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Office Jargon Makes You Look ‘Incompetent’ Says Survey

A new survey has revealed the workplace phrases that make colleagues think we are ‘incompetent’ at our jobs.

According to communications firm Enreach, which performed the survey of 1,500 Brits, using jargon can make others think you do not know how to do your job.

‘Blue-sky thinking’ - intended to mean finding new ideas - is the phrase that those surveyed found the most annoying.

‘Think outside the box' was found to be the second most annoying phrase, with 26% of respondents frustrated by it.

But a massive 90% of those surveyed believed using these phrases was an attempt to cover up a lack of knowledge by their colleagues.

The survey also found that 43% thought the phrases made it seem like a colleague was trying too hard to impress the office.

But while we may hate hearing the phrases, 64% admitted to using the jargon at some point.

“At a time when we still may not be face to face with our colleagues, simple, clear communication is one of the most important things that we all need,” said Duncan Ward from Enreach.

“Business jargon is clearly making that difficult, with the results from this study demonstrating that phrases like ‘blue sky thinking’ are unhelpful and even off-putting, and that people would prefer to understand more clearly what their colleagues mean.”

Office phrases that are the most hated:

  • Blue-sky thinking
  • Think outside the box
  • Low-hanging fruit
  • Touch base