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Asking for and giving opinions

When chatting to our family and friends, or in more formal situations, when conversing with our colleagues or business partners, we tend to express our opinion quite a lot. This is so because we do not always discuss facts, but rather offer our view on a variety of subjects. Sometimes we are asked for our opinion, at other times we express it without being asked, and it also happens that we want to let someone know indirectly what our point of view is.

The most obvious ways of offering an opinion is to start the sentence with:

  • I think (that) this is his best book so far.
  • Personally, I think (that) he should accept that job offer.
  • I believe (that) we can improve the business result.
  • In my opinion, customer will like the green one better.
  • In my view, newsletters should be sent monthly.
  • From my point of view, the results speak for themselves
  • For me, this is the best restaurant in the city.

You may use these phrases in both written and spoken English. In everyday English conversation, on the other hand, you might hear less formal and also less direct phrases, for instance:

  • I feel (that) she will be a great singer one day.
  • I suppose (that) he will resign now after the scandal.
  • I reckon (that) we’ll be there by 8.
  • If you ask me, they should’ve given us a discount.
  • If I were (you, him, her,…), I would ask again.
  • As far as I’m concerned, TV ads won’t work for this brand.
  • To my mind this product is too expensive.
  • To be honest (with you), this colour doesn’t suit you.

Of course, you might also NOT agree, in which case you can start with:

  •  I don’t think (that) his party can win the elections.
  • I don’t believe (that) the market will bounce back.

Apart from expressing our own opinion, we might be interested in what other people have to say. In that case we will ask:

  • What do you think about the new PM?
  • Do you think (that) he’s the right person for this job?
  • Do you believe (that) our team can actually win?
  • What’s your position on Brexit?
  • What’s your opinion on this issue?
  • What is, in your opinion, the best way to sustain profitability in the long run?
  • In your experience, which venue is more suitable for the conference?
  • What are your views on the EU referendum?
  • Do you have any views on this matter?
  • From your point of view, what are the benefits of lifelong learning?
  • What do you reckon?

Autor: Jasminka Šturlić, prof. engleskog i talijanskog





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