10 Things to Say Instead of “Do Your Best”

“Do your best.” Have you said this? Or what about “Just do your best.” Is there a difference between those two phrases?

It depends on how they are said. I’ve often used the latter when employees say that they aren’t capable of doing the task at hand. It’s usually said with a sigh, “Just do your best,” as if I’m already acknowledging that their performances will be substandard.

The first phrase, though, “do your best,” can, if said in the proper chipper manner, indicate that this person should honestly do his or her best on this project. No stone left unturned, no detail ignored. There are very few times that this level of perfection is what you want. Most of the work your employees need to do is average work. 

If you want to motivate people to do the right kind of work, here are ten phrases you should use instead.

To read the 10 phrases, click here: 10 Things to Say Instead of “Do Your Best”

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4 thoughts on “10 Things to Say Instead of “Do Your Best”

  1. I would interpret “Do your best” as “Give it your best shot, and we’ll correct any errors later.”

    If I really needed perfection, I would state that “This needs to be as perfect as possible.”

  2. Do your best- Translation we know you are already doing the work of 3 people and you really have no time for this project but we are going to giver it to you anyways and expect it will somehow get done and no you cant drop anything else. If you are wondering how important it is all your projects are important and they all need to be done.

  3. I wish past superiors (when I was very entry level) would have made it clear that “Do your best with it. When you’re done, it will be given to Joe who add some parts, and then it will go to Jane for final edits before we present it.”

    So many times I felt like a flop, thinking other people had to correct my bad work. In fact, my work wasn’t bad at all – I was just never told I wasn’t actually creating what would be the final product.

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