Meaningless Business Jargon as Art

Rita J. King
September 14, 2016

Call out the buzzwords.

We've all been there, listening at a meeting listening to someone babbling in a stream of buzzwords. Instead of questioning what they are actually talking about, other people tend to smile and nod. Maybe they're bored. Maybe they aren't paying attention. Maybe they feel that having customers is a very complicated way to earn a paycheck and as long as everybody appears busy all the time, nobody will notice that they aren't adding much value.

Buzzwords help create busyness rather than business. This Isabel + Helen art exhibit, A Load of Jargon, explores the theme. A couple of lines in the Fast Company piece about the exhibit are worth contemplating:

  • When you use vague words and unclear sentence constructions, you don't have to think as clearly.
  • Giving your brain a shortcut by communicating with confusing language can infect the rest of your team, bogging everyone down with ineffective buzzwords.
  • Whenever you hear a buzzword, ask a question that forces clearer thinking.

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