Info & Advice - Standing Out, Taking Initiative
Speaking Professionally

Little word substitutions for big impact…

Speaking like a seasoned professional makes your coworkers, boss and clients take you seriously.  You don’t need to be a master linguist to speak professionally.  Just a few simple word substitutions can make all the difference.  

·         Collaborate - Use this instead of work together.  “I would like to collaborate with John on this project,” comes across as professional speak.


·         Please Advise - A stand-alone sentence often used at work.  Suitable for emails.  Stands in for, “what should I do?” or the super unprofessional, “????”.  Remember, it’s just as important to talk like a professional within email communications.


·         Clarification - “What do I do?,” will have co workers rolling their eyes at your ineptness.  Try starting out a question with, “just to clarify…,” to avoid looking like someone who just doesn’t get it.  For example, “just to clarify, the report needs this, this, and that, correct?”


·         Internal - Use this term when referring to anything that needs to remain as information within your company.  As in, “confidentiality is key when dealing with internal records.”


·         Implement - Bosses absolutely love “implement”.  Implement means to, “put into action.”  As in, “I would like to implement a few quality control steps.” (Bonus: bosses also love “quality control”).


·         Objective – Use this term instead of “goal.”  As in, “the objective of the sales call was to procure new business leads.”


·         Unacceptable - While not a strictly professional term, you will be shocked how far this little bomb goes when dealing with unfavorable results.  People can argue with “not good” or “needs to be improved”, but “unacceptable” is final and indisputable.  Use it when a little hardball is necessary. “These figures are unacceptable”.  It’s kind of fun too…unless you’re on the receiving end of that of course.


·         The Bottom Line - The bottom line is a polite way of referring to a company’s need for profit.  Try dropping it with vendors to come across as an in-the-know professional.  “The company won’t pay for it,” sounds cheap.  Rather, “I have to keep our bottom line in mind,” more so implies what you mean without sounding sophomoric.  

Learning to talk like a professional means carefully crafting sentences for maximum impact.  Using these substitutions and picking up on industry specific lingo will have you speaking like a seasoned professional in no time.

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By stacymorgan

Initiating a Recycling Program

You might have been surprised to learn no recycling initiative had begun at your workplace.  This is the 21st Century!  What modern company doesn’t recycle?  Why not show some initiative of how great you are for your employer?  Break through the stubborn ways of the old-timers, and take it upon yourself to get this recycling thing rolling.


Team Up - Your first step to recycling at work is to gain management support.  Without “The Man’s” support, you won’t succeed.  You can sell the program on cost effectiveness resulting from waste removal reduction and the possibility of extra income to the office from rare recycled materials.  Once “okayed,” talk to facility managers and/or maintenance managers introducing the program.  You may also want to recruit staff support or a ‘green team’to persuade management or give the staff ownership of the program.


The Plan - Next, determine what is worth recycling within the different departments.  Offices of course recycle paper.  Warehouses recycle cardboard, pallets, and packing material.  Lunch rooms can collect plastic and glass bottles.  Find the right fit for the workplace, and then work with maintenance staff to determine collection bin placement and procedure.   Desks can have personal recycle bins or a cardboard box for papers, and maintenance can empty these weekly or every few days.  Other materials might need alternate strategies.  But don’t stress.  At this point, the “dirty work” is done.


Spread The Word - Now the fun begins.  Ask management to send company e-mails to introduce the program and bolster participation.  Even try this novel idea… Send out a newsletter about the program, then ask people to commence the recycling by, hey, recycling your newsletter after reading.  You could even discuss training sessions that you, your department, or the Maintenance or Facilities teams could provide to the company to teach recycling procedures.  Just be creative.


Keep It Active - Finally, take satisfaction in monitoring the program.  Check up on your plan on if it needs any tweaking and think of ideas to provide improvement solutions.  Also send fun updates to the company about progress made, money saved or amount of material recycled every few weeks. 



When you implement these steps, you’ll break your company out of its 1950’s routine and score some major points for your vision and drive to improve your workplace.  What boss wouldn’t love that?  Plus you get to save

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By christopheropiela

Introduce Yourself at Work
Yo, what up, my name is John, but my friends call me Butter. I’m in the cube by the door. Hit me up if you need anything.” LOL! Unless you’re joining a rock band, that is NOT the best way to introduce yourself at work. A professional introduction will help you far more in establishing good working relationships immediately.

In general, think of introducing yourself at work as more formal than with new friends, but less formal than a job interview.

Sincere Gestures - Whether someone introduces you or you approach another to introduce yourself, make eye contact and smile. This simple gesture goes so far, and it puts forth a message that says, “I respect you, and I’m approachable.” And be sincere in your actions. And of course shake hands when possible, and yes, your right hand is best.

Say Your Name – Introduce yourself by your first name. If you go by a nickname, say that secondary and make sure that it is appropriate such as Red or Ziggy. Do not go below the waist on this one.

Walk Around - During your first day or first week, if you’re in a smaller company, walk around and introduce yourself. Or, especially in larger companies, ask a supervisor or co-worker to give you a tour of the place. And especially ask for introductions to key people you’ll be working with. Note. Remember names! Carry a pad and pen if you have to.

Ask Questions – Perhaps the most important part of introductions is to ask the other person about their role in the company and how your job will relate to theirs. Learning their background and responsibilities will become very helpful as you get started on your job. If they ask you a question, answer and return the question to them. This shows your interest in them and will be a great start to some positive office relationships.

Overall, just be your best professional self. Master introducing yourself with that extra heap of self-confidence, and you’ll be off to meeting new people and making the rounds in no time.

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By christopheropiela

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