New England Malayalee Association’s blog

December 1, 2008

Effective public speaking – some don’ts

Filed under: Speaking — nemausa @ 3:58 pm
Tags: ,

If you are striving to be a effective public speaker, here’s some tips. Oxford university has compiled a Top-10 list of most irritating phrases.  This could help you in your next speech or presentation.

1 – At the end of the day

2 – Fairly unique

3 – I personally

4 – At this moment in time

5 – With all due respect

6 – Absolutely

7 – It’s a nightmare

8 – Shouldn’t of

9 – 24/7

10 – It’s not rocket science

[Oxford compiles list of top ten irritating phrases]

On a similar note, BBC has compiled a list of 20 most hated cliches based on online surveys.

1. My vote for most irritating cliche has to be “basically”. I even manage to irritate myself by using it, although I do try not to.
AS, Salford, England

2. A few minutes ago I said “basically” was the most irritating cliche. I’ve changed my mind: “To be fair” is the most awful thing anybody can ever say, particularly since it is invariably followed by a biased and utterly unfair comment.
Ian, Sheffield

3. My most hated expression has to be “to be honest”. What does it mean? Are you normally dishonest then? To my shame you might even catch me saying it.
John Airey, Peterborough

4. It has to be “going forward”, used by business people/politicians, as in: “Going forward, we need to do…X.” Since time is irreversible, it’s totally unnecessary. No one experiences life “going backward”.
Alex Brodie, London

[20 of your most hated cliches]

In reality, for most of us, avoidance of these cliches and phrases would severely restrict the vocabulary;-) .

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1 Comment »

  1. I have my disagreement with some or most of the “irritating phrases”. “I peraonally” think this irritation is relative. I like most of them when I hear from a speaker. The interpretarion of the literary meanings may be right but those words bring in a good sense of the situation and an understanding beyong those alphabets put together!
    Example: Everybody know that we can only “move forward” but when we use “moving forward” ( with a pause ) it shows a sense of determination, a feeling of learning from the pat etc etc.

    I was wondering why “like” is not number one!? You can’t hear a teenager speak one word without 10 or more un necessary “likes” !
    “like I am commenting here like its like I had to do it like”

    Thanks for posting.

    Comment by Anand — December 1, 2008 @ 4:46 pm | Reply


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