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The Over-Hyped and Non-Over-Hyped Words
December 20, 2010 @ 10:26 AM | By Kate Nelson

If you sit in enough meetings, either around a conference room table or on an audio conference call or web conference, you start to pick up on a lot of buzzwords that quickly get very annoying. My ‘favorites’ lately have been absolutely, unequivocally, share of wallet, laser focus and reach out.

LinkedIn recently compiled a list of business buzzwords. The site sorted profiles for U.S. users to get this list of top 10 words:

  • Extensive experience
  • Innovative
  • Motivated
  • Results-oriented
  • Dynamic
  • Proven track record
  • Team player
  • Fast-paced
  • Problem solver
  • Entrepreneurial

Sound familiar? Are you nodding your head in agreement or thinking, “If I hear that word one more time, I’m gonna….”

On the flip side, there are words that are quickly going the way of 35mm cameras that use a roll of film. Just check out www.savethewords.org to see which ones will soon be extinct—kicked out of the dictionary.

Here are a few that you can adopt and impress your colleagues with something they’ve probably never heard:

Boreism: behavior of a boring person
Example: My cubemate is only capable of boreism so I always keep my headset on to make it look like I’m on the phone.

Retirant: retiree
Example: We’ve hired a retirant to come in and consult on that project since no one knows how to do it.”

Scaevity: unluckiness
Example: After spilling coffee on her keyboard, accidentally shredding her project list and forgetting to mute her phone line as she chomped her chips during the call, Suzy realized scaevity does come in threes.

You can prevent their extinction by adopting and using these words as often as possible. Even if you don’t want to use them, it’s still fun to pick a few random ones and study their meaning.

I hope your “lubency” to explore this site results in an increase in your vocabulary and interest in old/new words! Maybe next year we’ll see a list of 2011 buzzwords that includes gleimous, jobler and pamphagous.

What buzzwords are your favorites? Which should be added to the 2010 list?

Kate_nelsonKate Nelson is a speech analyst is a member of the training team. She works with the North American and Indian call centers and provides speech, voice and accent modification training for all employees. She is a graduate of Auburn University with a BS in speech pathology and audiology and is a certified Compton P-ESL (Pronouncing English as a Second Language) trainer. She is currently pursuing a Master’s degree in TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) at Auburn University. She is married and has a 5 ½ yr. old son. She is a self-described “word-nerd” and loves music, oenology, studying other languages and being with her family.

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Giana Forzareli

This was a very amusing, yet informative post. I hear these words used at least once a week. Have you ever heard these buzz words when you get a call from a call center services employee? I like to play a little game where I test there knowledge of the products that they're selling. I got the idea from the movie "Boiler Room." We have to update the buzz word lexicon so we don't all go insane from hearing them every week.

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