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When asked, avoid these 5 answers

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in Workplace Communication

Stop yourself before saying any of these words, which can make you sound noncommittal, undependable or untrustworthy:

1. “Try.” Your intentions may be noble, but in saying you’ll “try” to do something, others may think you’re just paying lip service.

2. “I’ll get back to you.” Unfortunately, the phrase has turned into a stalling tactic. A better tactic: Specify when you’ll be back in touch with the person.

3. “We’ll see.” This is most often used as a way to avoid confrontation or having to say “no.” Instead, just be honest.

4. “I guess … ” Tacking on this phrase gives the impression that you aren’t sure of what you’re talking about.

5. “If.” For example, “If Bob finishes his part of the project, then I can do my part.” Instead, assume a successful outcome.

—Adapted from "5 worst words to say at work," Sam Narisi, IT Manager Daily.

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