View Full Version : Is there a polite way to say "half-assed"?

01-11-2014, 12:08 AM
I've run into this about ten times in the past couple of months. In supervising this one person, I keep wanting to tell them to "quit doing it half-assed", but I can't say half-assed, so I keep kind of stuttering over the end part. As such, they keep doing it half-assed. Is there a more polite idiom which captures the same level of vitriol without being vulgar?

Shyria Dracnoir
01-11-2014, 01:38 AM
"Quit doing it fucking half way"

01-11-2014, 02:01 AM
"If you're gonna do something at all, do it right and see it through."

01-11-2014, 02:04 PM
"partially gluteused"

01-11-2014, 02:27 PM
"Half-cocked". Wait, that's not less vulgar at all. "Quasi-serious." "Professionally questionable." "Dilettante work." "Unfocused." "An optimist may say you're doing this half right, but you still have to hold reelections for your brain president cause he's got to be drunk at the job if he thinks he can get away with doing it 50% wrong." The syntax may wary depending on what exactly they're doing and what they're doing wrong.

01-11-2014, 05:05 PM
Here are some possible phrases to convey the same kind of meaning without the use of "assed", as I sit and click respond and think a little:

Please be more thorough in your work.

Do more than minimal effort.

Your work is too haphazard / hit-or-miss / hurried / shallow.

Be more critical in your work.

Your work lacks the professional standard/quality it could have/should have.

Maybe work from one of these or something similar.

Edit: As a supervisor you can spin it more positively than just making it a negative, if you feel that would help. For example, you might note that the work is completed and getting done and how that is a good thing, but then emphasize that its quality is insufficient or there are definitely elements that need to be improved.

01-11-2014, 08:52 PM
So, i work with Safety at the work place. Being a safety technician and all... and quite often i have to tell people to do things in a certain way that is not a violation of labor and safety regulations AND that might save their lives or prevent injuries... as you might imagine, it is not uncommon to find people who think their way is better or faster or "i'll just be careful".

So, since i need these people to actually take in my advice, sometimes you have to tell them to stop doing stupid bullshit in a nice way... like this one that just happened this past friday where i had to say things on the line of "Hey man, i'm glad you are dedicated to the task at your job, but when you have scrub rust out of metal platting on the floor, i can't have you on your knees 8 hours straight per day..." when in reality what i wanted to say was "Dude i know you want to finish your work, but that was just you being goddamn stupid..."

do you want to be positive about it?

"this is ok, but i know you can do better than this. You have before."

You want to be assertive/firm but professional about it?

"Dude, don't drop the ball. you gotta follow through with this. i know you can, but this is not there yet."

Or if you want to be extra political about it...

"Ok, but there is room for improvement here..."

Or political and authoritary at the same time

"There is room for improvement here... please take a look at X and maybe Y too"

all and all, never hurts to follow through with a "If you need help with any of this or if you have any doubts, just let me know. But get back to me after you have given this a second look."

All of these can work as a motivational platform to talk with someone, but it really depends on the personality of the person and the mood of the work environment.

Satan's Onion
01-12-2014, 03:29 AM
"I for one can tell when you cut corners, sunshine. Next time, take care to add a smidge of effort so it at least looks like you care about doing it right."

Bum Bill Bee
01-15-2014, 11:04 AM
I'd just call it "half-arsed" or maybe "half-baked". It would all depend on the context.

01-15-2014, 01:20 PM
Using a politer term of half-assed is half-assed. Do it full-assed with the half-ass or don't bother assin' at all!

01-16-2014, 07:51 PM
"You need to use both cheeks"

01-18-2014, 01:42 PM
Hah, thanks guys. It wasn't as big a deal as some of you may have thought, sorry if I gave that impression, but it did make me wonder what alternatives for "half-assed" there are. I think I settled for "shoddy", but I did try to emphasize what they were doing right before complaining about the half-assed-ness.

"You need to use both cheeks"

Bart: No offense, Homer, but your half-assed underparenting was a lot more fun than your half-assed overparenting.

Homer: But I'm using my whole ass!