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Things You Don't Say

There are certain words and phrases that you have to be careful saying when transacting business.

When you're talking to friends and family, you can say things that won't be taken as being offensive because they are used in your everyday conversation. But when you're talking business with customers or clients, those same words or phrases may be taken as offensive and may damage your business relationships.

In business, you have to be very careful when talking to your clients and customers. Sometimes people make statements that are just a part of their everyday discourse and don't realize that those words or phrases, although said innocently, may be taken as an affront.

Have you ever had a conversation with someone and came away feeling that you've been called stupid, a liar, a cheat, or another negative connotation, even though the person didn't actually say those things outright?

They may not have meant to call you anything or to insinuate anything. They may not have realized that you felt uneasy by what was said, but the words they use seemed to have had an underlying meaning.

For instance, if you made a statement and the person you are talking to responded with "unbelievable" or "that's hard to believe." It could be interpreted as you are lying or what you are saying is a little hard to believe.

Phrases like "Don't you think that's a little far fetched?" "Now that's weird," and "How did you come up with that scenario?" may be taken as though you're saying that your client is a little nutty.

"Now, whose fault was that?" "I'm not playing the blame game" "It's not my fault" and "through no fault of your own" implies that although I'm not casting blame, it's really your fault.

"I can honestly say," or "Can I be honest with you?" are real no-no phrases in business. What these phrases are saying is that there may have been times in which you weren't honest with your clients.

By making certain statements, you can alienate your clients and make them doubt you as a professional. No one wants to be called stupid or be made to feel inadequate. When talking with clients and customers, you should always be cognizant of what you are saying and work on removing certain phrases that can be misconstrued from your vocabulary.

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