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My manager recently asked me "How are you doing? Everything OK?". I felt happy that he asked me that question, and felt that he was really concerned about me. I was doing well. So I told him that and followed it up with "Thanks for asking." Does the statement "Thanks for asking" sound rude (kind of like I don't need to tell you)? Is there a better way to express the expression or can you use your feelings to prove how you feel?

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    Spoken sincerely, there's nothing rude about “thanks for asking.” However, do note that some people use it sarcastically! – Bradd Szonye Aug 20 '13 at 10:36
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    Perhaps the full form, "Thank you for asking" being slightly more formal, is less likely to sound sarcastic. It's also important to note, that intonation will make it clear whether someone is genuinely pleased or pissed off! – Mari-Lou A Aug 20 '13 at 20:57
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    Out of interest, is there a reason you ask this? Did your manager seem a bit peeved or quizzical? – Dog Lover Jul 17 '16 at 23:19
  • It's only rude on SE. – Alan Carmack Jul 18 '16 at 5:58
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I find this to be a fairly common exchange in customer service (CS) situations (cashiers, waiters, telemarketers, and the like) these days:

CS: Hello, how are you doing today?

Me: Good, thanks, and you?

CS: I'm doing great, thank you for asking!

Apparently, the phrase "thank you for asking" is considered the height of customer service etiquette now.

So not only is saying, "thank you for asking" not rude, it's a form of politeness that's scripted often into customer service interactions.

  • As much as subconsciously I probably know it's scripted, I like to think they are doing it at their own will. – Dog Lover Jul 17 '16 at 23:21
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I'd rather place it among ironical phrases, with rudeness intended or not intended:

— Lend me a grand, dude?

— No such money on me, pal, but thanks for asking.

 

— I seem to have scratched your car a bit while trying to park… Are you okay?

— Well, not exactly, but thanks for asking.

If the person you're talking to doesn't expect any irony, I'd suggest that you choose some other similar phrase with no potential negative connotations.

As to the better way of expressing your gratitude, I think sincere 'I'm glad that you've asked me' will serve the best. Note that the brevity is your enemy here: even 'Thank you for asking' will be a fitter choice than 'Thanks for asking'.

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I can't imagine a rude phrase containing thank you but that is not so important. In oral conversations most of the politeness lays in the contexts.

If you wanted to answer more formally you should have used something like Thank you for being concerned, It is really very nice of you to ask me.

If it was more informal you can use some slang- Thanks I am mighty fine boss, I am feeling OK like fish in the ocean, I am pleased as a punch today.

It is OK to use Thank you for asking, it is informal. The expressions is not carrying any negative meaning BUT in my humble opinion it is very plain boring answer. Well trying to be social you can ask back: How about you boss ? and carry on a further conversation.

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    I would not say "pleased as a punch", but would omit the "a" in there. – GEdgar Aug 20 '13 at 12:03
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    I can imagine many rude setences with thank you. For example, thank you for being as big a fool as you look. Or a simple, ironic, thanks for your help to someone who has not helped etc. – terdon Aug 20 '13 at 12:45
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As others have said, when spoken sincerely it's a perfectly fine thing to say. But if you're worried that you will be mistaken for insincere, then there are other phrases like "thanks for your interest" or "thank you for taking the time to ask" that would seem less flip.

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