5 sentences to never say at work

The professional world is a universe that requires a certain finesse in speech as well as in behaviour in general. In the company, the words you use give an idea of your professional image. It is therefore a good idea to choose the right expressions when you are in a professional environment. Certain phrases are thus absolutely to be banned if you want to be considered a leader. But which ones? Forbes magazine interviewed Darlene Price (author of the book Well Said! Presentations and Conversations That Get Results) about those words or phrases that should be avoided at all costs at work. We take stock with you.


1. “It’s not fair.”

Your colleague has received a pay raise while you work harder than he does. This can indeed create some frustration. But complaining or brooding about your anger in the workplace would be counterproductive. Instead, take stock of the facts, build a case and present it calmly to the people responsible,” advises Darlene Price.


2. “It’s not my problem” / “It’s not my job” / “I don’t get paid for this”

This sentence is to be banished, because it shows that you do not have the team spirit, nor the sense of solidarity. This does not mean that you have to accept everything, but you must be more tactful in your refusal. Darlene Price says that if, for example, you’re overwhelmed and your boss asks you to take on an extra task, tell him that you’d be happy to help and ask what priority you should give to each of the projects you’re working on. And Darlene Price’s continued use of this method will show that you’re willing to invest in the team, while reminding him that he needs to be realistic in his expectations.


3. “I will try.”

The verb to try implies a certain reluctance or lack of commitment. It is perceived by influential leaders as a rather negatively connoted verb in professional exchanges. Imagine, for example, that you absolutely must mail an invoice before a certain time and ask your colleague to take care of it when he goes to his next customer. If he replies “I’ll try” you will feel obliged to do it yourself because the sentence implies a possibility of failure.


4. “But that’s the way we’ve always done it”

It should also be remembered that initiative is the hallmark of leaders. A good worker must be able to think outside the box to innovate. Employers value innovation and creative thinking among their employees. However, this sentence proves that you are stuck in your habits, rigid and closed, without any prospect of evolution. Change is not always negative: never be so adamant about a new idea or way of doing things,” advises Darlene Price.


5. “He’s a fool” / “He’s lazy” / “My job sucks” / “I hate this company”

According to Darlene Price, this kind of sentence not only reveals immaturity, but can get you fired. Making those kinds of judgments is always going to reflect poorly on you. If you have something to reproach someone with, let them know directly, tactfully and politely: it will prove your professionalism.


Why use an outplacement service?

Outplacement (or reclassification) is a coaching process for professional mobility. Its aim is to make the process of breaking a contract between a company and its employees less complicated.

It is an external outplacement service provided by a human resources firm. It consists in guiding and accompanying the former employee in the search for a new job or in the launch of his own activity. The adviser listens to the candidate and provides support, advice and expertise.


Evaluation and coaching process

Every new beginning begins with a check-up. Taking stock of what has been accomplished and what remains to be done. This is exactly the same process with outplacement. The HR consultant will help the employee to make a personal and professional assessment. In this way, both will be able to identify where the employee comes from in terms of career path and all the possibilities that might be open to him or her.

This is done by first analysing the background of the person concerned in order to better understand it. Then, the consultant helps the former employee to identify his or her strengths in order to maximize them and to be able to use them better in the future. The candidate’s areas for improvement are also analysed.


Outplacement: transition coaching and springboard to a new job

Some moments in our professional career can be quite sensitive and unsettling. For example, a breach of contract or a dismissal are difficult events that can easily confuse any employee.

To enable the employee to bounce back and to be able to orient himself effectively, the consultant will also take on the role of a coach. In addition to technical support, there is a human dimension that is added here. This translates into listening and understanding the personality and full potential of the candidate, which are now at the heart of the outplacement process. We talk about coaching here because the consultant seeks to improve the skills and performance of the candidate. Whether it is in the context of a reconversion through training or a new project, the objective is to equip the candidate to reposition himself favourably and sustainably in his market.

Outplacement is a real career accelerator. It helps the beneficiary of the service to make the right choices, by having all the necessary tools at his disposal. In this way, the candidate avoids the mistakes he or she might have made if he or she was not accompanied.


The benefits of outplacement

In order to be able to part with an employee in the best possible conditions, the company itself chooses the service provider who will take care of the outplacement service.

Outplacement is beneficial to company executives because it allows them to reposition themselves quickly after a layoff. The period of unemployment is thus reduced and the employee can return to work in a short period of time.

It also allows the employee to maintain or even increase his or her income level. Indeed, it is common for candidates accompanied by an outplacement consultant to find a better paid job than their previous one. Trusting an outplacement consultant means putting all the chances on his or her side to get a job according to his or her real abilities and experience.  

Outplacement is also very advantageous for companies. By making it easier for employees to return to work, companies demonstrate their social responsibility. In this way, they support the efforts of governments by helping to reduce unemployment.

Finally, using an outplacement service contributes greatly to the employer’s good reputation, as it is perceived as helping employees who are separating from the company to find a new job. The company thus promotes values of respect, consideration and recognition of the services and efforts made by its former employees. 


The importance of an HR department within a company

Human resources management plays a fundamental role within companies. Indeed, it is a complex and transversal function that must be at the very heart of any company’s strategy.

People create value, they are the most important resource of any company. And the most important mission of the HR function is to provide the company with efficient and fulfilled human capital.


The HR function designs an optimal recruitment strategy

Talent is essential to the growth and evolution of any structure in Africa. We must therefore be able to attract them. First, the HR manager(s) carry out a complete diagnosis of the company in order to understand its needs. Thus, they draw up a mapping of jobs and skills in order to have a clear and precise vision of talent (current and future). It is also a question here of listing the skills already present within the company in order to unleash their potential. This is a real groundwork that requires expert hands.

Once the recruitment plan is established, it is now time to attract talent. To do so, HR managers will need to leverage their employer brand and corporate culture. These two factors are key to differentiating themselves from other employers in Africa.


Talent management and retention

Once recruitment is finalised, HR management remains crucial to the cohesion of the organisation .

Personnel management, for example, is a key factor in the smooth running of any business. Establishing the salary scale, setting up social benefits, monitoring the evolution of performance, including evaluation and training … It is therefore a complete cycle that is set in motion and that concerns both the daily and the long-term vision.

In addition to the administrative management of personnel, there are also crisis management (economic crisis, health crisis, etc.), or even internal conflicts that may arise within the company. In these delicate phases too, human resources are a crucial player.

As we saw with the VIDOC-19 pandemic, the strategic importance of HR is well established. There is an urgent need for companies in Africa to commit now to making HR a strategic HR function.



The HR function, a real growth lever for companies in Africa

Much more than just an administrative department for contract management, the HR function in Africa is a real driving force for the company’s development.

To achieve its growth objective, HR managers in Africa are responsible for building the company’s marketing strategy and ensuring the development and deployment of the employer brand. These two branches concern both the company’s internal and external communication.

All of these elements contribute not only to the well-being of employees, but also to a better functioning of the company and its good reputation.


Are you overwhelmed or have little knowledge in this area? Don’t hesitate to ask an experienced Consultant to help you build your HR strategy and deploy it. By deciding to make it your priority, you are investing in the development of your company.