Useful English Phrases for a Business Meeting

You can further explore useful phrases and proper language usage by looking at a meeting dialogue. During a meeting you might want to have a phrase reference sheet nearby to help conduct the meeting.

Use the following phrases to interrupt or join in the conversation:

May I have a word?
If I may, I think…
Excuse me for interrupting.

Giving Opinions
These phrases will give your opinion during a meeting:

I (really) feel that…
In my opinion…
The way I see things…

Asking for Opinions
These questions will help you ask for feedback and opinions during a conversation:

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

Commenting on Opinions
Use these phrases to show that you are carefully listening:

I’ve never thought about it that way before.
Good point!
I get your point.
I see what you mean.

Agreeing With Other Opinions
If you agree with what has been said, use these phrases to add your voice in agreement:

That’s (exactly) the way I feel.
I have to agree with (name of participant).

Disagreeing With Other Opinions
Sometimes we have to disagree with others. These phrases are used to be polite, but firm when disagreeing:

Up to a point I agree with you, but…
(I’m afraid) I can’t agree.

Advising and Suggesting
These phrases can be used to advise or make a suggestion during a meeting:

We should…
Why don’t you….
How/What about…
I suggest/recommend that…

Sometimes it’s important to clarify what you’ve said. That might mean that you need to rephrase your point in other words. Use these phrases to help clarify:

(Statement) Have I made that clear?
(Statement) Do you see what I’m getting at?
Let me put this another way (statement)
I’d just like to repeat that (statement)

Asking for Repetition
If you don’t understand what’s been said, use one of these phrases:

I didn’t catch that. Could you repeat that, please?
I missed that. Could you say it again, please?
Could you run that by me one more time?

Asking for Clarification
If you’d like to check on some of the details, use these phrases to ask for more details and get clarification:

I’m afraid I don’t understand what your 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 Contributions From Other Participants
You can ask for more feedback by directly asking whether others have something else to contribute with these phrases:

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
At times, it’s necessary to correct what someone else has said if it’s vital to the conversation. Use these phrases to correct information:

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 Time
Finally, it’s common to go too long. These phrases can help keep the meeting on time:

Please be brief.
I’m afraid that’s outside the scope of this meeting.
Let’s get back on track, why don’t we?
Why don’t we return to the main focus of today’s meeting.
Keep to the point, please.