Business Words that should be banned

Topic Views - 92


Call Centre Helper

There was an interesting article on Harvard Business called "10 Business Words to Ban"

Are there any words that you would ban?

I can think of a couple that I would like banned

- Blue Sky Thinking

- Voice Portal

- "We are experiencing unusually high call volumes"

What do you think?


What about

- Synergise

- 'run it up the flagpole'

- think outside the box (yuck!)



Call Centre Helper

Good ones.

I've never heard of 'run it up the flagpole' - what does that mean?

Account Manager


Another one that needs to be dropped out of the dictionary is :

Bascially !!!

Quality Assurance

I've heard "run it up the flagpole and see who salutes" but never in a call center environment. Basically, share the idea and see if anyone is interested.

I'm tired of hearing the phrase No Sacred Cows myself.

Project Manager

First Data

Stick a pin in it - As in for later on

Flag it up - Draw attention to

Both of those do grate on me.

Management bingo words. What happened to plain talking?

Quality Manager


An annoying one for me is "get a flavour of"


J.Lodge Corporation

One that has run its course is, "anecdotal," and "mining for data."

And when did problems get the new name "challenges"?

Director of Consulting

h2i Consulting Limited

Pet hates for me are:

'Pushing the envelope'

'Skin in the Game'

'Low hanging fruit'

'I'll talk to this slide' as in 'I'll present this bit'

'Key Drivers' - are these small people driving keys with wheels?

'I'd like to challenge that' meaning 'With the greatest respect, I beg to differ..'

The term"Grow our customers"makes me cringe.


I cant stand the following phrases:

"in this economic climate" (used by people who don't know what they are talking about)

"to touch base" (uuuugh)

"actioning" (what is wrong with "do"?)

"organic" (its just unnecessary)

"to be fair" (used at the end of a sentence- more so as an afterthought)


Call Centre Helper

I also heard yesterday about the "elephant in the room" which refers to the elephant in the room that you don't talk about i.e. a taboo subject

Trainer (L&D)


When the business asks for "Bespoke Learning Interventions" - Surely each course run is going to be bespoke to the need!

Sales Trainer

Sage UK

How about the way we call all interactions "Conversations"

"...I'm going to have to have a conversation with him about his productivity..."

"...The managers are going to have to have a conversation with thier teams about the changes..."

Operations Manager

West Bromwich Building Society

I'm sure everybody will hate me for it, but I am getting sick and tired of hearing the phrase "customer journey"....

Maybe it's just me, they aren't going on a journey - they are sat on a phone to a Contact Centre....

Old age grumpiness and the inane use of management BS is catching up with me!!

Want to add a comment?

Not found what you were looking for?

1. Try searching through our site.
2. Still not got an answer?

Why not ask the Call Centre Helper Community? Click here to ask your question