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Wednesday, September 24, 2014

46.5% of People Hate to Hear this Phrase

The Orlando Business Journal weekly publishes a Biz Pulse page.  Directly from its publication, Biz Pulse page features, "...quizzes, surveys, and polls."  The poll from 9/12's edition caught my eye.

Question: "Which phrase do you most hate to hear employees or co-workers say?"

What would your response be?  "That's not my job," received the majority at 46.5%.  Next came the similar phrase, "It's not my fault," at 20.9%.

These are phrases I dislike (I don't like using the word hate in this context.  It's business after all, not life or death).  I dislike them because each deflects responsibility or subtly demonstrates a lack of knowledge. 

As a customer, my natural next question will be, after thinking the person is incompetent, "Then who should I be talking to?"  Now I have to run in more circles, and it wastes time and resources for both you and me.

Why employees use them is they have not been trained on better relationship building alternatives, or what they should say when they truly do not know what to do.  Training means they are given at least three choices they could feel comfortable using, and then practice using them in a safe environment.

One of my favorite phrases to hear from an employee, "I am not sure, but I will find out."  Another favorite, "It's not normally my job, but I will be happy to take care of it."

If you can't help employees develop their service language, there is always the "Swear Jar" option.
 

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