much schedules on your calendar, but, the sentence will only make you sound less experienced.
Rather you may try saying, ‘Post-lunch tomorrow is fine with me, though I’m happy to be flexible’ imply the same meaning as being available at someone’s else time. Actually, this make you sound more professional and also shows that you have your planned schedules but you are ready to make some adjustments in between.
8. ‘Hoping to hear back from you’
This happens especially in case of E-mails where closures are really important. Though, you want to hear back from the other person and that’s all you want to convey with message, but it is not really effective. Instead, one can write, ‘I will look forward to….’. In professional world, hoping a thing does not make that happen at all.
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