Monday, 22 November 2010

Business Speak

I bloody hate it. Here are my pet peeves:

Elevate. What am I, a lift? This just means asking someone higher up, which leads us to:

The food chain. Nice. This is the sort of thing mentioned by people who rate themselves as sharks or tigers as opposed to plankton. No one would rate themselves as plankton. Even plankton itself, if it had an option, probably wouldn’t rate itself as plankton. People that use ‘the food chain’ often also use:

Cascade. E.g. cascading information up and down ‘the food chain’. (Although usually 'down' as, from what we have seen above, folk who use this like to think of themselves as sharks rather than mere worker plankton.) Whenever I hear the word 'cascade' I wonder what happened to the word ‘tell’? How about ‘distribute’? But people like to cascade information in relation to:

Forward Planning. How can planning be anything other than forward? Backward planning doesn’t really work. I wish I could backward plan not to have drank quite so much on Saturday night but wishing it won’t make the Day of Woe (Sunday) go away. This is also linked in with:

Pre-planning. Please don’t ever go there, either. A plan before the plan? Purlease. Although maybe they are making sure they are:

Sweating the Asset. What a pretty picture this conjures in my mind. A big hairy sweaty ass (arse). Thanks for that. When it comes to assets, people may also think about:

Leverage. For the love of plain speaking, why can’t folk say they are going to ‘use’ or ‘take advantage’ of their contacts as opposed to ‘leveraging’ them? Leverage sounds like something people do with a crow bar. Although when it comes to plain speaking, it appears business speak folk do not have:

Visibility. Used in sentences such as ‘I don’t have visibility of that issue/email/system/thing.’ Actually means ‘I don’t know’. Whenever someone says they don’t have visibility, my head will automatically translate this to mean they know nothing at all about anything. This will be further reinforced if they proceed to:

Speak in abbreviations. WTF?

Any more for any more?

25 comments:

Lindsay said...

Brilliant post. I loathe all these ridiculous terms, along with all the tired old ones: glass celings, thinking outside the box, and a host of others. It seems to originate from people trying to be clever and other people thinking they are clever to copy!

Old Kitty said...

"Corporate Mission Statement"!

Like I'm working for some mind controlling sect..!! LOL! Take care
x

Kathy said...

OH MY GOSH!! DO YOU WORK WHERE I WORK??? The only thing you missed is that we not only "elevate" . . . we must "elevate and sustain" . . . on our "journey to excellence," no less!! ARGH!!

Carole Anne Carr said...

My pet hate is 'at this moment in time' grrrrr!

Rose said...

blue sky thinking, micro management, 'ping' over an email, open it up to the floor or for discussion, AOB for any other business because we are all too busy to say three words, pretty much everything

also did you watch I'm a Celebrity last night as the only question that anyone seems to be able to ask that isn't work related

Melissa Sarno said...

I LOVE this post! I hate it when people use business speak. People in my office often use the term 'let's take a double path' meaning, let's do twice as much work in half the time in the hopes that one of our 'paths' will be the right one, instead of focusing on one path and doing it right. I want to kill myself when I hear that term.

Olivia J. Herrell said...

Loved this. You made me sooooo glad to be out of the corporate world.

Thanks! that rebel, Olivia

Talli Roland said...

Sweating the asset? I haven't heard that one, thank God!

I had a marketing boss who always said 'at the end of the day blah blah blah...' It used to drive me CRAZY! I can still hear him saying that.

I also hate 'ease of use'. Ergh! And you've already mentioned 'leverage'.

Oh the memories...

fairyhedgehog said...

Leverage is my pet hate because it was the one I came up against most when I was working.

Mind you, counselling has it's own vocabulary, some of which makes me cringe. I absolutely hate "How do you feel about that?"

Fran said...

I'm sorry, but I have to flag up the fact that flag up is just the worst phrase. Also, I don't like the 'it's coming online ...' thing, when it's nothing to do with computers. Yuk.

Ann said...

ROARED with laughter. My husband will occasionally bring his corporate speak home. Not good. My most hated is 'action' as in let's action that. How about we 'do' it instead?

Colene Murphy said...

Perfect post! Couldn't agree more. ("sweating the asset" made me snort. Totally pictured that too.)

Joanna St. James said...

here is my current pet peeve "mummy! mummy! mummy!" said by the same kid hours on end, I have to shudder b4 i turn on my corporate charm and say "yes my love".
P.S they have to know these words irk people out?

Len said...

LOL! I love this post! Aren't these corporate words that you use when you strategically pre-plan the vision for the company to be able to leverage the asset? Haha, Just kidding. This really made me laugh because it reminded me of Sophie Kinsella's book which I just finished reading, 'Can You Keep A Secret.' It's hilarious. They also have these words in there. Yes, they can drive you crazy. Very nice post, I enjoyed reading it! :)

Holly Ruggiero said...

Those are so great. Pre-plan I never thought about how inane that was.

Wendy aka Quillfeather said...

"Leverage sounds like something people do with a crow bar."

Love it!

Excellent post.

Linda said...

Ahh - I agree - hate all of the above - its just an attempt to "keep us all singing from the same hymm sheet"!

And its just like watching an episode of The Apprentice - do some of those people esp the men (or boys) in the latest series realise just how stupid they sound?

Linda

Jenny Beattie said...

Yes, all of them... deeply irritating.

Rachna Chhabria said...

Great post, Jayne. Most of these are my pet hates too.

Eliza said...

The NHS is using all this rubbish now! I'm having to deal with a lot of it now. Drives me INSANE!

Hart Johnson said...

*giggles* I left advertising in 1991 to go to grad school in the social sciences. I feel like perhaps I got out just in the nick of time...

Happy Frog and I said...

Crickey! I have been spared such awful phrases recently but I am sure I will end up getting stuck with it again soon. Yuk!

Shayda Bakhshi said...

I'm guilty of pre-planning. Although I call it procrastination. :)

Christine said...

Amused, but shuddering. I'm so glad I escaped.

My pet hate was when a big cheese would say 'let's just park that for now'. He wasn't referring to a car.

I also disliked ball-park figures, thought showers, blue-sky thinking and the phrase 'give me a heads up'.

Poodle Dog said...

Perfectly written! please email a copy to my boss! (Sorry for the random comment without even a hello, I cam across your blog by chance and couldn't resist agreeing :D )