There's plenty of advice on key words and phrases to use during interviews and other professional settings, but there's one word that you should avoid at all costs.

According to an article on, the word "actually" doesn't do you any favors.

They say that using "actually" might cause people to question what you said, or even not trust the statement. Many people throw the word in as a pause in a sentence, like saying "um", except in more specific situations. In this case, "actually" isn't necessary, it doesn't add any depth or extra information to a statement.

The Time article also lists an example of a salesperson asking someone else if they had used a product. When they respond "Actually, I have," it suggests that it might be a surprise that they had used the product, or that perhaps they hadn't really used it.

If you look at the definition of "actually" it reflects these same ideas. When you want others to trust a product, throwing in the foul word emphasizes the wrong idea about your product or statement, which you don't want when trying to convince people.

So, whether you're a buyer or a seller you can use this info to look out for the word, and don't forget to actually avoid it!