Say What You Mean – It is what it is


Prior briefings discussed “Junk Words and Phrases” and how you should focus on eliminating them from your vocabulary and from all customer communications. Remember that Junk Words and Phrases are just extra words that creep into our language, but they provide no context or meaning. Without them, your verbal communication will just sound clearer and more professional.


Here’s another one for you: “It is what it is” is a junk phrase that has crept into the business world from more informal social conversations.  


In the business world, this is usually an affirmative response to sum up a situation where you can’t think of anything else to say, such as the following: 


“We won’t be able to schedule that meeting until next month. 


“Sigh, Well, it is what it is.”


“It is what it is?” Really? Of course it is! What else could it be? How could “it” be anything different than what “it” already is?


Unfortunately, this meaningless, nonsensical phase is a complete waste of words and serves absolutely no purpose. 


If you are trying to sound smarter by spouting this junk phrase, it probably won’t work. 


Instead: Just skip it. Silence is a much better choice. 


When interacting with customers, junk phrases like this are a complete waste of oxygen. It makes you sound unsure of yourself, like you have nothing else to say. Either come up with a better response. Or say nothing. 


Next time you are tempted to blurt out “it is what it is”, remember that it’s a Junk Phrase that should be stricken from your vocabulary. 


I’m DJ Sebastian. To learn more about what it takes to Become a Great Communicator, visit my website at