November 2, 2011

Leadership Tip: Avoid The Word 'But'

If you eliminate the work 'but' from your memos, e-mail, phone conversations, and dealings with villagers, you'll strengthen your ability to persuade others.


Any time you use the word 'but', what you're really saying is that you disagree with that person. For example, if you say, "I agree with you, but let me say this...," villagers will wonder if you really agree with them or not.

The solution?

Always replace 'but' with 'and'. In the above example, you would say: "I agree with you, and let me say this..." Replacing 'but' with 'and' eliminates all contradiction from your message, and makes what you say more powerful.


Vanessa said...

Excellent advice! I definitely needed that! Thanks.

Villager said...

Vanessa - I'm glad it was a helpful post. I'm going to pepper my blog with these tips over the coming weeks.

Glenn Robinson said...

Good advice my friend. I know one person who will say "no but..." after I tell them something - even if they agree! It drives me (and my wife) crazy!

Villager said...

Glenn - Yeah, I know what you mean. Sometimes you can hear the 'BUT' coming from a mile away!

Anyhow, Merry Christmas!