I received an email today from a conference organizer.
Deadline Extended! There's still time to secure your sponsorship package.
The sender probably wanted me to think, "Wow, that is so nice of them to extend the deadline and give me more time." What did I really think? "They're desperate."
My next thought was there are a lot of customer service phrases that often have the opposite effect of what's intended. Here are a few of my not-so-favorite examples. Please drop a comment and share yours!
Empty Phrase #1: We are the leaders in customer service.
Translation: Our empty service slogan is about as good as it is going to get.
Empty Phrase #2: Your call is very important to us.
Translation: Please don't hang up - we'll get to you eventually.
Empty Phrase #3: It will be my pleasure to assist you.
Translation: My employer doesn't trust me to be polite, so they gave me this awkward script.
Empty Phrase #4: Is there anything else I can help you with?
Translation: You're done, right?
Empty Phrase #5: Have a nice day.
Translation: Beat it, slappy!
Yes, these phrases are sometimes delivered with full heart and meaning, but not often. I'm always much happier with someone who is genuine, caring, and infuses a bit of their own personality into the interaction.