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The first few months of a new job can be tricky. There are new skills to learn, co-workers to meet and training seminars to attend. Your brain is busy, frantically trying to remember whether the office manager’s name is Audrey, Aubrey, or Doug (it’s definitely one of the three).

So when Todd from accounting tells you he’s going to “run something up the flagpole,” you don’t have the time or the mental capacity to figure out exactly what he’s saying. Fear not: The Corporate Jargon Decoder is here to demystify the meaning behind the mumble-jumble.

Action Item

I’m putting this on my to-do list and I will not get to it for another two weeks.

Best Practice

There are faster and more efficient ways to complete this task, but at this company, we do it like this.


I’m only 73% sure what this is, but I’m going to speak about it assertively and in public to make it sound like I know what I’m talking about.

Deep Dive

I don’t have any other work to assign you, so it’d be great if you could stretch this project out all afternoon.

Disrupt the Landscape

We’re not like other companies. We’re here to mess some sh*t up and make headlines while we do it!


I’m giving you an annoying assignment, but I’d like you to feel like I’m doing you a favor. You’re welcome.

Corporate Jargon: Empower

Happy Hump Day

Life is a meaningless slog towards eternal numbness, but at least there’s only two more days till the weekend.

I’ll Take This Offline

Let’s get coffee and complain.

I’ll Slack You

I have three private channels for when I want to complain, but don’t have time for coffee.

I’ll Chat You

I also have Instagram, Gchat, and Facebook Messenger, and I use them all for work-related complaints, too.

I’ll Loop You in

I’ll copy you on 48 separate emails unrelated to your workload.

Corporate Jargon: Happy Hump Day

I’m Going to Defer to…

Please don’t force me to make another important decision today, it’s after 3 PM.

Knowledge Transfer

Please hover behind me at my desk and watch me do my job for six hours.

Let’s Brainstorm

There are no bad ideas, except for Todd’s.

Let’s Table This

Bad news. Todd was the only one who brought in ideas.

Let’s Circle Back

I’ve had to use the bathroom for the last three hours and I don’t want to talk to you about user experience, OK Todd?

Corporate Jargon: Millennials


A blood-thirsty generation intent on systematically destroying every institution and tradition this country was founded on. Really enjoys brunch and drinking at home.

Mobile First

Computers are out. Let’s try phones. Maybe that’ll turn this ship around?

Plug and Play

This task is meaningless and monotonous. Might as well plug in your headphones and play a murder podcast.

Socially Optimize

I posted about this on Facebook.

Social Currency

I posted about this on Facebook and it got 12 likes.

Social Landscape

I Facebook stalked our competition and they’re getting more likes than us.

So Let’s Connect on LinkedIn

Please don’t friend me on Facebook.

Today’s My Friday

I know the Gregorian calendar says that it’s Tuesday, but I’m leaving for vacation this afternoon, so adjust your expectations accordingly.

While these are (mostly) jokes, it is important to communicate clearly. If you find that you’ve used these words yourself, remember what it felt like when you were trying to decipher the words of Todd from accounting and, well, stop.

Here are a few articles that might help make that possible: