Seven deadly "at work" phrases - Don't say these!!
The things you say at work can affect your future with the company. To that end, here are seven things you should never say at work.
1. “I Can’t Work With Her”
Instead of complaining and making yourself look bad in the process, focus on improving the relationship. Sit down with the person and have a heart-to-heart. Ask what you can do to make her work life easier. The results may be better than you think, and you could find yourself with a new ally.
2. “I Can’t Do It”
Instead of telling your boss you can’t do something because you have too much on your plate (which may lead her to think she can’t depend on you), detail your to-dos and ask for her help in prioritizing them. This strategy also works for the related no-no phrase, “I don’t have time.”
3. “That Won’t Work”
Blurting out these words shuts down all productive conversation and can make you look like the one with a bad attitude. Even if you really believe something is not possible or is a genuinely bad idea, focus on being constructive with your response rather than negative. Also, be careful of your body language. Eye rolling, sighing and sneering, for instance, communicate “that won’t work” just as loudly as words do.
4. “But So-and-so Got...”
It’s impossible to know the details of everyone else’s situations, so always speak in terms of your own experiences and needs. Be specific about what you need and why you should get it, without mentioning other people (and without using phrases like “It’s not fair!”). And try to identify potential solutions to your gripes before you approach your boss, so that it sounds like you’re problem-solving, not complaining.
5. “Guess What I Heard?”
Dishing the dirt at work is fun and nearly irresistible, especially if you’re bored or feeling unchallenged. Listen all you want, but refrain from contributing to conversations that could compromise someone’s reputation.
6. “It’s Not My Fault”
Instead of looking to place blame, be solution-oriented. Help your boss figure out what the team can do to remedy the situation so that it doesn’t escalate further. And if you had any culpability whatsoever, show that you’ve learned from the experience and will approach things differently next time.
7. “At My Last Job”
Nothing turns people off like a newbie who waltzes in and says, “Well, at my old company, we did it like this.” People will think that if things were so swell at your old company, maybe you should go back. This is the last thing you want.