The corporate language you should avoid at all costs!

The corporate language you should AVOID at all costs! Office workers reveal the professional jargon they find most ANNOYING – from ‘synergy’ to ‘circle back’

  • Virtual communication is at an all time high and with working in office in full swing, more and more employees are facing the dreaded corporate language
  • According to data from CV Maker, business babble has become so cliché that it’s beginning to get underneath the skin of every corporate worker
  • CV Maker conducted a poll of over 4,500 people, asking them, ‘What is the most annoying corporate buzzword or phrase?’
  • With a whopping 538 votes, the word synergy – which means ‘increased effectiveness through collaboration’- ranked number one
  • Other hated corporate language that made the list were also ‘transparency’, ‘make it happen’, ‘onboarding’ and ‘takeaway’

Virtual communication is at an all time high and with working in office in full swing, more and more employees are facing the dreaded corporate language that raises your blood pressure even more than a looming deadline and sees you ‘circling back’ to longing for the days before office jargon became cliché. 

Business jargon has become a staple of office discourse and while it’s common, it’s also ‘annoying’ and sees everyone chatting in overused corporate phrases.

According to data from CV Maker, business babble has become so cliché that it’s beginning to get underneath the skin of every corporate worker, no matter if it’s through an email, call or while sitting through a meeting, these words are sure to make you dread chatting with your coworker. 

Virtual communication is at an all time high and with working in office in full swing, more and more employees are facing the dreaded corporate language (stock image)

CV Maker conducted a poll of over 4,500 people, asking them, ‘What is the most annoying corporate buzzword or phrase?’ 

With a whopping 538 votes, the word synergy – which means ‘increased effectiveness through collaboration’- ranked number one. 

Coming in at number two and three, the phrases ‘outside the box’ – which pushes employees to ‘think creatively’ – and ‘take ownership’ – which encourages workers to take initiative – send workers into a frenzy irritation. 

With 361 votes, ‘circle back’, meaning to discuss later, took fifth place and ‘reach out’ came in at sixth with 288 votes. 

Other hated corporate jargon that made the list were also ‘transparency’, ‘make it happen’, ‘onboarding’ and ‘takeaway’. 

No matter how annoying you may find the corporate jargon to be, as hard as you try, there’s no escaping it. 

Word 

Meaning 

Synergy

More efficiency via collaboration

Outside the box

Think creatively

Take ownership

Take initiative

Value-added

Increase in value

Circle back

Discuss later

Reach out

Contact

Going forward 

In the future 

Proactive

Fixing problems 

Takeaway

Lesson learned

Make it happen 

Complete something

Thought leadership

Authoritative leader

Onboarding

Introduce new ideas

Transparency

Being clear about something

Mission critical

Getting something done

Scalable

Increase demand

 

A spokesperson for CV maker said: ‘Corporate jargon is a type of language used by business professionals. 

‘Often, it includes euphemisms, buzzwords, or ambiguous phrases. Every industry seems to have its version of jargon, as vocabulary filters through the workplace and eventually becomes day-to-day language.

‘These corporate terms are often used as extra fluff to help individuals sound professional in a work environment.’ 

The spokesperson added that when corporate language is so used too frequently it becomes ‘irritating’ and can ‘negatively’ impact the workplace. 

‘Office jargon can also impact people negatively in the workplace. If an individual doesn’t understand a word or phrase, it can leave them feeling confused and isolated.

Watch what you emoji! Avoid these emojis when sending over that work email!  

  • Slightly smiling face
  • Tongue out face
  • Fire 
  • Eggplant
  • Poop
  • Peach 
  • Laughing crying face
  • Single tear face 

‘If you’re setting goals or targets for your employees, try using clear and concise language. This way, communication can be effective,’ the spokesperson for CV Maker noted.

Online learning platform, Preply’s survey echoed CV Maker’s findings and even found that many candidates found frequent office jargon to be a red flag. 

The buzzwords became deterrents for employees and candidates as one in five respondents considered using corporate language in a job description a red flag and even noted it played a factor in their decision to apply or not. 

In a recent study done by corporate communication giant Slack and language-learning program Duolingo, the companies showed what over 9,400 workers thought of emojis in the office.

The study noted that 69 per cent of operation managers and HR leads admitted that emoji usage in the workplace allows them to communicate effectively with fewer words, and 67 per cent said emojis speed up communications.

Furthermore, more than half of participants revealed they use emoji’s in work-related exchanges, while 30 per cent said they never use them. 

The study noted there are many universally forbidden emojis in the workplace. 

The study showed that you should avoid using the slightly smiling, laughing crying, tongue out, single tear, fire, peach, poop and eggplant emoji in the workplace as they can have double meanings and come across as inappropriate. 

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