Wednesday, June 25, 2008

The Nightmare of "Office-Speak"

"Going forward, we will pre-prepare and assess any challenges with intense granularity so as to leverage all of our resources and present you with the best scenario."

That line of mumbo jumbo was inspired by a BBC article in which readers submitted examples of office-speak "you love to hate." These mind-numbing examples have become so commonplace, they've even got Bingo playing cards you can use at your next meeting.

Here are a couple of our favorites:

"The business speak that I abhor is pre-prepare and forward planning. Is there any other kind of preparedness or planning?"

"The latest that's stuck in my head is we are still optimistic things will feed through the sales and delivery pipeline (ie: we actually haven't sold anything to anyone yet but maybe we will one day)."

It's not just the most self-important among us who suffer from this linguistic disease - it seems to have broken out in the sales force at large. If you don't believe me, take a meeting with yourself - tape record your side of your next phone call with a prospect. I suspect you'll find some "office speak" lurking. Or, try this: practice your next sales presentation with a friend or colleague and ask them to write down each offensive phrase. I think you'll be surprised by their tally.

Going forward we hope that you'll be able to pre-plan your sales conversations so as to consolidate your gains in this space and realize 110% of your goals. Just kidding!
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