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5/19/06

I came across this funny article in the Boston Globe a while back about all the annoying buzzwords people throw around the office.

If terms like "value-add" and "thinking outside the box" make you want to jam a laser pointer into your eye, you are not alone in your suffering. Having been asked to "leverage their core competencies" one too many times, workers all across the country are offering up a collective response: Stop the insanity.

What's the worst business jargon you hear around your office?

Comments (236)

In reply to wbanker
Best Response
  •  6/30/06

let's not hammer a dead horse
let's not reinvent the wheel

ahhhhh, how bout let's not throw a haymaker at your eye when you're not looking

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5/20/06

worst ive heard is "on a go-forward basis"

In reply to am898
5/20/06

can someone give me some "color" on this post?

shoot me.

  •  5/21/06

If I could just "piggy back" on what he was saying... or maybe someone else could kind of "unpack that" a little more.

  •  5/22/06

Do we really always need to "crank" or "jam"? There are some additional annoying modeling words, but these are the worst; constantly overused. I can't stand to hear either around the office anymore.

5/22/06

The worst business jargon I hear on a daily basis is.. caveat.. the only caveat is.. i swear if I hear that one more time, I might have to use that laser pointer.

In reply to Wall Street Addict
5/22/06

My worst is "at the end of the day"

In reply to
5/23/06

I would have to agree that "jamming" is the most irritating modeling phrase ever.

In reply to groan
  •  5/23/06

"At the end of the day..."

"It is what it is"....

In reply to
5/23/06

"talk to that point", "get our arms around that"

5/24/06

"we are in the business of creating synergies mate" "Shift those graphs" "Massage the red dots"

5/24/06

"why don't you go ahead and take a stab at that and get back to me" (usually from some lazy-ass associate pawning off his work)

In reply to am898
5/25/06

everyday is another attempt at "going forward"

5/25/06

What we need to do is ... Why don't we ... And of course Mr. Client, we will work through the night to get this to you first thing in the morning.

5/25/06
5/26/06

"Get a download"

"He has some extra bandwidth"

In reply to sasm9
5/26/06

"whats the time line" annoys the hell out of me

6/10/06

-apples to apples
-apples to oranges

6/16/06

Vanilla.

(Vanilla strategy, Vanilla buying, etc.)

In reply to zhang18
  •  6/16/06
In reply to am898
  •  6/29/06

touch base, circle up,

In reply to am898
6/29/06

can you "roll these changes" through the model

In reply to
6/29/06

"drill down" ... used by a VP to say that you need to "drill down" on a certain topic - i.e. go away and do hours of pointless research for few tangible results

  •  6/29/06

"at the end of the day"
"let's take a stab at it"
"can we circle up"
"deep dive"
"net-net"

And my favorite, "capacity". John, do you have capacity to model this out to year 2329??

In reply to
6/30/06

who's your daddy?

In reply to
6/30/06

Ha, I have to agree that "capacity" is a pretty bad one.

In reply to Bank_Bang
6/30/06

i agree possibly the most annoying office jargon word

In reply to
7/5/06

hate the term ...bandwidth...

7/20/06
In reply to dankobe
7/20/06
In reply to Youngone13
7/20/06

How about so and so 'pinged me' last night...as in sent an email via blackberry....ughhhhh....'pinged me'....shudder

In reply to eawolff99
7/20/06
7/20/06

"On a go-forward basis" makes me cringe, too. Is the future tense not sufficient? Also dislike "offsite" used as a noun.

7/20/06

Roadmap is another one I can't stand. Just tell me the plan.

In reply to dhlwww
7/20/06

"low hanging fruit"
"pari passu"
"ready, fire, aim"
"out of pocket"
"sh*t flows downhill".....

In reply to dhlwww
7/20/06

"let's huddle on this one"

In reply to lc
7/20/06

ramp up must be my least favorite of them all!

In reply to bankit400
7/20/06

Do you have the "Capacity" to take on another project.

of course they already know what your answer should and will be...

In reply to kwebb
7/20/06

Bankers love to "opine" on the situation. Loosely translated-here is our thoughts but if we are wrong, it was just an opinion, certainly not to be taken as an absolute...

7/24/06

Anything Latin. Para pisu comes to mind.

7/25/06

Isn't everyone pro-active? are there people that are anti-activity?

7/25/06

It's not so much the buzzwords that I hate, but rather the people that drop them without end.

In reply to ccc95
7/25/06

generally bad news when someone mentions DD

In reply to ccc95
7/25/06

if i hear my staffer say it one more time...

