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Making a proposal

  • We suggest/propose…
  • Our proposal is…
  • What we’re looking for is…
  • We would like to put this forward for your consideration.
  • We’d like…
  • Could you consider…?

 

Asking for clarification

  • I’m not sure I follow you. Did you say that…? Are you saying that…?
  • In what way…?
  • Sorry, I’m not sure I understand?
  • If I understand you correctly, you will be ready next week.
  • Can you please run that by me once again.
  • Are you implying/suggesting that…?
  • If I follow you correctly, you would like us to double-check the figures.
  • Sorry, can you repeat that last point once again for me please?

 

Clarifying the issue

  • As far as I can see, the main issue is…
  • I think the important issue here is…
  • It seems to us that the real issue is…
  • Well, from a legal point of view, these negotiations are about…

 

Interrupting politely

  • If I can just stop you for a moment…
  • Sorry to interrupt you but…
  • Sorry, can I just say that…

 

Referring back

  • As you were saying earlier…
  • To go back to what I was saying earlier…
  • To go back to what Maria was saying…

 

Expressing disagreement

  • I’m afraid we can’t go along with…
  • That would be difficult for us.
  • I’m not sure I entirely agree with you on that.
  • As it stands, I can’t take that back to my client.

 

Expressing disagreement strongly

  • I’m afraid that’s out of the question.
  • We simply could not accept…
  • There is no way we can agree to that.
  • My client would never agree to that.
  • Let me be perfectly clear – that proposal is unacceptable.

 

Expressing understanding of a position, but adding an opposing view

  • We fully understand the reasoning behind that, but…
  • I suppose that could be true, but you have to look at the bigger picture.
  • That may be the case, but…
  • I see your point. However…
  • Possibly, but…
  • Yes, but that’s only one side of the problem.
  • Yes, but you have to look at it another way, too.

 

Moving towards a compromise

  • If you could consider….we’d be willing to be more flexible about…
  • That’s certainly a step in the right direction.
  • My client might be willing to…if your client would…
  • If your client would be willing to…I could recommend to my client to…

 

Expressing agreement

  • Yes, you have a point there.
  • Let’s agree on….shall we?
  • I think we could live with that.
  • It’s a deal!