Career Killers… What Not to Say at Work..

1. “It’s Not Fair.” – this suggests you’re Immature & Naive.

2. “This is the Way it’s Always Been Done.” – This makes you sound lazy & resistant to change, but it could make your boss wonder why you haven’t tried to improve things on your own.

3. “No Problem.” – You’re implying that his or her request should have been a problem. This makes people feel as though they’ve imposed on you, or you’ve done them a favour.

Say something like, “It was my pleasure,” or “I’ll be happy to take care of that”

4. “I think … /This may be a silly idea … /I’m going to ask a stupid question.” – These overly passive phrases instantly erode your credibility.

5. “This will only take a minute.” – This undermines your skills & gives the impression that you rush through tasks.

6. “I’ll try.” – This sounds tentative & suggests that you lack confidence in your ability to execute the task. Take full ownership of your capabilities. If you’re asked to do something, either commit to doing it or offer an alternative.

7. “He’s lazy/incompetent/a jerk.” – There is no upside to making a disparaging remark about a colleague.

8. “That’s not in my job description.” – Sound as though you’re only willing to do the bare minimum required to keep getting a paycheck.

9. “It’s not my fault.” – Be accountable. If you had any role, own it. If not, offer an objective, dispassionate explanation of what happened. Stick to the facts, and let your boss and colleagues draw their own conclusions about who’s to blame.

10. “I can’t.” – People don’t like to hear I can’t because they think it means I won’t. Saying I can’t suggests that you’re not willing to do what it takes to get the job done.

11. “I hate this job.” – Doing so labels you as a negative person and brings down the morale of the group. Bosses are quick to catch onto naysayers who drag down morale, and they know that there are always enthusiastic replacements waiting.