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  • Writer's pictureJane Rubin

The Space Between - BS Bingo

Updated: Mar 8, 2023

It has always amazed me the way new words and phrases are regularly born and grown in the workplace. My husband and I have had a lot of laughs sharing new ones we had heard at work. Some were so cute and clever, 'Taking the the training wheels off', and others more specific to the workplace, 'Back to the drawing board'. Some were a little gross, 'Have some skin in the game', some were sports related, 'tee it up", and others were simply funny, 'Throw him under the bus', that we kidded about writing a book about them in our retirement. We came to call this collection of new language, Corporate BS Bingo. In a self-assignment this week, I found that there have been studies of these words - so no book writing is necessary. The expressions are categorized in may ways including, most popular by the year - like baby names!

To qualify as BS Bingo, the expressions needed to be fresh and new and use unlikely words to correctly emphasize a point. They seemed to emerge out of no where and then slowly creep into everyone's vocabulary until they were heard throughout the organization. And to add a little emphasis, they had to sound cool, so that the user came across as being very 'with it'.

Some business articles I read this week suggested that in the 'big picture' these expressions are risky to use and they could suggest the speaker is insincere, sarcastic or minimizing the importance of the topic at hand. I suppose that depends if they are used in a court room, board room or lunchroom. I always found them fun and at times, impossibly difficult to avoid using.

I found a new one during my homework and am waiting to hear it 'on the 'street' - 'The strategic staircase'. I'll bet that expression and others like it blossom during business planning cycles. That should be next year at my prior employer!

I wonder if there are any BS Bingo expressions concerning retirement?! Have your heard any?

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