Revealed: The office buzzwords hated most by finance workers

Last Updated on: 22nd November 2023, 09:08 am

While there is no ‘I’ in ‘team’, there are three in ‘irritating’ which is how more than a third (36%) of finance workers would describe hearing that cliché at work.

Buzzwords and jargon seem to be unavoidable in the modern workplace, no matter how annoying people might find them. Business telecommunications provider, 4Com, has looked into the phenomenon, surveying those working in the finance sector to discover the profession’s most irritating office jargon.

The top five most annoying buzzwords according to the finance industry are:

  1. There’s no ‘I’ in ‘team’ (36%)

  2. Let’s touch base; No brainer (19%)

  3. Thinking outside the box; It’s on my radar (17%),

  4. Close of play; I’ll just ping that over;  Smashed it; 110 percent; Having bandwidth to take on more (14%)

  5. Run the numbers; WIP; Upskill; Taking a deep dive (12%)

Despite a third (31%) of finance workers agreeing office buzzwords are annoying, more than one in five (21%) admit to using them dailly, with one in fifty (2.4%) confessing to using them every hour!

Some claim to using office jargon without really noticing (19%), while others choose to do so in order to make themselves appear more professional (12%), and impress their coworkers (17%). One in ten (10%) UK accountants even confess to using the language at home – and enjoying it.

Additionally, the survey looked into the jargon those in the finance sector use most often. The top five most common office buzzwords and phrases are:

  1. ASAP (52%)

  2. No brainer (48%)

  3. Quick win; Catch up (38%)

  4. To be fair (36%)

  5. Best practice (33%)

Using phrases like “close of play” rather than “end of the day”, and asking to “catch up” instead of asking to discuss, begs the question, why is office slang so popular in the finance sector when workers find them irritating and over a quarter (26%) use them without knowing their meaning?

Commenting on the research, Mark Pearcy, Head of Marketing at 4Com said, “We can all be guilty of using the odd buzzword or two when talking to colleagues. It might sound snappier in an email, but unless the person receiving it knows exactly what you mean, there’s not much point!

“As a telecoms provider, we are all about communication – the more straightforward, the better. When it comes to making a point or explaining your ideas, it’s definitely more important to be understood than to sound slick.”

To help you find out how you fare when it comes to office jargon, 4Com has created a quiz to help Brits identify how annoying they are in the workplace based on the buzzwords and phrases they use the most. Try it out here and see if you are better than your colleagues. True, there’s no ‘I’ in ‘team’, but there’s definitely an ‘M’ and an ‘E’.


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