Useful business english phrases


The following phrases are used to participate in a meeting. These phrases are useful for expressing your ideas and giving input to a meeting.

Getting the Chairperson's Attention

  • (Mister/Madam) chairman.
  • May I have a word?
  • If I may, I think...
  • Excuse me for interrupting.
  • May I come in here?

Giving Opinions

  • I'm positive that...
  • I (really) feel that...
  • In my opinion...
  • The way I see things...
  • If you ask me,... I tend to think that...


Asking for Opinions

  • Are you positive that...
  • Do you (really) think that...
  • (name of participant) can we get your input?
  • How do you feel about...?


  • That's interesting.
  • I never thought about it that way before.
  • Good point!
  • I get your point.
  • I see what you mean.



  • I totally agree with you.
  • Exactly!
  • That's (exactly) the way I feel.
  • I have to agree with (name of participant).


  • Unfortunately, I see it differently.
  • Up to a point I agree with you, but...
  • I'm afraid I can't agree

Advising and Suggesting

  • Let's...
  • We should...
  • Why don't you....
  • How/What about...
  • I suggest/recommend that...


  • Have I made that clear?
  • Do you see what I'm getting at?
  • Let me put this another way...
  • I'd just like to repeat that...

Requesting Information

  • Please, could you...
  • I'd like you to...
  • Would you mind...
  • I wonder if you could...

Asking for Repetition

  • I'm afraid I didn't understand that. Could you repeat what you just said?
  • I didn't catch that. Could you repeat that, please?
  • I missed that. Could you say it again, please?

Asking for Clarification

  • I don't quite follow you. What exactly do you mean?
  • I'm afraid I don't quite understand what you are getting at.
  • Could you explain to me how that is going to work?
  • I don't see what you mean. Could we have some more details, please?

Asking for Verification

  • You did say next week, didn't you? ("did" is stressed)
  • Do you mean that...?
  • Is it true that...?

Asking for Contributions

  • We haven't heard from you yet, (name of participant).
  • What do you think about this proposal?
  • Would you like to add anything, (name of participant)?
  • Has anyone else got anything to contribute?
  • Are there any more comments?

Correcting Information

  • Sorry, I think you misunderstood what I said.
  • Sorry, that's not quite right.
  • I'm afraid you don't understand what I'm saying.
  • That's not quite what I had in mind.
  • That's not what I meant.

Keeping the Meeting On Target (time, relevance, decisions)

  • We're running short of time.
  • Well, that seems to be all the time we have today.
  • Please be brief.
  • I'm afraid we've run out of time.
  • I'm afraid that's outside the scope of this meeting.
  • Let's get back on track, why don't we?
  • That's not really why we're here today.
  • Why don't we return to the main focus of today's meeting?
  • We'll have to leave that to another time.
  • We're beginning to lose sight of the main point.
  • Keep to the point, please.
  • I think we'd better leave that for another meeting.
  • Are we ready to make a decision?

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