The company eFinancialCareers got in touch with a host of bankers, consultants, institutional salespeople and accountants in their 30s to develop a collection of their least favorite office clichés – usually ones voiced by their bosses on a near daily basis.
Some you may have heard of, others you probably haven’t:
Action items: Essentially just a list of things that need to get done.
Hard stop: One that’s oft-used in journalism as well. It means you have to stop a meeting at a specific time as you have another appointment that you can’t move or be late to. “I have a hard stop at 11 a.m.”
Over the wall: You are in the know. You have information that others don’t.
Parking lot: To put an end to a conversation with the idea of coming back to it later. “Let’s put that in a parking lot and move on.” Giving an idea “some air,” or time to resonate, is similar.
Dig out: To get through all your backlog of work. “Let me dig out and I’ll come see you in an hour.”
Circle back: To re-evaluate something or give it a second look. You can also circle back – or re-connect – with a person to solve an issue. “Let me circle back with Bob and I’ll let you know.”
Deep dive: Giving a thorough analysis.
Horses for courses: Acknowledging that there may be more than one strategy or approach that will work. “There is more than one way to skin a cat,” would be the closest idiom.
Pigs get fat, hogs get slaughtered: Don’t be overly greedy, lest you get the chop. Sort of an anti-Gordon Gekko.
Touch base: To make contact or catch up. “Let’s touch base later today.”
Give me a buzz: “Call me.”
Ping: Similar to a buzz, except it doesn’t have to be a phone call. You can “ping” someone through any means of contact.
Ready, fire, aim: The idea of being aggressive and moving quickly without over-thinking. Some eggs will likely get broken, to explain one cliché with another.
Get alignment: To get everyone on the same page.
30,000 foot view: The abridged version of an issue. You don’t want every detail, but just a general idea of what’s happening.
Did we miss any? Let us know the phrases that make you frazzled in our comments section below!
Every office job has them: clichéd, often empty phrases that bosses and colleagues utter that make you want to pull your hair out. The financial sector is no different.