There are some things you ever want to say at work.
Words have power; they can either make you look good or bad. And the worst of all, there's no taking them back once they are out of your mouth.
Most of the times we assume that it's only the improper jokes, or politically incorrect faux pas that makes you looks bad. You will be surprised to know that these aren't the only ways to make yourself look bad.
Its often the subtle remarks that we use more often -the ones that paint us as incompetent and unconfident—that do the most damage.
No matter how talented you are or what your position is in a company, there are certain phrases that you should not use in the office for they instantly change the way people see you and can forever cast you in a negative light.
These phrases are so loaded with negative implications that they are often called as slow killer to your reputation in the company.
Below are the few phrases that are called as career killers. How many do you use?
"I hate this job."
You may not be happy at your current job but you don't need to tell everyone about it. No one likes the complainer and the company may think that you are bringing the moral of other employees down. Bosses are quick to catch and replace the naysayers who drag down morale, for there are plenty of enthusiastic individuals looking to replace you at any given time.
"It's not fair."
Everyone knows that life isn't fair. Saying it's not fair suggests that you think life is supposed to be fair, which makes you look immature and naïve. The successful people are the ones who acknowledge this and figure out a way to still succeed.
If you are not sure of a project or task was not assigned to you, instead of being critical you need to stick to the facts, stay constructive, and leave your interpretation out of it. Talk your boss and ask her why the project was not assigned to you. Take a step further and ask her what you can do/learn to get this project that next time. You will be surprised how small steps can make your life fair.
"That's not in my job description."
Yes, you may sometimes be asked to do the task that are not mentioned in the job description, but at that time rather than saying "it's not in my job description", just do it. Later on, schedule a meeting with your boss to discuss this task and your job duties. If you keep bringing this phase, your bosses may think that you are only willing to do the bare minimum required to keep getting a paycheck, which is a bad thing if you like job security.
"I have always done it this way"
Technology changes so fast that even a six-month-old process could be outdated and if you don't change with the technology than you and your skills get obsolete too. Yes, it may be difficult to update your skills every few months and change is never easy or welcome. But saying this is the way it's always been done not only makes you sound lazy and resistant to change, and now when technology is considered the best tool that you not using it may not be very welcoming to the company.
The word "try" shows that you lack confidence to execute a task. Take ownership of your work and capabilities. If you're asked to do something, either commit to doing it or offer an alternative, but don't say that you'll try because it sounds like you won't try all that hard.
"It's not my fault. It's his fault."
At times of wrong doing, be accountable for your own actions no matter how small it is. If you had any role, accept the responsibility and if you were not the part of the wrongdoing, then don't cast the blame. Stick to the facts, and let your boss and colleagues draw their own conclusions about who's to blame.
I can't is another way of saying won't. When people hear I can't, they assume that you are I won't and that you are not willing to do what it takes to get the job done.
If you really can't do something because of personal reasons, time preference or that you lack the necessary skills, then instead of saying "I can't", offer an alternative solution. Instead of saying what you can't do, say what you can do. For example, instead of saying "I can't run the report today, say "I can run it tomorrow morning and give it to you 10am. Will that work?" By doing this you are saying, I can't but I can too.
"This will only take a minute."
At work, rarely does a task takes a minute and unless you're literally going to complete the task in 60 seconds. Saying that something only takes a minute undermines your skills and gives the impression that you rush through tasks. Feel free to say that it won't take long, but don't make it sound as though the task can be completed any sooner than it can actually be finished.
"He's lazy/unskilled/a jerk."
There is no upside to making a critical remark about a colleague.
The moment you start pointing fingers is the moment people start seeing you as someone who lacks responsibility for their actions. This makes people nervous. Some will avoid working with you altogether, and others will strike first and blame you when something goes wrong.
Putting It All Together
Eliminating these phrases from your vocabulary pays huge benefits. They have a tendency to sneak up on you when you least expect them to, so you're going to have to catch yourself until you've solidified the habit of not saying them.