March MADness: “But . . .” vs. “Well, actually . . .”

For this match up, we’re coming back to in-person communication faux pas. No one enjoys a contrarian. Similarly, no one enjoys a know-it-all, but which is worse?

“But . . .”

This is the key phrase of the contrarian. For this person, nothing anyone else says is quite good enough and there is always a flaw, which they insist on highlighting.

“Well, actually . . .”

This phrase is the hallmark of a know-it-all. With a penchant for perfection and an inability to filter relevant details from irrelevant ones, this person never misses an opportunity to correct or clarify themselves and others.

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