“Think twice before you speak, because your words and influence will plant the seed of either success or failure in the mind of another.” —Napoleon Hill
Darlene Price, president of Well Said, Inc., and author of “Well Said! Presentations and Conversations That Get Results,” told Business Insider that words, poorly and unconsciously chosen, can indeed harm your credibility, relationships, and opportunities for advancement at work.
“Words matter,” she explained. “They are a key component of persuasive communication. Regardless of the audience, topic, or industry … a leader uses language to influence someone’s mind in order to achieve a certain result. That’s one reason they’re seen as leaders; their words compel people to follow.”
She said one word these people don’t use at work is “try.”
If your boss says to you, “I need your proposal by 10 a.m. tomorrow for the customer meeting,” and your reply is, “Okay. I’ll try to get it finished,” they probably won’t be thrilled.
“The word ‘try’ implies the possibility it may not get finished,” Price said. And no boss wants to hear this, as it presupposes possible failure.
It also tells them you’re not completely confident in your abilities to get something done, which isn’t the message you want to send at work.
Instead, she suggested trying: “Yes, I will get it finished” or “I will have it on your desk by 9 a.m.”
If it’s not an unreasonable request, there’s no reason you shouldn’t be able to get it done — and therefore no reason to use the word “try.”
But if for some reason you really can’t complete the assigned task, you’ll want to politely ask for an extended deadline and get figure out a way to complete the task by then.
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