Business Buzzwords No One Wants To Hear

There are tons of business buzzwords flying around. We see them on job postings, in our work emails, and hear them over zoom calls. While more than 75% of people say they believe using buzzwords makes someone sound more professional, that doesn’t mean they’re well-liked or received.

Here are some of the most annoying business buzzwords:

  • “Rockstar”– This word immediately triggers feelings of pressure to be amazing at everything.
  • “Wear many hats”– This sounds like code for: “We really need to hire several people, but we're going to keep costs down by having you do multiple jobs instead."
  • “Thick skin”– aka “get ready to come work in a toxic workplace and deal with harsh criticism, insults, and/or belittling”
  • “Ninja”– Similar to rockstar, this word sounds like a lot of pressure for a potential candidate.
  • “New normal”– At this point, nothing is new it’s just plain normal.
  • “Circle back”– Usually this phrase is used when someone didn’t want to think about it the first time it came up. "No matter how much you would prefer not to deal with this, I'm going to keep bringing it around and around again until you do."
  • "Give 110%"– The code for this is, “We're going to make unreasonable demands of you." Sure, you can also someone to give it their best effort but don’t ask for more than they can give.
  • “Think outside the box” –Ironically, this overused cliche is usually used to motivate people to get creative.


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