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7 Phrases That Say You Are an Unsure Leader

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Phrases not for leadership

Summary: When you’re in a leadership position, the last thing you want to be communicating is a lack of confidence or uncertainty.

Communication is necessary in everything we do, that is why communication skills are such an important quality to develop. Communication helps us connect and build relationships with others. What you say and how you say things can have a critical impact on how others perceive you. There are phrases that are commonly used that will undermine your authority as a leader or manager. Here are just seven phrases out of many that can diminish your effectiveness as a communicator and leader.

  1. “So sorry” – While this phrase is appropriate in some circumstances, it is quite often overused. Using this phrase repeatedly makes it lose sincerity and meaning.
  2. “I’m not sure” – Whenever you use this phrase, you are communicating a lack of confidence and certainty. This phrase is setting a guideline that encourages uninformed attitudes and unsupported rebuttals.
  3. “Do you get what I’m saying” – This phrase is bad to use in two ways. One way it can be used is when talking down to someone, the other when you aren’t sure your communication skills are effective. Either way, you are telling them that you aren’t effective at teaching or explaining things. A better thing to do would be to watch and listen to see if they exhibit an understanding.
  4. “I’ll try” – This phrase comes off as uncertain and lacking in capability. It will decrease the conviction others have in you and your work. Saying “I’ll do it” makes a stronger statement.
  5. “Honestly speaking” – This phrase doesn’t imply that the speaker is being honest. Those in PR are guilty of using the word often where it leaves the sense that something is being hidden. It also implies that you are less honest at other times that you speak.
  6. “Literally” – This word is often ranked as one of the most overused and misused words for the English language. Stop using this word altogether.
  7. “Like” – The first things most people think of when they hear this word is Valley girls and a weak communicator. While the word can still be used for comparisons, it is usually used in replace of “ummm” for speakers. You may think using the word makes you sound youthful but just ends up making you sound unintelligent.

Take note of words and phrases that you often use to determine if there is anything worth eliminating from your vocabulary. We all have so called “comfort” words that we use when uncomfortable, stressed, or tired.

What are some other phrases that you’ve had a boss or leader use that was ineffective? Tell us in the comments below the article.


7 Phrases That Say You Are an Unsure Leader by
Authored by: Amanda Griffin