Business jargon and sounding like a moron!
Being at the UK CIPD Conference in Manchester last week has once again highlighted the extent to which we all conform through “professionalism” at work so that we are seen as credible.
Work is flooded with “management speak” that not only encourages conformity but also drives the feeling that we can’t be our real selves at work. We daren’t rock the boat…
Let’s take it off-line. Blue sky. Stakeholder management. Cohort. Run it up the flag pole. Singing from the same hymn sheet. Let’s do some 180. Road test it. Have you had dialogue? De-couple. Personal branding. Helicopter view. Not enough bandwidth. Square the circle. Leverage best practise. Get buy in. Burning platform. Think outside the box. It goes on and on…
Forbes has it right. In a recent article, it reported that we should all just talk normally…
” Because all that meaningless business jargon makes you sound like a complete moron!’’
Many people are challenged by the success of Donald Trump winning the US election – some of us may not agree with what comes out of his voice box – but did he win partly because he didn’t conform and just said it as it is? And in doing so potentially bought trust, despite some of his more dubious statements?
We can all unconsciously become conditioned to this way of talking and so not even notice that we are taking part. How much do you notice and evaluate your level of business bullshxt?
More worryingly, we conform and create business jargon as a way to sound more impressive.
A strategy to make others think that we know more than we potentially do. That we look confident, despite knowing that we are not.
We fake it.
When we researched confidence amongst leaders in our IGD International webinar in July, the favourite external confidence strategy was recognition, with 56% using it as a primary confidence builder, followed by control & planning (25%) and support from others (19%). But the one that none of us talk about is conformity.
The Guardian newspaper recently published data from The Institute of Leadership and Management reporting that 64% of offices use management speak with 23% considering it to be a pointless irritation. We hate it but we do it, removing part of our real selves from the work experience, and in doing so reducing opportunity at work – 80 % of people surveyed by The Harvard Business Review believe that authenticity improves the workplace. So, we need to stop it!
We all have the power to create change and humanise business. At Courageous Success, we know this because 81% of our clients say that as a result of working with us they now feel that they have the power to change their workplace. This power is within all of us.