Anyway, today at work I had a run-in with the pants-crappingly awful world of corporatespeak (read: meeting) and I made a useful and informative list about words that came up in the meeting.
Ten Most Douchebaggy Corporatespeak Phrases
10. Touch Base
"Let's touch base on this in a week or so."
I have an innate resistance to saying 'touch base' because in my (perhaps somewhat puerile) mind it makes me think of 'getting past first base' and now every time someone says, "Let's touch base!" I get all excited then remember they just mean "discuss this again in a bit." Such a let-down.
Better: "Let's catch up in a week or so."
Way better: "Let's touch boob in a week or so."
"It's one of the publications in our stable."
If newspapers were horses, saying 'stable' would make sense. Also if newspapers were horses beggars would wrap themselves in old ones for warmth. But they are not, so I'm not sure why we talk about them like they are.
Better: "It's one of the publications in our group."
Way better: "It's one of the publications in our coop."
"We were down an FTE on Thursday, Max was sick."
Quick! What's the ETA on the FTE for the OOS seminar? And the USP for the MMP? And the GST on the RRP? OMG OMG LOL! Fuck off, work acronyms. FTE is representing all of the work acronyms on this list because it is the most annoying and also far fewer people know what it means than management assume. (Full time employee.)
Better: "We were down a person on Thursday. Max was sick."
Way better: "We were down a WTF on Thursday. Max was sick." (WTF, here, stands for Works Totally Fulltime.)
"Can you action this?"
I know I've whinged about this before, but action is not a verb. It just isn't. Nothing is going to change that. Just because you are important businessman does not mean you can verb words.
Better: "Can you do this?"
Way better: "Can you job this?"
6. Moving Forward
"Moving forward, we aim to increase sales by 50%."
See also 'going forward.' I know that saying 'in the future' is boring, but can we at least make the replacement something super-motivational? Something like 'charging valiantly into the second financial quarter,' or 'zooming into the March sales period.' Then I would be more excited moving forward.
Better: "In the future, we aim to increase sales by 50%."
Way better: "Taking it to the street, we aim to increase sales by 50%."
5. Buy-in and take-out
"The main take-out is that we need more buy-in."
I think that it is fine to say buy-in when someone is actually buying in with actual real cold hard dollar$. I think it is fine to say take-out when you are contemplating getting Chinese. I do not think it is appropriate to say these things in the quarterly advertising meeting, unless we are getting Chinese and you are going to give me some money.
Better: "The main point is that we need more market support."
Way better: "The main takeaway is that we need to eat here."
"I have been out prospecting."
This is probably a sales thing, but when people call on a business and try to sell them
Better: "I have been out selling."
Way better: "I have been out clienting."
"Managers, please cascade."
Are we are a workplace or a fountain of champagne glasses? Oh please. A cascade should be a word reserved for something magnificent, like a waterfall or a Rapunzel's hair or perhaps a shower of diamonds. It should not be used to refer to the single, lonely click of your managerial mouse on the 'forward' button. One click does not make a cascade.
Better: "Managers, please pass on to your teams."
Way better: "Managers, please champagne fountain this."
"This customer has been recently onboarded."
Let's trace this back to its disgusting grammatical roots: when you bring a customer on board you are onboarding them, and they have been onboarded from whichever company they previously worked with. Extend this, and you get sentences like "I walked across the tarmac and the plane onboarded me." I can't believe this heinous phrase has been onboarded.
Better: "This customer has recently come across to the company."
Way better: "This customer has been recently hijacked."
"I've diarised it."
Because heaven forbid I could write it in my diary! Don't be ridiculous. I am a business person. I don't put things in my diary, I diarise them. I don't put petrol in my car, I gaserise. I don't make love. I sexerise.
Better: "I've put it in my diary."
Way better: "I've schedulerised Tuesday's ten o'clock."
So here's the most douchebaggy corporatespeak sentence ever. You're welcome.
I hope you diarised a touch-base to action the onboarding of more FTEs, because it has been cascaded that the main take-out from recent prospecting is that our stable needs more market buy-in moving forward.
And now I am now going to pyjamarise and snoozerise.