Sunday, March 6, 2011

Work Speak

My Facebook Status:  “I am amazed by how many words corporations come up with to de-humanize humans.”

When I said this I was coming out of a meeting in which people were repeatedly referred to as “resources”.  During my extremely boring, extremely long meeting I started jotting down some typical “work speak” that is thrown around by management.  When someone uses one of these phrases, it tells me that they really want to sound intelligent, which of course means they are severely deficient in the intelligence area.  Below is a table of “work speak” and my plain English translation of what the terms actually mean.  This is the kind of stuff that should be taught in college…


Work Speak Plain English Translation What this really means
Resources People Completely disposable lemmings
Electronic Suggestion Box Email used for suggestions Please email the President’s Secretary’s Secretary’s Assistant and we will never get back to you.  Thank you!
Visibility Making someone noticeable Hey!  Hey!  Over here!  Look at me!  I’m making my people do all my work for me and I’m taking all the credit!
Process A set of rules that need to be followed Completely useless steps that your coworkers make up so they are deemed indispensible to the company.
End of Job Finish This doesn’t exist.  You will never reach the end of anything….not until your company works you into a fatal heart attack.  That is the only rest you will ever get.
One-Offs A rare circumstance Every time you try to do anything you will have a one-off issue.  Like the department responsible for approving all your work deciding they hate you and they will never ever approve anything you ever do.  Ever.  Never.
Career Pyramid A lateral career move This means that the career ladder is gone so you will never make any more money or advance in any way whatsoever.  You will die in that same cubicle, in that same chair with that same shitty printer that never works.
Action-item Log List of things I need to address Ex. I hear your concern and I will add that to my Action-item Log.  I don’t give a crap about your opinions and nothing you say will ever matter.  I don’t even have an Action-item Log you worthless loser!  BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
Collaboration Working together as a team I made my assistant do all my work for me while I went to Vegas and hired five hookers, two of which are now dead.   
Root Issues The real problem The real problem is that the entire management team is incompetent.  The only reason they graduated college was because they paid some poor nerd to do all their work for them.  The reason they have been promoted over and over again is simply because life isn’t fair. 
Functionality Performing a  function This software will never work the way we told you it would when you paid twelve bajillion dollars for it.
Roll-out Introduction of a new product This is when we introduce a new product that wasn’t ready at all and doesn’t do anything it is supposed to because if we don’t produce something NOW then we all will be fired and have to live in our cars. 
Go-to Person A person who always gets the job done This is the person who gets taken advantage of and is expected to finish four hundred projects at once, within a week.  This person is the one most likely to hang themselves in the supply closet. 
Target Date When something is supposed to get done This is the date you tell your boss a project will be finished to make them go away so you can continue playing solitaire in peace.
Turn-around This is how fast something gets done Every department aims to have a faster turn-around time to avoid being laid off and replaced with Indians, Guatemalans, or Texans.
Deliverables The end result or outcome of a project This is something you will see fourteen years from when the project was started.  It may take even longer depending on how many project managers get laid off in the process.
Business-Users The people who use a product. These are the people you scam into using your half-functional product.  You make loads of money off of them when they buy it and then you charge them even more to fix it when it inevitably doesn’t work.
Team Meeting Department meeting This is a meeting in which your boss tells you about all the de-humanizing new HR rules and processes you have to follow or else be thrown in a tank full of sharks, eels, lochness monsters and company executives.
Tasks Things you have to do This is what your day is filled with.  This is what is on the endless list of crap you have to do in order to keep your crappy job with your crappy benefits and crappy salary so you can pay for your crappy house and two crappy cars and be demeaned by your crappy managers every day for the rest of your crappy life.  Crap.
Kick-Off Event start These are gatherings the HR department has (the term was stolen from the project managers) to start an event because they have nothing to do when they aren’t laying off hordes of people. 
Enhancements Improved Quality This is when we made something do what we said it was going to do twelve years ago but just now got around to fixing it.
Focus Something management wants to improve Just pray the “focus” is not on anything you are responsible for.  If it is, quit before they start focusing.  You’re screwed no matter what you do.
Self-Evaluation A process in which you review yourself. Your boss has no idea what you do during the day so please tell him so he can go ahead and not give you a raise…no matter what you say.
Any Acronym A set of letters used to abbreviate and refer to a longer term No one knows what any of these actually mean.  People use them so you get confused and stop talking to them.
Fitness Facility Gym This is the state-of-the-art workout facility the execs built in the company basement instead of giving you a decent raise.  This gives them more time to work out so they can continue to attract younger and younger mistresses.
Group Lead, Supervisor, Manager, Director, Vice President Management People with no job responsibilities except the following:
1. To schedule meetings all day long to make you talk about the work you need to do and take up all your time so you can never actually do the work because you are explaining the work needed to everyone else.
2. To yell at you when you don’t get the work done because you were in meetings all week.

2 comments:

  1. I am often a "go-to" for shit work in our department. It's great. Our supply closet isn't big enough though it's a cabinet so I'll probably just use a forklift out in the warehouse.

    LOVE the self-eval explanation, spot on. I just got done doing that.

    ReplyDelete
  2. completely agree...the other HUGE problem in U.S. work environments is that the majority of states are at-will employment under the law..been that way for decades..if some low life who survived at work because he/she has a in w/ daddy, relative, etc. and doesn't like you, BYE! amazing how much of our lives now are determined by others moral well being or lack thereof on the corporate ladder, "chain of command"

    ReplyDelete