Lets face it communication is difficult enough without attempting to create a whole new language.
It would appear, however, this is what we are doing, and to whose benefit exactly ?!?
For me I suppose it all started when someone told me that we should ‘Think Outside the Box’. Myself and my team looked at each other, not fully understanding what this meant, I’m still not sure I do. It started to irk me even more when it was apparent that neither did the person using this phrase.
Since then some of my ‘favorites’ have been ‘Eating Your Own Dogfood’, ‘Peel Back The Onion’, ‘Holistic’, ‘Co-opetition’ and ‘Drinking the Kool-Aid.
The recent word that gets me twitching is ‘Socializing’. Give me the power and anyone who uses Socializing is going to endure a lengthy prison sentence.
I was at a conference a little while back and I was sitting next to a few guys who were passing the time playing ‘ Buzz Word Bingo’. Like normal bingo, but with buzzwords rather than numbers. They referred to it as Bulls^*# Bingo as that sounded more appropriate.
When many of these pointless additions to the language are casually thrown into a meeting, there are great many in attendance who have no idea what they mean. Ironically, there is almost a stigma that you cannot ask either, lest be thought of as not keeping up, or somehow a lesser business being.
I’m pretty sure the numbers of people who know the actual meaning of the word ‘Strategic’ versus those who seem to use it in every other sentence would be inversely proportionate.
Those who use them sound like they are trying to overcompensate or that there is a lack of substance or create complexity. I cannot think of a time when in business or life in general where you would want to make things more difficult.
For me and many of my colleagues, if the world needs to have a war or anything, its on Buzzwords and those who use them.