In reply to indojin
7/25/06
In reply to opticalcharge
7/25/06

I can't stand the word "analyst". Just call me what I am, your bitch.

In reply to mkgref
7/26/06

Yes, they shouldn't be afraid to call a spade a spade. Perhaps more in the UK than US.

In reply to market man
7/26/06

the us is too politically correct for the spade spade comment

8/9/06
8/9/06

one of my VPs favourite expressions is "we need to get this done PDQ"

In reply to livingthedream
  •  8/11/06

frequently used by senior bankers to mean "I have no fucking idea and I am an idiot but here is some bs on the subject anyways just don't ask any relevant questions"

8/12/06

Pencil fucking... oh wait that is my favorite

In reply to am898
8/22/06

any consulting-ese "frameworks", "drivers", etc..

  •  8/31/06

Earlier I heard' ablolutely, we will touch base next week and have a ball park figure for you'
Also 'Lets take this offline'
I am going to put a spade through his head soon

8/31/06

get the ducks in a line
the stars and moon align
the fact of the matter is...

8/31/06

keep your oar in the water (marketing term)

8/31/06

"i think this would be a good exercise for you" - associate

In reply to somegirlfromcali
9/4/06

somegirlfromcali, then of course proper spelling would be colour :)

9/4/06

I've got to admit,

    "ready, fire, aim"

has got to be the most hilarious!

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9/4/06
9/4/06
9/13/06
10/16/06

"just touching base..."
"raincheck..."
"game plan..."

Arghh....!!!

10/27/06

"let's take a 25,000 foot view"

In reply to somegirlfromcali
10/27/06

I concur, how many times do I have to hear that word!

11/15/06

I am fed up with "ETA"s

12/5/06
12/5/06

Ooops wrong thread!

12/13/06

let's not reinvent the wheel - that one is horrible!
Bandwidth, intellectual capital, and ego wall are all equally bad as well

I found this game that Babson made making fun of buzzwords. They call it Buzzword Blending Syndrome (BBS)lol - pretty funny and kills some time:
Buzzword Blends

12/16/06
1/9/07
1/18/07
1/18/07
1/19/07
1/19/07
1/19/07
1/20/07
1/23/07

way overused everywhere (really bad in the UK though).

and it adds absolutely nothing to the meaning of the sentence.

2/4/07

We had a sales call from a Canadian HF (who we can't do business with) called Giraffe Capital. My VP gets on the call with me and takes over, before first telling me (on mute) that he will throw in giraffe jokes.

He used:
Let me stretch my neck out on this one and guess..
So we can grab that low-hanging fruit
Let's paint the spots on the animal

He kept a totally strait face and I was DYING!!!

2/10/07
2/16/07

"I need this done by tonight"...

In reply to grind
2/27/07
grind:

any consulting-ese "frameworks", "drivers", etc..

same here.

In reply to NSX
2/27/07
In reply to gradhopes
3/1/07
gradhopes:

"I need this done by tonight"...

fuck i hate this one. and also "we have new projects coming up..."

3/6/07

I hate the word situation. Everything's a "situation". I'd just prefer if somebody could use the word "issue" of "problem" for a change...

3/14/07

This drives me nuts:
in French: deja vu = Already seen...
How can this dummy says " Already seen already seen all over again" what the Fu$%#$#

MC2

6/15/07
In reply to AlphaGirl
6/17/07

The best post on this thread lol.

amb05:

We had a sales call from a Canadian HF (who we can't do business with) called Giraffe Capital. My VP gets on the call with me and takes over, before first telling me (on mute) that he will throw in giraffe jokes.

He used:
Let me stretch my neck out on this one and guess..
So we can grab that low-hanging fruit
Let's paint the spots on the animal

He kept a totally strait face and I was DYING!!!

6/18/07

something we can all aspire to...

6/19/07

"take ownership"

"this is what you signed up for"

"be the bulldog"

etc...

The "ownership" one is my least favorite. I'm not going to display an "ownership" level of interest in anything that I don't actually own.

6/19/07

"Circling the wagons"

...this isn't the fucking oregon trail

6/19/07

In my office they keep using words like "revenue" and "EBITDA" and "basis points"- I mean, WTF?

6/19/07

No need to reinvent the wheel...

6/20/07
6/20/07

"We don't want to open up the kimono"
- It puts a good two seconds up images, and then I wake up to realize I'm in a fing sauage-fest

"There's more grease left in this pig"
- Reminds me how much I hate middle market deals

In reply to UserAccountDeleted
6/27/07
TooLeveraged:

#REF!

