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Is It Correct to Say “It’s My Pleasure”?

When we lend a helping hand to someone, we receive a genuine thank you from them. It is lovely to respond to their thanks with a phrase that lets them know we are happy to help them. So is it correct to say, “It’s my pleasure” in these scenarios?

It is correct to say “It’s my pleasure” as a polite and genuine response to someone who thanks you for something you did for them. “It’s my pleasure” is a complete sentence by itself, also known as a major sentence. It works better in formal situations than in informal or casual conversations.

We will learn more about this sentence, its meaning, and how we use it. In addition, we will also look into understanding major sentences and how to identify them.

What Does “It’s My Pleasure” Mean?

“It’s my pleasure” is an expression you can use in response to someone thanking you. It is a polite way to convey that you were happy to help them (source). “Pleasure” here refers to the feeling of happiness and enjoyment (source).

“It’s my pleasure” is a common courtesy expression you use when someone thanks you for something. You can also use “It’s a pleasure” or just the words “My pleasure” as a minor sentence instead to convey the same meaning. 

When you use this sentence in response to “Thank you,” you are saying that you were actually happy to assist the person who thanked you. It also conveys that you are not expecting thanks and do not require any other compensation for your help. You are also telling them you will lend them a helping hand again without issue.

How Do You Use “It’s My Pleasure”?

You use “It’s my pleasure” as a polite way of responding to someone who thanks you for something you did. This sentence is better in formal situations, like responding to a colleague or boss, or when working in the service industry to respond to thanks from customers. It is a complete sentence by itself, also known as a major sentence. 

A complete or major sentence consists of a subject and a predicate, as in the sentence “It’s my pleasure.” Here, “my” is the subject, and the remaining words form the predicate. 

Note that the “It’s” expansion in a written conversation will be evident from the context. It can refer to either “It is” or “It was,” depending on the situation. While speaking to someone, we always tend to speak out the expanded form, and we will use either one – “It is” or “It was” – once again, depending on context. 

For example, if someone thanks you for something you did previously, you would respond with, “It was my pleasure.” However, when someone thanks you for something you just did or committed to do soon, you can respond with, “It is my pleasure.”

When Can You Use “It’s My Pleasure”?

You can use “It’s my pleasure” in replying to someone who thanks you for your help to let them know you were happy to lend them assistance. While you can use it in formal and casual conversations, it is better suited to a more formal situation than in informal ones. 

Image by Al Elmes via Unsplash

This is a polite and respectful way of responding to thanks: you appreciate their gratitude and feel happy to lend a helping hand. It implies that you enjoyed being of help and it did not trouble you in any way.

There are many opportunities to use “It’s my pleasure.” Let us look at some example scenarios below.

Many American services and food service companies require their employees to say, “It’s my pleasure,” when customers thank them. Customer service representatives use this expression in emails, chats, and phone calls to respond to a “Thank you” from their customers. 

Consider this scenario. You are hosting a party, and your guests thank you for a wonderful dinner. You can respond with “It’s my pleasure!” to let them know that you loved doing all the things needed to make the party happen because you enjoyed having them over.

Maybe you are a guest at another event and help the host set up the table or clear the table after dinner because you love those tasks and also feel happy contributing in some way. So when the host thanks you for your help, you can genuinely respond with, “It’s my pleasure!”

Using “It’s My Pleasure” in a Full Sentence

You can use “It’s my pleasure” as a statement by itself. It is a complete sentence and needs no additions or updates. You only use it in response to a statement of thanks from someone. However, you can add some details to confirm what specific tasks you were happy doing to help someone.

Let’s look at some examples of this:

  • It’s my pleasure to help you finish painting this stunning mural today!
  • Billy is such a sweet kid! It’s my pleasure to have him join us on our trip!
  • We wanted to do something special for you, so it’s our pleasure to host this party!

We also use this sentence as the beginning of sentences not responding to a “Thank you,” where the speaker is talking about something else that made or will make them happy. 

Consider this familiar statement from someone speaking to a large audience and welcoming someone else:

  • It’s my pleasure to introduce you to Professor Barnes of Liberty University.

We also use this when meeting someone we have heard of before for the first time. If we have heard excellent things about the person and were eager to eat them, we would most likely say something like the following when we finally meet them in person:

  • It’s a pleasure to meet you!

When Not to Use “It’s My Pleasure”

Do not use “It’s my pleasure” after doing a helpful act but before you have received a “Thank you.” It will sound pretentious at most and awkward at best. Also, refrain from using it in casual conversations with family and friends, as this sentence sounds too formal for these situations.

While it is not wrong to use “It’s my pleasure” in response to thanks from a friend, it can sound awkward since we tend to have a more informal relationship with friends and family. We can also try to use alternate options in everyday situations like the scenario below:

You have just let someone get ahead of you in line at the supermarket because you see that the lady is with her kids and only has a few items in her cart. She gratefully says, “Thank you.” In this scenario, responding with a simple “Of course!” or “You’re welcome” works best. 

What Can You Use Instead of “It’s My Pleasure”?

While “It’s my pleasure” is a polite way to respond to thanks, it is also too formal to use in all situations. In casual conversations with friends, family members, or other informal situations, we should consider other ways to respond to “Thank you.” Sometimes, we just need a different way of saying we enjoyed helping, even in a formal setting.

Image by Nick Fewings via Unsplash

Here are a few alternative phrases and sentences to use when you want to say something other than “It’s my pleasure.”

  • I am glad to be of help.
  • My pleasure!
  • You’re welcome.
  • I enjoyed doing it!
  • The pleasure was all mine!
  • I am/was happy to help.
  • It’s indeed my pleasure!
  • No worries.
  • Not a problem!
  • Loved being a part of this!

Major Sentences

A major sentence is a complete or regular sentence that is either just an independent clause or contains an independent clause with additional information (source). An independent clause is a complete thought, which includes both a subject and a predicate, and can exist by itself (source).

“It’s my pleasure” is an independent clause, and it follows that it is a major or regular sentence as well. 

Conversely, minor sentences do not have either a subject or a predicate, but we often use them as is. The missing part of the minor sentence is understood or implied, as in the following phrases we often use in response to “Thank you.”

  • “My pleasure” – Here, the verb “it’s” is understood.
  • “Welcome” – In this case, we know the subject is “You’re.” 

It is always better to use major sentences in formal conversations or writings, while minor sentences work great for casual conversations.

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Check our article Is It Correct to Say “You’re Welcome”? for more expressions of responses to “thanks” and to understand more about sentence types. 

Final Thoughts

When you help someone, you almost always do it simply because they need help. However, you almost always realize that you enjoy being of assistance too, and you get genuine pleasure in doing the required tasks!

Saying “It’s my pleasure” in response to a statement of thanks from someone you have helped is a natural response we mainly use in semiformal or formal settings. We prefer “Of course!” or “No problem!” in casual conversation.

Now that you know more about this sentence, I am sure you are getting ready to say “Thank you” to the writer of this article. So, in advance, here is my response to that thanks: “It’s my pleasure!”