Want to Get a Promotion? Avoid Saying These Negative Phrases


Gone are the days where seniority got you the promotion. Today’s employers understand that it isn’t the years of loyalty that make you fit for a manager’s job, but rather, your qualities, skills, and approach to the job.

However, while “positivity” isn’t exactly a prerequisite for most jobs, it certainly helps when the time comes to select an employee for promotion. Employers are looking for managers who have a can-do attitude and problem-solving skills.

Even if you’re not normally a negative person, the things you say regularly can give off the wrong impression. Have you caught yourself saying these phrases at work?

“That’s not my job.”

While job descriptions are great for outlining expectations for new hires, life is a little messier. Sometimes, your coworkers leave and their position doesn’t get filled right away. Or perhaps a special event has come up and your manager might need an extra set of hands.

Showcasing your willingness to go the extra mile and lend a helping hand shows your dedication to the success of the business. But more importantly, it shows that you’re not just out for yourself – you’re a team player!

“I can’t do that.”

Sometimes, your manager might ask something of you that you might not be able to do. Perhaps you don’t have the time, or you haven’t had the proper training to do it.

However, rather than simply turning them down, take it one step further and suggest an alternative solution. Problem-solving without prompting shows your employer that you’re invested in their success and you are capable of figuring things out without being asked.

“But it’s their fault.”

Accountability is not always a quality that comes up in job interviews, but it’s an unspoken requirement for great managers. People who tend to shift blame to others or their circumstances tend to leave a sour taste with their coworkers and come off as undependable.

If the fault lies with you, be honest and acknowledge your mistake, followed by an effort to fix it. If it’s not your mistake, don’t jump to blaming others – instead, focus on the issue itself and how you can help solve the problem.

“This is a waste of time.”

Everyone’s gotten stuck with a tedious, boring job at work at some point. But instead of complaining, it’s a lot more productive to put your head down and focus on completing it so you can move on to other tasks.

If you’re really in a bind, approach your manager and ask about the purpose of the task – there might be a reason you’ve been asked to handle it that you’re unaware of!

What are some other negative phrases you should avoid in the workplace? If you’re looking for a brand new job opportunity, be sure to explore HigherMe’s Job Board!

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