By far and away the worst.

6/28/07
6/28/07
6/29/07
6/29/07
7/2/07

the INTERNS are taking over!

7/5/07

PIK Toggle
Tranches
"Let's get some seemless"

7/8/07

jfdi as in just fucking do it

7/8/07

guestitmate, gustimate

7/11/07

bl**dy annoying:
"touch base with.."
"organize deliverables.."
"on that front"
"knowledge transfer"
"identifying core competencies for holistic improvement.." (this one begs the words "Fk you")

n the way its said..sort of like their swallowing their saliva only to regurgitate it just so that they could play with it...wtf is the exit exit exit???

7/16/07
7/17/07

"transition phase"
"restructuring initiative"

One time, a head of a team singled out one of the team members after something had gone wrong. "You are so pussy that I should go to your home and fuck you". Needless to say, I caught a "rofl" fit.

7/26/07

Most of the above mentioned terms can bring me to the edge. My lease favorite behavior is when some jack**s cannot at least use them in the correct context.

7/26/07

Peter, whats happening? Um, yeaaaaaaaah, im gonna have to go ahead and ask you to come in on (stretches) Saturday.

8/1/07
8/1/07

I hear the term "bitchface" directed at everyone pretty frequently.

8/1/07

Anything with the word "Forward" in it

For example, we're moving forward until 11 pm again.

8/3/07

another one in my office:

War room. This is not N. Korea. Nor is it the NFL draft. Lets please refer to it as the conference room that it is.

8/15/07
8/15/07
8/20/07

Do you have time to work on this?
#REF!
one off events

8/20/07

Do you have time to work on this? wouldn't be so bad...I hate the alternative that all my higher-ups use: Do you have capacity? or at times when doing nothing but pretending to manage has really gotten them in a hurry, just a blank email with subject "Capacity?"

8/20/07

"Wow" or "Just, wow"

It's subtle... but slowly this expression seems to have prevailed this year. It is said almost anytime, anywhere, for anything. I always thought it was a generational thing, 18-22 year olds saying it all the time. Now when older folks say this, it makes me cringe.

In reply to bill86
8/20/07
johnp686:

another one in my office:

War room. This is not N. Korea. Nor is it the NFL draft. Lets please refer to it as the conference room that it is.

This one made me lol.

In reply to Seanc
8/22/07
Seanc:
johnp686:

another one in my office:

War room. This is not N. Korea. Nor is it the NFL draft. Lets please refer to it as the conference room that it is.

This one made me lol.

Your was funny.. One going around mine is

"Net Worth or Nothing"

I think its catchy? Use it every chance I get..

"Cack me nimble"

9/16/08

i still think "what's your bandwdith?" is the worst of them all.

9/16/08

This tread is hilarious.

"Don't spin your wheels" is over-used.

9/18/08

Starting a sentence with "To the extent that..."

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9/18/08

ALSO: when bankers don't take the time to spell out the word "Thanks" or a simple "Thank you"

Instead it's like, "thnx" or even just "thx"

Come on, I just worked on this until 2am; please take the time to spell the word out completely

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9/18/08

come to think of it, even though it's not a "buzzword," I'm growing tired of the meaningless "how are ya'" as a greeting. What the banker is really saying is that "i don't really care how you're doing, but i'm going to give you a crap load of work and i just needed a way to begin the conversation..."

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9/18/08

"the meat and potatoes of the matter"
"senior exposure"
"gin up the model"
"what's the ETA?"

I also agree on the "bandwith" / "capacity" comments. Used way too much!

9/18/08

to hate...

lets "go ahead" and put together some "talking points"
were all going to have to "step it up" now "boys and girls"
yeah, "lets talk about that offline"
where going to have to find ways to "create value" around here
lets "huddle up" later and talk about this

then theres the most abused - i mean, "it is what it is"

at least there was actually one that made me chuckle....

(in your best country accent) "let's get 'er done"!

12/12/08
12/12/08

To go along with the current working environment:
"redundancy"
"down-sizing"
"synergies"
"cost saving"
"no bonus"

12/12/08

Ha, this is great. I think half of you work in my office.

I can't stand:

opine
from 30,000 feet
get our arms around

This isn't a buzzword, but def one of my least favorite... "what are you doing this weekend?" or variations such as "hope you don't have any plans for this weekend", or "are you going home tonight?" (usually less of a question and more of a statement that its expected I will absolutely, under no circumstance leave the office before sunrise.

