There are over 470,000 entries in the Merriam-Webster dictionary, with scores added every year. Yet in business, we tend to overuse the comfortable phrases we’ve become accustomed to, thinking we sound smart.
News flash: We don’t actually sound smart.
I’m guilty of it. You’re guilty of it. Your clients are guilty of it. Using these clichés must stop now. Communication (read: good communication) is critical for your business to succeed. It helps you establish credibility among clients and even employees.
I reached out to business professionals across the United States for their number one buzzword pet peeve, and better ways to communicate it. You’ll want to save this list.
I’ll get back to you.
“For me, the most frustratingly overused term in our organization is ‘I’ll get back to you.’ As an international team working across multiple time zones, this puts a giant question mark over the schedule of the task at hand. A much better way of handling these situations is to tackle them head on. Set yourself a date and time to review the query, give yourself a little leeway to actually react, and reply and commit to it in your response. This keeps everyone accountable for their own tasks and allows people to remain in sync with their duties!”
—Jon Hayes, marketer at Pixel Privacy
I hope you’re doing well.
“My number one overused business cliche that needs to go away is ‘I hope you’re doing well.’ Why? It’s not sincere. If you’re prospecting, either go straight to the point, or I usually compliment a person’s work—either their product or an article they have written, depending on how I found them.
If you are writing to somebody you already know, there are millions of other ways to word this, including,
- How’s it going at X company?
- Hope your last quarter turned out well.
- Just wanted to follow up quickly since we last spoke.
- Loved your last article on X topic.
And countless others, depending on the relationship you’ve already established with them.”
—Hung Nguyen, Marketing & Customer Satisfaction Manager, Smallpdf