offering suggestions. An english student guide. in red and white on a blackboard.

Learn the Do’s and Don’ts of Offering Suggestions in English

Learn the Do’s and Don’ts of Offering Suggestions in English

Are you an English student looking to learn how to offer suggestions and alternatives in a professional environment?

If so, this guide is for you! In this blog post, we’ll cover the do’s and don’ts of offering suggestions in English.

We’ll provide you with examples and phrases that you can use to make your language learning journey easier and more effective. Whether you’re starting out with English or already have some experience, this post will help you learn how to offer suggestions and alternatives in a polite and correct manner. So keep reading to find out more!

Do: Make your suggestions specific ✔️

When offering a suggestion in English, it’s important to make sure your suggestion is clear and specific.

This will help ensure that the recipient of your suggestion understands exactly what you are suggesting.

Here are some examples of how to make your suggestions more specific:

Instead of saying, “We should do something about this,” try saying, “Let’s brainstorm solutions for this issue.”
• Instead of saying, “I have an idea,” try saying, “What do you think about this suggestion?”
• Instead of saying, “We need to do something,” try saying, “What steps can we take to resolve this problem?”

Making your suggestions specific can help make sure they are heard and understood. Being specific will also make your suggestions sound more positive, as the recipient will be more likely to consider them.

asking politely. How to ask correctly written on a notepad.Do: Use let’s to make suggestions sound more collaborative ✔️

When you are making a suggestion or offering an alternative in a professional environment, it is important to make sure that your suggestion sounds collaborative and like a joint effort. Instead of using “you should” or “I suggest,” try using “let’s” to sound more professional.

For example,

instead of saying “You should try this,” say “Let’s try this.”

This will make it sound like you are both working together to come up with a solution. Similarly,

instead of saying “I suggest we do this,” say “Let’s do this.”

This will also make your suggestion sound like a team effort.

By using “let’s” when making suggestions, you will make it seem like the suggestion is something that you both agree on.

This will make your suggestion sound more confident and professional. It will also show that you are interested in working together with the other person to find a solution.

Do: Use positive phrasing ✔️

Using positive phrasing when making suggestions in English is an important part of communicating effectively.

You want to make sure that your ideas are heard and taken seriously, so make sure to use language that conveys respect and confidence.

For example, instead of saying

“I don’t think this will work,” try saying “This could be a great solution.”

“We might not have time for this,” try saying “We can prioritize this if it’s necessary.”

Using positive phrasing also shows a sense of optimism, which can help create a more positive atmosphere in the workplace. It can also help foster collaboration, as it encourages open dialogue between colleagues.
If you find yourself struggling to come up with positive phrasing in English, there are many online resources to help.

You can look up phrases to use in various contexts, as well as learn more about different approaches to giving constructive feedback. With practice and careful thought, you can develop the skill of offering suggestions in a professional yet positive manner.


Don’t: Overuse I think ❌

It is easy to use “I think” too often when making suggestions in English, especially when speaking with someone in a professional environment.

While it is important to be honest and transparent with your thoughts and opinions, overusing “I think” can give off the impression that you are unsure of yourself or not confident in what you’re saying. Instead of saying “I think we should do this,” try using “we should do this.”

This shows that you are confident in the suggestion you are making. Additionally, you can use phrases such as “it would be beneficial for us to…” or “this would be a great solution…” to avoid using “I think” too often.

Don’t: Apologize before making a suggestion❌

Apologizing before making a suggestion can make you sound less confident in your idea and make it appear as though you are not sure of yourself. Apologizing can also make your suggestion sound weaker or less valid. Therefore, it is best to avoid apologizing before making a suggestion in English.

When offering a suggestion in English, it is important to come across as polite and confident.

To do this, use the following expressions:

• “What do you think about…?”
• “I suggest… “
• “What if we…?”
• “Have you considered…?”
• “Would it be possible to…?”

By using these expressions, you can politely and confidently make a suggestion without apologizing beforehand. Doing so will show that you have thought about your suggestion carefully and are sure of its validity.

Cancelling Dinner Plans in English Easily. Written on a school board.Don’t: Use maybe too often ❌

Making suggestions in English can be tricky, and one of the pitfalls to avoid is overusing the word “maybe”. While the word can be useful to express tentative ideas or uncertainly, it can also be perceived as a sign of indecision.

If you want to express uncertainty in a more professional way, there are other words and phrases you can use.

For example, you can use expressions like

“I’m not sure” 

“It’s possible that”

To express uncertainty without using the word “maybe”.

Alternatively, you can also try using expressions such as “It could be” or “We could consider” to suggest an idea without committing to it.

Overall, being able to make suggestions in English with confidence and clarity is an important skill for any student. While it’s fine to use “maybe” on occasion, try to use more formal expressions when making suggestions in a professional environment.

This will show your colleagues and peers that you have the ability to express yourself with precision and clarity.

2 thoughts on “Learn the Do’s and Don’ts of Offering Suggestions in English

  1. Pingback: The Polite and Professional Way to Make Offers in Restaurants

  2. Pingback: Hospitality Employee? Here’s How to Politely Say No When You’re Pressed for Time

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