12/12/08

Unless you want to sound like the Knights Who Say NEE from Monty Python and the Holy Grail, "niche" should be pronounced more like "nitch" than "neesh"

12/13/08

"don't be afraid to 'push back' if you're feeling over-loaded"

I hated that one from my SA program!

12/13/08

I pretty much hate them all

12/13/08

"yeah but I have this other thing I have to get done first"

usually from some D-bag analyst who isn't getting a bonus this year

also... "lets circle up" .... i hate that

12/13/08

When your associate comes to your desk and says "we need to get this done" and just looks at you; he doesn't mean "we" he means you, so why doesn't he just say what he means and say "This task is below me and the skills I acquired while I did my MBA at Harvard (I did mention I went to Harvard, you knew I went to Harvard right?) so you need to get on this so I can pretend to look it over and then hand it to our MD

12/15/08

We've all heard these phrases a million times. It's interesting that bankers all have the same cliche vocab. It really sucks when you start using them with friends or at informal settings.

Banking > VC > Tech PE; PM me if you would like any advice I'm happy to help

12/15/08

i really cant stand circle up either. I think that "differentiating ourselves" is probably used 100+ times a day...excelster, i agree with you. I can not stand when people say neech. i laughed when i read that because i actually thought of MP too.

12/15/08
12/15/08
12/15/08
12/16/08
9/1/09

here's a good one rather than an annoying one: "Stupidvisor" - so appropriate for our supervisor!

9/2/09

I actually counted today and in one conference call I heard "one-off" 7 times. It had to do with the situation, but seriously that got old quick.

9/2/09

"Does that make sense?"
I fucking hate that.

9/2/09

I hate the fuckers who try using colloquial British phrases...

"Yeah, I must have missed that"
"no worries, lets update and get it out to the group"

"see you later"
"cheers"

Or here's the scarlet letter of douchbaggery:

"Query: do we include that segment as a going concern?"

For fucks sake, when did Madonna start working here.

In reply to
9/2/09
Anonymous Monkey:

frequently used by senior bankers to mean "I have no fucking idea and I am an idiot but here is some bs on the subject anyways just don't ask any relevant questions"

Couldn't be more true haha

9/3/09

"Its pretty straight-forward"

-The phrase has two meanings:
1-"this is easy so hurry the fuck up." or
2-"I don't know what the fuck this is so do something with it and don't ask questions."

9/11/09

"out of pocket" has been getting a big following around here as of late... and I'm ready to shove bamboo shoots between my fingernails.

"I'm going to be out of pocket for most of next week, so lets try to get this taken care of before then"

Out of pocket? You're not a fucking quarterback, you're a fat, divorced middle-aged managing director. You're a poster child for judging a book by its cover, and fucking hating it... fat, rich and obnoxious. The only pocket you need to be worrying about is a lean pocket, ever heard of one of those?

9/11/09

^ that made me lol

---------------------------
BossMode

9/11/09

Noone uses "Circle Back" except for the most toolish of corporate tools.

9/11/09

from a suchandsuch perspective...

makes me want to throw a baby out a window.

9/12/09

Getting "crushed" with work. Simply "crushed."

9/12/09

What about "slammed" with work.

9/16/09

Apparently this post is getting so much attention Yahoo decided to put together their own top 10...
http://hotjobs.yahoo.com/career-articles-the_most_...

9/16/09

If you hate these buzzwords so much, why did you make a thread to list all of them? I'll circle back and touch base with this thread later.

9/28/09

"The short answer is..." (long answer is you're f*cked)

"Shoot you an email"

"Pls, asap, thx!"

10/4/09

Anything with "Reach out": "Feel free to reach out to me," "HR will be reaching out to other depts," etc.

10/4/09

We have waves of the most insufferable buzz words being used until you feel like inhaling your own vomit just to kill yourself.

Lately these have been quite popular:

- we need to get smart on...
- we need to think smartly about...
- lets scratch our on heads on this and discuss later...

We have 2 people who have somehow/somewhere heard someone say vis a vis and have become so impressed by it that they feel the need to inject it into just about every fucking sentence they say.

10/19/09

Not sure how no one has mentioned "Please advise"

Also:

What are the "takeaways?"
"Kindly" (a.k.a. "right the fuck now")
We don't want to "double-touch" anything
"Action" used as a verb
I've got a lot "on my plate" right now (mostly McDonald's)

10/20/09

holistic approach
strategic management
teamwork

10/24/09

"Can we get some color on this" or "Can you give me some color on this"

10/25/09

Up and coming overused words by the newest class of analysts:

epic fail
epic win
FTW (for the win)

In reply to supib
10/26/09
supib:

Up and coming overused words by the newest class of analysts:

epic fail
epic win
FTW (for the win)

/b/tards in banking?

11/15/09

One phrase I don't think I saw: "Ping me"

11/17/09

"massage the numbahz"
"zomg that discount rate, it's too hai"
"i ll call you back" (No, you're not)

11/17/09

"let us noodle on that a bit."

Grown men and women say that. You've got to be kidding me. Noodle!

1/1/10

all my meetings end with "let's make some deals!"

ugh.

1/1/10
2/10/10

"piker"

"business owner" i.e. "being a financial advisor is being a business owner"

"smilin' n' dialin'"

"keep it simple stupid"

6/29/10

Great thread! I HATE Jargon. While people have captured almost every annoying phrase out there; I have a particularly annoying one to share.

"Open the kimono"

Sentence example: "We need to find out what he wants so we can get him to open the kimono a bit"

Drives me insane whilst giving me a rather terrible mental image!

6/29/10

Someone mentioned it above, but "Please advise" sucks. Even worse, all of the people I work with love to write "Please advice". Every time I see it I want to circle up with the person later to beat the shit out of them.

Also, this is at least the second thread I've seen resurrected from 2006 in the past two days. Someone must be bored...

7/8/10

let's grab the bull by the horns

7/8/10

Latest annoying jargon/ buzzwords:

"it's not brain surgery"

"and don't kill yourself" aka "your Weekend/ night is fucked"

"Ass raped" (self explinatory)

7/9/10
9/17/10

i want to "reach out" to you as a "follow-up" to our meeting on how to approach this deal "holistically."

"The details of your incompetency don't interest me."
- Miranda Priestly

9/18/10

Can someone give me some color on all of these posts? I will be out of pocket for a bit. You don't need to spin your wheels on it, just get it done ASAP.

thx.

---------------------
"Well, you can do whatever you want to us, but we're not going to sit here and listen to you badmouth the United States of America."

In reply to Ovechkin
9/19/10
Ovechkin:

Not sure how no one has mentioned "Please advise"

Also:

What are the "takeaways?"
"Kindly" (a.k.a. "right the fuck now")
We don't want to "double-touch" anything
"Action" used as a verb
I've got a lot "on my plate" right now (mostly McDonald's)

Only Ops uses that phrase at my firm. I just started there but I know if I read "please advise" in an e-mail I can look next to their name and see OPS in the department tag.

I think a lot of these are essentially ways to hide idiocy behind toolishness.

9/19/10

"Talk the talk"

THE most awkward sounding buzz-word/phrase ever!

Honorable mentions:

"Body language"
"Scratch my back" (not literally)
"Brownie points"
"Live to work" / "Work to live"
"You're smart" (it seems everyone who 'complimented' me directly in that way hated me inside, lol)

9/21/10

I don't want to get egg on my face
Does this thing have legs

fdba Emory Blaine and BBA or otherwise trying to find the perfect pseudonym.

10/14/10

"...I mean if you're a hammer, everything else is nail..."

Additionally these are ones I absolutely despise:

--belt and suspenders-- as in "Ok, well lets do it both ways and in the end we can say: look, we took a belt and suspenders approach and we ended up in the same place"

--holistically-- need I say more?

10/19/10

capacity, bandwith, dont spin your wheels.

10/20/10

"You didn't get the job".

1/4/11

"Please find [attachment]", as if I don't know there are attachments in the email and I need to search for them in the body of the text.

instead it should say "I've attached..." or "Attached is ...".

1/4/11

"turn into a pumpkin" when someone becomes unavailable/unreachable (as in: guys, can you get me a draft by 4? i turn into a pumpkin at 5.)

my favorite buzzwords are "pencils down." always music to my ears when I hear that at work.

In reply to bankbank
1/5/11
bankbank:

"turn into a pumpkin" when someone becomes unavailable/unreachable (as in: guys, can you get me a draft by 4? i turn into a pumpkin at 5.)

my favorite buzzwords are "pencils down." always music to my ears when I hear that at work.

haha just heard 'turn into a pumpkin' the other day for the first time. i didn't realize it was a thing.

1/13/11

One of the worst currently... "pushback".

Pushback is something you do when getting butt fucked. So while I'm sure plenty of bankers use that word at home, lets keep it out of the office.

1/13/11