Question from one of our customers:  “One of our employees frequently uses the phrase, “Like I said,…” when speaking with our customers over the phone. Sometimes this comes across sarcastically. Can you offer an alternative that is more customer-friendly?”

“Like I said” is often used when you need to answer something that you have already answered with the same person. “Like I said, first we should start with filling out the application, and then submit it to the office.”

Sometimes it is said with an unstated tone of “Like I said, you idiot, …”, although of course we would never say that out loud and we certainly wouldn’t intend to have someone think we believe he/she is an idiot.

If the listener did think we just called her an idiot, we stand the chance of alienating her and potentially losing her as a customer, friend, or colleague.

It would be better to be emotionally in control and state your message without the starter, “Like I said, …”

Simply state, “First, let’s start by filling out the application and submitting it to the office.”  What a great way to show your Service Excellence attitude in an emotionally intelligent way!

Hope that gives you another professional communication technique to use!