|Photo from Idea Go|
“When business or industry terms become overused, people stop paying attention to them,” said Max Messmer, chairman of Accountemps. “The best communicators use clear and straightforward language that directly illustrates their points.”
The market and workplace is overwrought with clichés, buzzwords and industry jargon, often leading to a “disconnect” between coworkers and buyers. A survey, funded by Accontemps, was conducted by an independent research firm - telephone interviews with 150 senior executives from the nation’s 1,000 largest companies. Executives were asked, “What is the most annoying or overused phrase or buzzword?” Their responses included:
- Leverage: As in, “We intend to leverage our investment in IT infrastructure across multiple business units to drive profits.”
- Reach out: As in, “We consistently reach out to customers impacted by the change....”
- Viral: As in, “Our video has gone viral.”
- Game changer: As in, “Transitioning from products to solutions was a game changer for our company.”
- Disconnect: As in, “There is a disconnect between what the consumer wants and what the product provides.”
- Value-add: As in, “We have to evaluate the value-add of this activity before we spend more on it.”
- Circle back: As in, “I’m heading out of the office now, but I will circle back with you later.”
- Socialize: As in, “We need to socialize this concept with our key stakeholders.”
- Interface: As in, “My job requires me to interface with all levels of the organization.”
- Cutting edge: As in, “Our cutting-edge technology gives us a competitive advantage.”
- Results: As in, "Our product is top rated and provides you results that drive change."
- Innovative: As in, "Our innovative approach to solving problems leads to faster implementation."
Everyone is guilty of using buzzwords from time to time. The problem is that these generic terms force buyers to interpret what you mean when you say them. Choose your words carefully!
- To learn more about overused words with LinkedIn profiles, read an article on the FOX Business page.
- For Press Releases, read an article by Adam Sherk.
- For general office communication, read an article on CBS Money Watch.com.