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12 maddening bits of corporate jargon that need to go to Hell

By / 01.09.14
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annoying-corporate-jargon

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Jargon came from a need to define certain job or workplace specific systems and practices. It isn't without its use, and yet, an entire sub-culture of obnoxious language has risen from it. And in turn it has given pompous executives a language to exercise their dominance over their underlings and those underlings a way to feel more important than they really are. Here are some of the worst bits of corporate jargon. What are your most hated words or phrases in the corporate world?

best-in-breed

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What it means: The best type of software/platform/system etc. of a certain type.

What it really means: Business to business marketing term to make people think yours is the best just because you say it is.

What it makes me want to do: Get a dog, groom the hell out of it and enter it into a dog show.

box

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What it means: Being a creative problem-solver.

What it really means: Going against what you're told all the time about following rules and being a team player without getting in trouble because you magically did it at the exact right time concerning the exact problem at hand and actually received credit for it.

What it makes me want to do: Eat a crunch-wrap.

touching

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What it means: Communicate or meet with.

What it really means: Having a formulaic conversation replete with forced pleasantries and very little actual accomplishment.

What it makes me want to do: Protect my base and keep it from touching anything or anyone in my professional life.

offline

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What it means: Not online.

What it really means: Communicate with someone or review information *gulp* without the use of the Internet.

What it makes me want to do: Go online.

repurpose

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What it means: To give something old a new purpose.

What it really means: To modify existing work rather than create something brand new.

What it makes me want to do: Exactly that.

leverage

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What it means: It used to have a financial meaning, but now is just meant to gain an advantage or improve in some way.

What it really means: It's used so much that it can pretty much mean anything now.

What it makes me want to do: Leverage my fist into someone's face.

bandwidth

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What it means: Time or ability to complete work.

What it really means: Time that is not spent checking Facebook to complete work.

What it makes me want to do: Download many, many torrents at once to show how much bandwidth I have.

delegate

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What it means: Give a task to another to complete.

What it really means: Frees the delegate-er up to do important things like talk about work at meetings instead of actually doing work.

What it makes me want to do: Delegate all of my work so I won't have to, you know, do any work.

future

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What it means: Describes something that can't become obsolete.

What it really means: Absolutely nothing is future-proof; this is, in essence, idiocy at best and an orchestrated lie at worst.

What it makes me want to do: Invest in Beta-max.

marinate

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What it means: Think about for a while.

What it really means: Someone is incapable of making a decision and needs to sleep on it - possibly for months.

What it makes me want to do: Make a steak.

table

Table image by Shutterstock


What it means: Put aside for now.

What it really means: It's not important and it may never be important.

What it makes me want to do: Ask why a table is being used to store things, when clearly a pantry, closet, storeroom or basement would be a far better choice.

running

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What it means: Learn something quickly.

What it really means: The person asking for this really just wants someone they don't have to spend the time to explain things to.

What it makes me want to do: Run them into the ground.

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