The Top 20 Most Annoying Buzzwords and Phrases in the Workplace

Accountemps Survey Reveals "Dynamic," "Deep Dive" and "Leverage" Among Most Overused Buzzwords

TORONTO, Sept. 4, 2014 /CNW/ - While today's workplace is awash with buzzwords and clichés, certain terms and phrases are more common -- and grating -- than others, according to an Accountemps survey of human resources (HR) managers. "Dynamic," "deep dive" and "leverage" were among the most overused and annoying business buzzwords cited by those polled.

The survey was developed by Accountemps, the world's first and largest specialized staffing service for temporary accounting, finance and bookkeeping professionals. It was conducted by an independent research firm and is based on interviews with more than 600 HR managers at U.S. and Canadian companies with 20 or more employees.

"When it comes to effective communication in the workplace, the importance of clarity cannot be stressed enough," said Dianne Hunnam-Jones, Canadian district president of Accountemps. "To avoid ambiguity and confusion when communicating, the use of buzzwords and industry jargon should be avoided in favour of straightforward and uncomplicated language."

Managers were asked, "What is the most annoying or overused phrase or buzzword in the
workplace today?
" Their responses included:

  • "Out of pocket"
  • "Deep dive"
  • "Forward-thinking"
  • "Dynamic"
  • "Let me get back to you."
  • "Pick your brain"
  • "Employee engagement"
  • "LOL"

In what may be a sign of both employee burnout and improved job prospects, some of the phrases suggest workers now feel more comfortable venting about their workloads and salaries:

  • "It's not my job."
  • "It's above my pay grade."
  • "When am I going to get a raise?"
  • "I am overwhelmed."
  • "Crunch time"

Some buzzwords simply refuse to go away. These well-worn words and sayings also were cited in similar Accountemps surveys conducted in 2004 and 2009:

  • "Win-win"
  • "Value-added"
  • "Think outside the box."
  • "Leverage"
  • "At the end of the day"
  • "Circle back"
  • "Synergy"

About Accountemps
Accountemps, a Robert Half company, is the world's first and largest specialized staffing service for temporary accounting, finance and bookkeeping professionals. The staffing firm has more than 340 offices worldwide. More resources, including online job search services and the Accountemps blog, can be found at accountemps.com.Follow Robert Half on Twitter at twitter.com/RobertHalf_CAN, and gain insights on the latest financial hiring and salary trends at www.roberthalf.ca/salarycentre.

SOURCE Accountemps

For further information: Naz Araghian, 416.350.2330 ext. 62132, naz.araghian@roberthalf.com