Friday 30 August 2019 12:01 am

Revealed: The office jargon buzzwords Londoners detest

Did you get the memo? Business jargon is driving London’s workers up the wall.

Yes, it appears that office workers spared a little of their bandwidth to feeding back on their most-hated phrases that pollute emails, meetings and general workplace chatter.

Read more: Pensions jargon busted: your guide to the experts’ complex lingo

Mobile business current account provider Anna (Absolutely No-Nonsense Admin), touched base with 2,000 Londoners in order to discover which business jargon they think should be dropped going forward.


Getting rid of the most cringe-worthy phrases is not blue sky thinking, the firm insists, as offices would benefit from more clarity and less and today have begun a campaign against such “cringe-worthy business speak.”

Anna’s survey reports that Londoners most hated phrase is “touch base,” followed by “going forward” and “blue sky thinking.”

Workers turning-on their out-of-office messages for their summer holidays said that referring to their time off as “annual leave” is one of their biggest peeves.

The survey showed that 74 per cent of Londoners wished to ban the term and replace it with “holiday”.

Read more: Half of UK employees have fallen out with co-workers over the best dates to take annual leave

Here are London’s top 10 most hated office jargon phrases – and useful translations to help us all realise what they actually mean.

Phrase Translation
1. Touch base“Let’s Talk”
2. Going forwardIn the future
3. Blue sky thinkingCrazy ideas we can’t afford
4. Think outside the boxThink of something I haven’t thought of
5. Annual leave/ Out of OfficeHoliday
6. Reach outGet in touch
7. Low-hanging fruitEasy stuff
8. Can we chat?I’m leaving/ you’re leaving
9. Closing the loopMaking a decision
10. Let’s take this offlineYou’re making it awkward, please stop

Read more: The worst office jargon of 2018, ranked by UK workers


Daljit Singh, head of work culture at Anna, said: “Business language should be straightforward and nonsense-free. Madonna sang about the joys of a much-needed ‘holiday’ – not ‘annual leave’.”

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