Buzzword – a word or phrase, often an item of jargon, that is fashionable at a particular time or in a particular context.
For example – proactive, bottom line, exit strategy, etc…
The language of business is constantly changing; phrases such as face time, cloud computing, and exit strategy come and go. What are some of the current ‘buzzwords’ in your line of business?
Native speakers (particularly those with MBAs!) tend to use a lot of buzzwords in meetings. It’s not always helpful to use these yourself, but it can be useful to know the most common ones.
Complete the buzzword dictionary definitions below by writing in the missing vowels.
1) A CHANGE Of M_NDS_T means completely rethinking your attitude and approach to something.
2) A company's C_ R _ C_ MP_ T _NC _ S are its strengths, the things it does particularly well.
3) P _ R _ D _ GM SHIFT is a fundamental change in the way something is done.
4) To be PR __ CT_ V _ is to make things happen rather than waiting for them to
happen. Always have Plan A, B or even C, if necessary!
5) To SYN_ RG_ Z _ means to combine strengths and benefit from working together as a team.
6) To think __ TS_D_ THE B _ X is to think in totally new and creative ways.
7) To dr_ll d _ wn is to go into more detail.
8) Getting b _ y- _ n from people means getting their support for a proposal or project.
9) To TAKE a business TO THE N_XT L_ V _L means to expand it and make it more competitive.
10) You need to do a RE_L_TY-CH_CK when you've lost touch with the real world.
11) TH_ B_ TT_M LINE is the essential point in a discussion.
12) Looking at the B_ G P_CT_ R_ is looking at the situation as a whole.
13) To B_ NCHM_RK is to use a successful company's standards to measure and improve your own.
14) To R_MP _P production or sales is to increase them.
15) EMP_W_RM_NT gives employees the confidence and authority to take control of their jobs.
16) BL_M_ST_RM_NG is when a group meets to decide who's responsible for poor performance.
17) When you get P_SH-B_CK from someone it means they are resisting you or your ideas.
18) To SC_P O_T the competition means to check what they are doing
19) The L_NG G_M_ is your objectives for the long-term future
20) To _PSK_LL workers means to train them to do things they cannot do at present.
21) a C_ST_M_R-C_NTR_C company is one that bases its whole business on client needs.
22) The GR_SSR__TS of an organisation are its workers, rather than its leaders
- In what situations is using buzzwords justified?
- Would you use buzzwords to sound smart to your colleagues?
- What are the most popular buzzwords your management uses?
- How many buzzwords from the audio file do you remember?
OK, people Let's get the ball rolling. Well, we've all seen the latest figures and I don't need to tell you they're not good. Now, we're not here to run a blamestorming session But it's clearly, time for a reality check, ladies and gentlemen. This division is about to go under if we don't change our attitude and fast. What we need is a complete change of mindset. We need to synergize and take a much more proactive approach to product development. The same tired old ideas simply won't work anymore. If we always do what we've always done, then we'll always get what we've always got. And what got us where we are won't get us where we're going.
B I'm sorry?
A What I mean is we need to be thinking outside the box, maximising our creativity. Yes, that's right. I'm talking about nothing less than a complete paradigm shift in the management of this company.
B What's he talking about?
C I don't know
A OK, the bottom line is: if we don't figure out how to tum this operation around, we have no future in this business So, let's look at the big picture and then see if we can drill down to the details.
D Can I just something, Daryl?
A Fire away, Kelly.
D Erm, I don't think we're quite with you.
A Ah, right. "No, that's OK I was expecting a certain amount of push-back to begin with. But it's clearly important I get your buy-in on this. So let me put it simply. What we have to do is scope out the competition, establish what our core competencies are and then benchmark ourselves against the current market leader.
B But I thought we were trying to be different from the competition. Daryl?
A That's the long game, Tim.
B The long game?
A Yes. that's our long-term objective.
B Oh, I see.
A But right now we are struggling just to compete. If we can only learn from our competitors, then we'll be able to upskill our own people, ramp up product development, become more customer- centric and start to take this company to the next level.
C Erm, and you really want our input on this?
A Yes, Nigel. Change begins at the grassroots in an organisation. Empowerment - that's what this is all about.
A Yes, Kelly.
D Have you ever played buzzword bingo?