Your words, your power, your productivity!


➤ How often do you say “sorry”?

➤ What’s the impact of your word choice?

➤ Do you influence action, or minimise your impact on others, and how does that affect productivity?


1. Start listening to yourself more: what words do you say that you don’t need to say?
2. Ask a trusted colleague to be listening out for any key words you say either too much or are having an impact on your personal power.
3. Practice using more positive or empowering or more accurate words or phrases.




– Hi. The other day, I was at a conference, and we had a lot of audience interaction, which means you need a runner coming from all different directions with hand-held microphone, so that everyone can hear what someone in the audience has to say. And this lady stood up to speak, and she started talking, and when the microphone was then presented to her, she looked down at the microphone, and she said, “Sorry,” and jumped a little bit.

And it just got me thinking around how we say, “Sorry,” sometimes, too much. Are you one of these people that says, “Sorry,” before you then launch into whatever it is that you want to talk about? And I know I’ve caught myself doing it as well, and I wonder what is it that makes us think, or what’s the trigger that goes on that says I need to say sorry first, before I then continue what I want to say?

Why am I sorry?

Do I really need to be sorry?

Is sorry the right word?

Now, this just conjures up multiple questions, and maybe not one simple answer, but definitely something to think about. You know, in that moment with that lady, when she received the microphone, to my way of thinking, the only word needed to be said was thanks or thank you. Sorry could have had a diminishing of power impact on how the audience saw her. That’s just one thought I’ve had, and I’m not saying that it’s the right way or the wrong way. It was just a thought that came into my mind, and the impact that sorry can have.

If you say sorry all the time, ask yourself:

What’s that about?

Why are you saying sorry so often?

And what’s actually the better word? Is it, “Excuse me?” Is it, “Thanks, and?” Is it, “No, and,” or, “Yes, and?”

What is it that sorry is doing for you that you think it’s doing for you, but actually may have a disempowering or a de-crediting, de-validating impact on you? Does it impact on how others see you because you’re saying sorry too much? Look, it was just one of those moments, something to think about.

I’d love to know what you think about this as well, and how this can impact on how others work with you, and therefore, how productive you are, especially when it comes to strong, healthy work relationships. Thanks, bye for now. 

I’d love to know your thoughts…

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