Monday, September 1, 2014

Grammar & Status

The person with the higher status uses the word "I" less.


We use "I" more when we talk to someone with power because we're more self-conscious. We are focused on ourselves — how we're coming across — and our language reflects that.
FLG found this fascinating because, just the other day, one of his newer coworkers was drafting an email to a very senior financial executive and asked FLG to review before sending.  FLG's comment was to drop as many "I"s as possible.  Sounded too submissive.

2 comments:

The Ancient said...

I hope you resisted suggesting he refer to himself in the third person.

FLG said...

FLG did and FLG was proud of FLG.

 
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