leadership

A few phrases for your toolkit

Jaclyn Densley /

A reporter recently asked me for some “lines” women should have at the ready.

I’d never been asked that before but it was a good question and it made me think about the many phrases I often suggest women add to their arsenals so that they are prepared for whatever comes their way.

Try practising these until they become second nature to you:

“Be that as it may, I still would like …” Use this to hold your ground with someone who is giving you an excuse why you can’t have what you want. A variation would be: “I hear what you’re saying and I still would like …”

“I would be happy to do that for you. Let me tell you [how much it will cost, how much time it will take, how much help I will need, etc.]”

Good customer/client service requires you to be willing to do whatever it takes to get the job done, but it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t ask for what you need to meet the needs of others. Often when you tell them the cost of their request it soon gets modified.

If you have a difficult time accepting a compliment this is the one for you: “Thank you. I’m glad you noticed and appreciate the feedback.”

This is a nice way to say ‘Buzz off – I’m not buying whatever you’re selling’: “Although I can’t participate at this time I appreciate your letting me know about it.”

You can say this one as you step in front of the offender: “I’m sure you didn’t realise you just cut ahead of me in line.” (That one is best said with a smile.)

“Although I can’t do ______, I can do ______.” Contrasting is a powerful tool to set clear boundaries yet offer alternatives that are more acceptable to you.

Dr Lois Frankel is the author of the bestsellers Nice Girls Don’t Get the Corner Office and Nice Girls Don’t Get Rich. She can be reached through her website www.drloisfrankel.com.

You can find these and other tips for communicating in Nice Girls Just Don’t Get It, co-authored with Carol Frohlinger.

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