Avoid Business Buzzwords: Say These Instead

Photo by Sean MacEntee (Flickr)


In the business world, it’s no secret that buzzwords have become part of our vocabulary. Personally, I’m not a huge fan of buzzwords, as more often than not, they’re just unnecessary jargon. The reasoning for this is that with so many buzzwords, some can have alternate meanings. Therefore, in the business world, they can often be misconstrued.

Also, there are some buzzwords in business that can make you sound out of touch. Here are some business buzzwords that you should just stop using altogether.

  1. Guru: People will often incorporate buzzwords like this into their job title to make themselves sound more credible in their field, but more often than not, it backfires and just makes them look very out of touch. Don’t call yourself a “sales guru,” for example. Don’t refer to yourself as a “sales wizard,” either. How about “sales professional?” It has a better ring to it, looks more in-touch, and appears more professional (no pun intended).
  2. Viral: When people use the buzzword “viral,” they’re typically referring to something that is shareable across the Internet. That’s fine, but the word isn’t a great one because it often puts unrealistic expectations at the forefront of the project in question. When something goes truly viral, it spreads to people all over the world, and you simply can’t plan that. You might think you have a fantastic idea that you’re confident will spread to hundreds of thousands of users, but you can’t predict it. Try using the word “shareable” instead. It keeps your expectations realistic and in check.
  3. Ping: In my personal opinion, this might be the most annoying buzzword out there today. Basically, it means that you will get back to someone. It’s high-tech lingo, but it’s out of touch, and you shouldn’t be using it. After collaborating with someone on a project, don’t tell them, “I’ll ping you.” Why not just say, “I’ll get back to you on this”?
  4. Impact: Another negative about buzzwords is that they can often be associated with negative scenarios. For example, buzzwords such as “impact” and “revamp” can often be associated with employees being laid off from the company. Another one that would be related to this would be “changes.” In a meeting, a person in a high position within a company would say that there are “changes” coming and that the company will be “revamping” their strategy. Certain buzzwords can be taken in the wrong context by employees, which will only create tension and bring down morale, so it’s important that if you’re going to use buzzwords, use them carefully. It’s important to keep your employees happy, so be cautious. Instead of using a word like “impact,” try using something more along the lines of “deliver” to get your statement across in a much better way.

Be a great leader and try to avoid cliché, awful buzzwords. What are some buzzwords that come to mind for you that simply drive you crazy?

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