Sure, there are some that I've loved that have been pulled off the air faster than you can say RANCH TOOTH, but for the most part my favorites have been a roaring success both within the trade community and with consumers.
One that I've been thinking about a lot lately is the IBM classic, Buzzword Bingo. "These innovation meetings are killing us," they say. "The hype, the jargon. These buzzwords are killing us. Every time you hear a word, you mark your card."
If I had the energy to actually put a card together, I'd be killing it at work. The latest offenders include INFO GRAPHIC, TRANSPARENT, PLUS-DELTA, THOUGHT LEADERS... They join the age-old classics like SYNERGY, STRATEGIC, and DEEP DIVE.
Really though, it's collections of words more than the singletons that truly get under my skin.
I first noticed my aversion to certain phrases when I was home on maternity leave two years ago. It was an overwhelming time to say the least—in both good ways and bad. And after weeks of sitting in the same spot on the couch with a small man constantly latched onto my chest, the very last thing I wanted to hear in between suck sessions was, "Um, I think he's hungry." WHAT??? NO. NOT. POSSIBLE. He JUST ate. Even if it was true (goodness gracious, how could it be?) did I really need to hear it every minute of every day?!*
Sure, there have been other offending phrases spoken—and incessantly repeated—since then, but none have risen to I-think-he's-hungry status. until now.
"You're doing a great job!"
Over the last several weeks, I've had countless conversations at the office about transition, personalities, performance, and potential. It's not my best quality, but I'm not really comfortable talking about myself and I'm the opposite of gracious when I'm complimented. It's not that I don't appreciate the sentiment, I do. Particularly because when the words are uttered, they come with a supportive smile and complete sincerity. The thing is, I am not motivated by accolades. In fact, they make me uncomfortable. When it comes to my work, or how I approach anything in life, the opinion I value most is my own. I've been told I'm my own worst critic (more times than I can count... maybe it should be on my list of banned phrases?), but that really is OK with me. It's who I am, and it's what drives me to do what I do and to try my best.
So when I'm asked, "Would it be helpful for me to tell you more often how well you're doing?" Can you guess what my answer has been every single time?* Aside from loving magazines and really good commercials, there's one other thing about me everyone should to know: I mean what I say, and I say what I mean.
|Hudson at 4 months.
This guy, hungry? SERIOUSLY??
*Did you guess "no"? BINGO!