The Use of Superlatives and Hyperbole

In my business I am wrestling with the use of superlatives. My friend Merriam-Webster defines a superlative as "of, relating to, or constituting the degree of grammatical comparison that denotes an extreme or unsurpassed level or extent."

I define superlatives better than Merriam. I define a superlative as lazy thinking that makes the person use words that makes the person sound arrogant and abrasive.

Here is one I run into a lot: we are "uniquely positioned."  I am a little concerned that we sound like a contortionist or worse: a sexual acrobat. I am not sure a client wants to do business with an organization that is "uniquely positioned to provide the best services to meet the needs of XYZ-client organization."

Here is another: "we are best-in-class." Are we at the Westminister Dog Kennel Show?

Think twice when you write hyperbolic superlatives. And at the end of thinking twice, realize you are not selling your services, yourself or your firm. Find the real reason the client should use you.

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