Top Ten List of My Most Hated Mgmt Terms

As 2011 is leaving us, it is time to have certain phrases or words that should leave as well. You know those management terms or sayings that stick with certain people. Think of a weekly meeting or maybe a project review and listen to the terms that you hear… I bet it will not take long for you to find some that just need to stop being used.

Here are those that want to leave 2011:

  1. Transparency… What is that really? If you were trying to figure it out, you would have to be like a spelling bee contestant. “Can I have that in a sentence please?”
  1. Thinking Outside the Box… I know this one has been around for quite sometime, it is definitely time to hang that one out to dry.
  1. Drill Down… This is for the folks that don’t understand the concept at a higher level. Hence you have to drill down for them to understand. Well, as the manager this truly makes you look pretty dumb (at least to your folks).
  1. Reaching Out… The only thing that should reach out is a baby asking to be picked up or hugged. Otherwise, just say, “Get in contact with xxxx.”
  1. Thought Leadership… Let’s not make up terms that just dummy down their overall intent. This one comes across as an oxymoron, just like military intelligence. Sorry – stop it!
  1. Boil the Ocean… Why would you think about boiling the ocean? I think we all understand that the task at hand is going to be difficult – or maybe not (just say – “this is going to be difficult.”)
  1. Going Green… This is one that is fashionable and we all want to seem hip and cool. After the first time, this gets very old.
  1. Internalize… Another one of those that I am sure have been around for a couple of years. Are you asking me to think about it some more? If so, then say that.
  1. Let’s ask out stakeholders community… Maybe it is me, but I have already discussed with those folks in the know and what I am saying is with their comments in mind. Should be part of all discussions that information is gathered before a recommendation is come up. Once a recommendation is ready, no need to ask the stakeholders again. Sorry, waste of time. Or maybe you really don’t trust your folks.. Whichever – stop!
  1. Drink the Kool-aid, Eat Our Own Dog Food… Or anything else that just means we have to try it before we ask others too. So sick of these…

Have any that drive you nuts?

  • Anonymous

    Cultural vocabulary is good for rapid communication.  When such words no longer directly connect to action, they become buzz-words of no meaning, zombies of their former goodness.

    Transparency “Can I have that in a sentence please?”: Anyone can easily see what is happening without special effort and without permission barriers.

    Transparency is one of the most valuable assest of a work culture and one of the hardest to establish when starting from a fear culture.

  • Alan – thanks for commenting. 

    I have imagines in my head when these are said (and I have used them) that make me laugh. Or better yet, I have imagines of what is literally being said. Not good!

    You are completely right on transparency. It should not have to be said. My memory of those that use transparency is.. I want “you” to be transparent, but I will try (and not very well, I may add).