The 3 most dangerous words in business!!!

Choose from our Stagnation Menu. Mmmm. Delicious!

These words propagate the status quo, suppress change and create a whole world of “can’t do” so should be avoided whenever possible.


  • If I could just get that job/lose weight/pass that exam/win that client my life would be so much better.
  • If I can find some time I am going to get on top of my Inbox and keep it that way.
  • If you want me to do that I will have to have this, that and the other in place first.


  • When I get time that’s the next thing I’m going to do
  • When I have read up on social media I will join LinkedIn and get connected.
  • When you’re as old as me you don’t need to follow the rules.


  • I hear what you’re saying BUT that does not apply to me.
  • That is a great idea BUT……
  • I can see what you’re suggesting is right for most places BUT it just won’t work here.

When you feel the need to use any of these cop-out words think again: is what you’re saying true or could it be down to the threat of losing control, laziness, fear of change or just because it wasn’t your idea in the first place. Instead why not try a different answer like “how could we”, “why don’t we” or “what if we did this”.

Answers are everything. It’s better work towards them than stand in the way of their discovery.


Passionate about making business development a profession not just a job. Built and sold a £40m group in less than 9 years. Doing it all again and loving it!

Tagged with: , , , ,
Posted in Achievement, Efficiency and Effectiveness, excellence
6 comments on “The 3 most dangerous words in business!!!
  1. Wouldn’t the world be a nicer place if we all trie to be alittle more ‘can do’! As a solicitor I know that client just want a ‘what if we do this’ approach and not an excuse on why things aren’t simple/ easy to achieve.

    • Mike Ames says:

      I couldn’t agree more Verity. If there’s one thing I really struggle to accept its that “yer but” mentality designed to protect the status quo.

  2. Chris Weston says:

    One key phrase that tells me someone hasn’t been listening, but just waiting for me to finish – ‘what you have to understand is…’

    Just like your ifs, buts and whens, it shows a negative mindset, already closed to ideas!

    • Mike Ames says:

      I like this Chris – it’s like they’re just waiting for you to finish speaking (if you’re lucky) before they launch in there with their four-penneth worth and not really listening at all.

  3. Jordan says:

    Excellent post. If, when and but are words that delay action and make excuses. The only way to progress in business is to have a can-do attitude and offer real solutions. I also don’t like the phrase “I think,” because it is not definitive.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Mike Ames

Passionate about making business development a profession not just a job. Built and sold a £40m group in less than 9 years. Doing it all again and loving it!

Like the blog, enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 1,107 other followers

Visit my website
Flair Coaching Website
Register For My Monthly Newsletter
‘Business Development for Busy People’ Ebook by Mike Ames

Click the image to download a free sample chapter

Blog Archive
Follow me on Twitter
Share this blog
Bookmark and Share
%d bloggers like this: