February 24, 2013 at 5:01 pm #176692
“C.R.A.P. stands for Corporate Rhetoric Awards Program, and the idea was to find one really bad piece of communication—a CEO column, an intranet story, a press release, an article in the employee publication—and poke gentle fun at it. ” – Steve Crescenzo
The other day I picked up a piece of corporate communication from (whatever place) in the mail and out of the blue started laughing. The headlines on this thing were just so funny. It was like no human being could write this meaninglessly…and yet somehow they managed to:
- Quotes – “These initiatives will affect every one of us, and each of us plays a role in our success.”
- Sentences – “I want to share my thoughts on a very important part of our mission.”
- Words – “Alignment,” “Optimize,” “Continuity,” “Holistic,” “Strategic,” “Enhance”,” “Clearly and Effectively”
One communication expert who’s made a living out of lampooning bad corporate communication is Steve Crescenzo. Most of his articles are inaccessible unless you’re a member of Ragan Select. I was able to get one of them out however and it’s just perfect.
Here are two standouts mentioned in the piece. We must have mentioned these somewhere in a GovLoop discussion before….right? And yet they haven’t gone away!
- “Challenges and opportunities”
My personal favorites:
- “Force multiplier” or “Leverage”
- “Looking ahead” or “And yet we mustn’t lose sight of…”
- “Critical initiative”
What are your favorite corporate cliches?
February 24, 2013 at 8:38 pm #176698
Speaking for myself, I find the words “renewal” and “modernization” have lost much, if not all, of their intended meaning. At a certain point, when such terms get used with so much regularity, they start to become like those “Everything must go!” signs you’ll see in windows of businesses that have apparently been either moving, going out of business, or cleaning up after a fire, every day for the last 10 years.
February 25, 2013 at 2:32 pm #176696
* Anything 2.0 or for that matter 3.0
* “e” this and “e” that
* “From East to West…” (insert any two geographical locations to indicate progress)
* “On the move”
* “Maximize (like a Super Value meal, we will maximize our opportunities, our resources…)”
* “I hope you will (join with me, agree with me…)”
* “Together we can… (do what I say)”
* “The future is bright, but (insert unpleasant thing we have to do)”
February 28, 2013 at 3:22 pm #176694
This was a light and enjoyable read. Thanks so much for sharing!
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