I once had a coworker who sent “Friday Humor” e-mails each week. This is back in the early days of the Internet when those jokes were still fresh. Once before a company-wide meeting he created a “Buzzword Bingo” page and passed it around to a few of us quietly. I played a little game of buzzword bingo in a meeting today, and if “differentiator” was in every cell, I definitely won. It was said (not by me) no less than 10 times. I also got a head start during an interview yesterday. “Differentiator” may be the word of the week, but there’s others. Do I need to mention a few? Paradigm, Web 2.0, buzz, relevancy, effectiveness, impactful, and one personal favorite phrase overused by boss at a previous job: “low hanging fruit.”
Warning: Whether in a briefing, internal meeting, or sitting around the dinner table, overuse of these words causes them to lose their “effectiveness.” Yes, I used a buzzword, it’s OK, sparingly. When we talk to companies, it’s our job to hear about a product, service, or event and cut out all the jargon. Very often these words don’t make it into our articles, and sometimes at the expense of an otherwise insightful quote.
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