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Updated by Wrike Team on Dec 28, 2016
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Phrases to NEVER Say at Work

Good delegation is not just an art, but a science. Delegate well, and your projects will all run smoothly and efficiently. Get it wrong, and you can end up with poor results. One key aspect of good delegation is communicating effectively about the project, and there are some phrases that are a definite no-no if you want to be sure of project success.

Here are 10 phrases that team members should never hear from you.


“I know you haven’t finished that section yet, but this needs to be done right now!”

Try this instead: "We have had to amend the project schedule, and this task should be next in line when you've finished your current task."

"I know you've never done anything like this before, but I'm sure you can handle it."

Try this instead: "I've arranged for you to work with a colleague so you can learn this skill; in the future you'll be able to can handle it on your own."

"Well, this is actually a super-easy task to do; anyone can do it."

Try this instead: "This task is important to the project; that's why I'm trusting you to do it."

"Just come up with something, and we’ll see if it fits."

Try this instead: "I'd like you to come up with a solution. Here are the criteria to use to assess possibilities."

"That's not the way I would have done it."

Try this instead: "I hadn't thought of tackling the task this way, but well done for coming up with such a great solution!"

"I’m going on a business trip for a week. By that time, things need to be done."

Try this instead: "I'm going on a business trip, but I'll check into our workspace daily to answer any queries."

"You should have shown me it before the deadline…"

Try this instead: "Is the project on track? We should have a meeting to see where we are before the ultimate deadline."

"You should have asked me first before making such an important decision!"

Try this instead: "Here's an outline of the project team and responsibilities so you know what decisions you can make."

"I've asked your colleague to handle the task, as well."

Try this instead: "I want you to work with a colleague on this, but you each have responsibility for a different part of the project."

"This is not exactly what it’s supposed to be, but OK, I’ll finalize it on my own."

Try this instead: "This isn't exactly right; shall we have a meeting about how you can fix it?"