Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Corporate Speak

Decisioning. Not a word listed in any dictionary that I know of, however the term was a beloved buzz word at my former place of employment. I remember the first time I received an email containing that "word". Said email came from a Senior Vice President, informing me that he and his leadership team intended to do some "decisioning" on their candidates over the course of the next several days. I looked at the email, scratched my head and resisted the strong urge to reply "perhaps you meant make a decision?" Now in all fairness, while I never myself used decisioning in my vocabulary, I did easily adopt much of the corporate terminology. I have in fact described a compromise as a "win-win situation" or discussed a new idea as being "innovative and out of the box". Ultimately I have found that corporate speak actually bled into my life as a stay at home mommy. Even after quitting my job to be with the boys, I heard myself telling my husband that we should touch base about dinner plans later, or that we should circle back about our plans for a friday play date.

After a year of being out of the workplace, I have discovered that it has been quite easy to slip right back into corporate culture. Yes, my neck and back hurt after a few hours of staring at a computer monitor, however I heard myself chirping "Happy Monday!" to my coworkers without thinking twice about what I was saying. Happy Monday? What the hell is happy about the beginning of the work week? Why do we patronize each other with this phony cheerfulness? I thought about this recently as I listened to a voicemail left by an overly enthusiastic staffing vendor. "Rachel!" she sang into the phone "we have an amazing candidate that we cannot wait to share with you. Call me soon so we can touch base on where we are in the search! Can't wait to talk. Make it a great day!!" Make it a great day? Beyond annoying. Perhaps had I not spent 90 minutes in my car fighting traffic, and if I didn't have goosebumps all over my body due to the over air-conditioning, and I suppose if I was in Mexico, drinking a pina colada instead of listening to your stupid voicemail it would be a great day. But as it stands, I would say, mediocre at best.

This rant would not be complete if I failed to mention the greatest offense in corporate proganda -succesories. Yes, succesories, the self-proclaimed way to "make every work station an inspiration station." Hmmm. Please tell me how on earth a framed glossy photo of two figures gracefully paddling a canoe into a pink and orange sunset with the words "TEAMWORK" spelled across the bottom is going to motivate me to toil away on a process mapping project in a windowless conference room? I have such a negative reaction to these offensive posters, that I immediately judge any individual who has one hanging in their office. I briefly consider giving that person the benefit of the doubt, maybe their boss gave it to them, maybe it came with the office... but ultimately I know that I could never really be friends with anyone who would willingly hang this "art" in their space.

Okay, well it is late and I must turn into bed. Besides I have some decisioning to do about what I will possibly wear to work tomorrow.

1 comment:

  1. Rachel: Your blog is great! A least "decisioning" isn't as bad as being the "decider" a la our EX president W.