Helpful phrases to use in work

Whether you are starting a new job or you just feel a little overwhelmed in your current one, here’s how to assert yourself in the workplace. It can be difficult to stay on top of things, especially when working from home, so we’ve pulled together some helpful phrases to use in work.


Email phrases to use in work

It’s time to stop apologising. You are one person and you are trying your best. There is no need to be guilty. Stop saying ‘sorry’ and start acknowledging the fact that you are working hard and sometimes people will just have to wait a little longer.

Re-read your emails before you hit send and delete your ‘sorry for the delayed response’ or ‘sorry this took a while’. After time this will get easier and you will stop feeling guilty for not having enough hours in the day.

Instead of: Sorry I’m running late….

Try saying ‘Thank you for waiting’. This still shows respect and manners, but means that you are not apologising for having too much work on.

Instead of: Sorry I didn’t realise…

Say “Thanks for pointing that out”. Just because something wasn’t made clear to you in the first place, it doesn’t make it your fault. You job is not to be a code breaker.

Instead of: Sorry to bother you…

Try saying “Do you have a minute?”. You shouldn’t feel like you are bothering a work colleague or a manager, you are all working towards the same goal and if they help you get your job done, then they are supporting the wider goals of the company.

Instead of: Sorry, I don’t understand…

Ask your colleage or manager “Please can you explain that to me again?”. It is not your fault if you don’t understand a task that is given to you and you should never be made to feel that way.

Remove the word ‘Just’

One of the most common way to apologise in emails, without actually saying the word sorry, is by saying the word ‘just’. Eg. ‘I just wondered if you had that document ready’ or ‘Just wondering if you can help me’. Adding this word weakens your request and means that people don’t see it as urgent or assertive. Delete this word from your email and see how quickly the replies come back.

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