Words are the lifeblood of our business, and the words we don’t use are as important as those we do.

Champions don’t say try, might, maybe, should, would or could. Have you ever tried to do anything? When I try to pick up a quarter, my hand never touches the coin. Whenever I hear the verb try in a conversation, I can be pretty sure that whatever action is being discussed is unlikely to happen.

Shoulda, woulda, couldas always leave a trail of missed opportunities: words I should have said, actions I would have taken, realities that could have been—if only I had done something differently.

Why not use verbs that clearly state our intent?

Compare “I’ll try to be at the meeting” with “I intend to be at the meeting.” Who would you rather have on your team?

Tentative words often cover up a lack of the confidence it takes to “Go for It!” Are you afraid of making a mistake? There’s another word I avoid: I prefer to call mistakes “learning experiences.” By using words that move me forward, instead of criticizing myself and spending precious time in disappointment and sorrow, I can speak my intention clearly, take a step towards accomplishing it, have a learning experience and then adjust my next step accordingly.

Years ago, when learning the Love and Logic® method of communicating with my teenage son, I learned to use the interjection “Bummer!” to cut through the drama of his life, all the while expressing empathy for his feelings. He quickly learned that the next words out of my mouth would be, “What are you going to do about it?”

Now I use “Bummer!” both out loud and internally to myself. That word signals my brain that a learning event has occurred and I naturally look for the insight that will move me forward.

In another training program I learned that “communication equals the result I get.” If I’m getting good results, chances are my communication is adequate. If my results aren’t so good, I usually need to take a look at the words I’m using—which reflect the way I’m thinking.

I wish you success as you find the words that lead to the results you want in your business and your life. Networking University is here to help. Learn the language of leaders and you will learn to lead.

Education changes everything. See you in class,

Glenn Head
Dean, Networking University