Language – Business Babble

Jul 23 2015

Reflecting on the working month so far……… I have been amused by the amount of “business babble” that I have encountered. The aim of which I am assuming is to enhance the sound of the speakers’ intellect and supposed importance. However, it strikes me that they more often than not can’t further explain what they mean, because in truth, even I very often don’t have a clue what they’re on about.

This causes me to return to feedback I received early on in my career, my boss at the time stated that I needed to be more “strategic”. So I, an eager employee, ran off and implemented “strategy” – what I mean to say is I just thought about what that word meant, too embarrassed to ask anyone around me, I had carried on as normal. No one further explained how I was to apply this to my role, nothing about how I was to adapt “what I was saying, or what I was doing”. Because those are the two key things we should focus on – how do these changes affect what you say or what you do?

For example, one of my clients recently said that they needed to be more “customer aligned”. I questioned them, “what does that mean concerning your role, what does that mean you now need to do or say”, their answer: “I’m not actually too sure”. They of course hadn’t asked their boss or director, and this is usually the outcome – people are accepting jargon-based critique’s and feedback not knowing what half of it means.

The key is to be detailed, speak at the correct level, don’t litter your language only to make yourself feel more articulate. A good leader will connect with their colleagues at a level of behaviour addressing things they need to do and say. The challenge is that it’s hard, however that’s what developing leadership skills is all about.

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