When it comes to the ‘human’ element of building strong client relationships, even customer service pros need regular reminders of what “not” to say. Below are eight phrases to avoid for smoother customer conversations. 


Some topics are better left unsaid when trying to make a good impression. Many of these we tend to know intrinsically: don’t mention an old flame in front of a new spouse. Don’t inquire about someone’s salary or shoe size. Don’t ask who they voted for, or start venting about your boss…

It’s the same for professional service agents — people who earn a living from building customer relationships. As the best conversationalists among us, sometimes even service agents need to be reminded of what not to say.

Here are eight phrases we recommend your customer service reps never say, with alternatives to help them “swim” better through customer conversations.


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This article was updated in July 2022