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Thread: Actioning a blue-skies approach outside the box

  1. #31
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    This all being said, the other half of the year I spend at university where there is no less a presence of this kind of language, just different words.

  2. #32
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    If Sick Boy were to go on a workplace/campus killing spree (and I'm not saying he should, mind, just if he were to) I think this thread is all the evidence that would be needed to fully exonerate him.
    Doin' the Lambeth Warp New: DISSENSUS - THE NOVEL - PM me your email address and I'll add you

  3. #33
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    Maybe this belongs on the "does my head in" thread, but these gripes are office related:

    1. Outlook read receipts. Go away.
    2. Sending every message with high importance: a former colleague of mine used to do this, which meant that when she had to announce the horrific events of 7/7, this dreaful terrorist attack was, according to her Outlook, on a par with the sandwich seller having come to the foyer that morning or someone not washing up their mug.

  4. #34
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    I had a client who would always do this. She'd send her mails at highest priority, Id set them to normal and reply, and she'd reset to highest and send them back.

    In the end I started setting my replies to lowest priority and taking an extra day to reply.

  5. #35
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    Mr Tea, that 'ideas train to target city' one was fantastic. I agree that you are too good at this. Have you considered taking Nomos's suggestion and attempt to make some money out of your ability? You could write books and conduct courses, all of which I'm sure would be highly lucrative.

  6. #36
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    I wouldn't even be a little bit surprised if Tea had actually heard someone he worked with use that phrase seriously. It gets that bad.

    My previously mentioned follicly-challenged manager also has a habit of insisting that you "flip" him rather than "send" him e-mails.

  7. #37
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    It's kind of a needless formalisation so that people are all commiting themselves to their daft pointless middle management roles through jargonised use of language. Makes people feel important. It's like a uniform made of words. If people said what they actually meant then there would be the air of an office being a normal place and not the mighty 'work'. Got to have people on their toes all the time, eh?

  8. #38

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    I have to put up with a lot of this nonsense, I have in the past sent spoof emails of utter biz-speak....not sure if people knew it was a joke or not.

    re the account ( pronounced wree not R.E. )

    ping me an email

    estate wide ( for a bloody website function????? )

    moving forwards ( a classic.......moving forwards, I like it because it's so so stupidly linear, there is only the target ahead. )

    functionality ( to describe absolutely anything )

    action ( a substitute for 'do' )

  9. #39
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    'Leveraging' is horrific. 'Stakeholders' can be disgustingly employed.

    What would happen if football cliches and business cliches ever met? Would Chelsea be harvesting West Brom's low hanging fruit early doors?
    Last edited by baboon2004; 01-09-2010 at 11:15 PM.

  10. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by nomos View Post
    "I'm going down the pub"
    Oh Christ.

    "I'm going toilet" makes me quiver with rage.

  11. #41
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    Mostly why this stuff grates so badly is because we're obscenely conservative about language change. Boring, but there you go. It's nothing innate in most of these words or their constructions that hurts, except that they're new.

    I'd hope that no one rails against evil backformations like "escalate" or "burgle" (Americans use the correct "burglarise", which sounds horrific to my ears). Not to mention dirty, redundant neologisms like "foreword" and "afterword".

    Having said that, associations with groups you don't respect much will certainly factor in as well. I feel as soiled when I hear schoolkids on the bus talking about how something "was pretty lol" (said like "loll") or prefacing opinions with "TBH" as I do around management speak.


    All that said, let's get back to hating on this shit, because it's more fun.

    John Ralston Saul has plenty of interesting stuff in Voltaire's Bastards on management speak, which expands on the guts of what's already been said about cliques / in crowds and out crowds. The thrust of his argument is that to get ahead as a technocrat you score points for how, not what you say. "How" will change in context - a la Sick Boy's mention of academia - but the general point is to demonstrate to those with power that you can communicate messages to them in the way they want to receive them. And that that is more important (in the sense of powerful) than the content. Have you got a presentation with charts and graphs? Can you talk about stats, regardless of how horseshit they are? Can you use the language those with more power than you want you to use? Then you're on your way.

    I think he's overly simplistic, but OTOH any of us with work experience in reasonably big organisations has probably come across a lower level manager who you know is never going to be a director or what have you because they can't do this kind of patter. They might be great at their job in many respects, but they can't "present" in the wider sense.

    One thing I find particularly sickening is slipping into using these terms myself. I do a lot of presentations and training sessions and I find it all too easy to fall into a certain mode. I trained 100s of staff on a new computer system and wanted to tell the trainees not to worry about work they'd already done - that the system was to be used "from now on". But the temptation to say "going forward" was weirdly strong! I had to work pro-actively to avoid slipping. I guess there was absolutely nothing disincentivising using business jargon. Luckily, my internal drivers won out every time and even when talking to some points offline with individual trainees I avoided saying anything so silly.



    Nah, but seriously, I do feel the gist of Saul's argument.
    Last edited by michael; 02-09-2010 at 11:06 PM.

  12. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amplesamples View Post
    Kind of on the same topic, but a little different is when customer services use the word "yourself" rather than you ie "we'll send that direct debit form to yourself to sign and send back". It's supposed to sound clever, but it sounds incredibly thick.
    Just to add to this one, inconsistent use of pronouns is really common where there's more than one party involved. I'd hesitate to even say "incorrect" it sounds so normal.

    You can talk to Paris or myself if you have any questions about this incident.

    Was anyone besides Paris and yourself present when the coke was being chopped?

    Do you want to do some lines with Paris and I?

    ... You might read those as being a bit weird, but I reckon they'd breeze by in speech without even being noticed.

  13. #43
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    The train company I travel with says:

    "The next station stop will be Reading/Wherever"

    I think they add the word "station" in there to cover themselves in the event of someone leaping out of the window at the signals just outside Reading, in the mistaken belief that they've properly arrived at Reading

  14. #44
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    "[X] is located in [Y]" where "[X] is in [Y]" would be perfectly adequate - yes, train anouncers, I'm looking at you.

    "Going forward" does my fucking nut in. Surely when you talk about stuff you're going to do it's implicit that you're going to do it in the future, given that it's quite hard to plan to do things in the past?

    Michael, I feel your pain about pronouns. I bitch about pronoun abuse so much I even bore myself, but it's just so hideous. I think people should be banned from using reflexive pronouns altogether until they've taken some sort of basic profficiency test.
    Last edited by Mr. Tea; 02-09-2010 at 09:25 AM.
    Doin' the Lambeth Warp New: DISSENSUS - THE NOVEL - PM me your email address and I'll add you

  15. #45
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    I'm well pleased that I genuinely find this sort of thing very funny, I think that helps a lot.

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