Things Successful Leaders Avoid Saying (part 5)

posted in: Communication 6

Here’s a phrase to purge:

…that would be great.

Two reasons why:

1) It’s not specific.  If we know that people are more engaged when presented with frequent, specific, direct feedback, then we need to seek out chances to be specific. If something “would be great,” why? Will it make life easier? Help meet a deadline? Make your motives clear? Establish credibility? Save work down the road?  Nearly every use of “that would be great” can have one of these specific reasons.  Take advantage of the opportunity.

2) Office Space.  The cult classic flick Office Space has a really bad boss in it, and he ends most requests with “That’d be great.” When you use the phrase, you’re emulating one of the ickiest pop-culture bosses ever.

So, if you could avoid this phrase, that’d be great.

So, if you could avoid this phrase, you’ll provide clearer communication and engage people more.

6 Responses

  1. Sally Wilke
    | Reply

    excellent; nice connection with Office Space.

  2. Alan Feirer
    | Reply

    Thanks – I’m a real hipster!

  3. Steve Douglas
    | Reply

    There’s nothing like something from the vague and ambiguous department to lead people down the wrong path. Add to that misaligned (or total absent) business objectives and you have a real mess. “What is it ya say ya do here?”

  4. Alan Feirer
    | Reply

    Right on, Steve. “vague and ambiguous department” – great! I’ll have to use that one sometime for a thing.

  5. Jerod
    | Reply

    Maybe instead of that would be great, show appreciation.

    If you could work late today I would appreciate it, there’s a lot left to take care of so we can bill it out tomorrow….

    It’s not great for anyone to work late unless it’s really worth something.

    • Alan Feirer
      | Reply

      That is a beautiful and practical idea, Jerod. Thanks.

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