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Euphemism in Business!

Provided by SME.com.ph

In business there are a lot of expressions that seem not appropriate, but are still practiced. There are those being used that need some substitutions as well. It is when euphemism, perhaps, can prove useful due to its softened, bland, inoffensive word or phrase to veil unpleasant, coarse, or blunt manner of speech.

On Telephone Spiels

Here is a funny story of a friend who overheard his officemate [in his previous work], saying, "I'm sorry she is indisposed right now." The reality was, his officemate meant that the person wanted by the caller was not available because she's busy. Next time, don't use indisposed, which means sick, ill, or nauseated.

An offensive way of answering the phone is, "I'm sorry she is in the washroom right now." What exactly does that mean? Is washroom for laundry house or a bathhouse? Others may understand what it means, but come to think of it, will the caller be interested to know where the person have gone to especially if you pointed to the toilet? Always remember, it is nice to say powder room rather than toilet. Or why not just simply reply by saying, "I'm sorry she momentarily stepped out of the room. Would you care to leave any message? I can take it or you can leave your name and contact number so as soon as she gets back, she can reach you then." It's straight, but still cordial.

Words that Suggests Half-truths and Triteness

Let me cite three words that are better used and said straight. Words such as: collection correspondent for bill collector, custodian engineer for janitor, and heavy congestion of vehicle for traffic jam.

Why use such words?

Is it because it sounds cutesy?

On the contrary, it lacks honesty. To promote better communication and comprehension—use clear words. It does not sound compromising, but it gives the real sense of professionalism.

Say and Write the Right Ones

When writing for business—you do not whip these words: backward, end, and destitute or poor in your piece.

You describe the Philippines as emerging or developing and not as backward. Finalize is the best word for end. For destitute or poor, underprivileged is not insulting, but creative speech.

To comment on something, you do not spew words like heated argument or a fight, but say confrontation;smell or stink to scent or odor. and

The advice is to heed these tips and further advise you to create a positive way of expressing and relating with others—your co-workers, employees, and clientele [existing and prospective].

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