Sometimes there’s nothing you want more than to hear it straight. Somewhere along the line, perhaps as a result of too many long days, business meetings absorbing schedules, or in some instances, too much time spent watching David Brent in action, an illogical office dictionary full of metaphors, exaggerated claims and even entirely made up words was born.

Today, holding a discussion on something which seems relatively simple can end up being a battle. Not only are these terms extremely overused and equally as irritating, but for those who are new to a professional environment they can be very confusing.

We’ve picked 7 of the biggest clichés out there which you are bound to have heard from your colleagues at least once. To clear up any further misunderstandings we’ve also provided an explanation to match.

1.       Going Forward

Having been popular with politicians, this phrase has now found its way into the boardroom. This phrase hopes to sweep what has happened in the past under the carpet with promises of a brighter future.

2.       Touch base

It seems like people no longer want to “give you a call” or “contact” you. Touching base is the preferred means of communication today.

3.       No Brainer

This turn of phrase originally came from sport, meaning that a team was so well drilled that winning the game required minimal thinking. Today it can also mean an obvious idea, or something you are sure will guarantee success.

4.       Thinking Outside The Box

A favourite with management consultants and executive consultants, if you like to take a different approach to things, then you like to think outside the box. The opposite of a no brainer.

 5.       Blue Sky Thinking

A change in thinking over recent years has turned this phrase from a negative to something to aspire to. This means you should be thinking big, even if don’t always seem realistic.

6.       Thought Shower

A replacement of a classic office cliché, the thought shower entered the offices of many when brainstorm was deemed offensive to epilepsy sufferers. Still to catch on in many instances.

7.       Let’s Take This Offline

If you’ve deviated onto a topic during a meeting which is off schedule you will probably have come across this one. Often a polite dismissal to bring up your topic of conversation on another occasion.

Whether you are a culprit by frequently using such terms or are used to hearing them in full flow on a daily basis, which is the one you love to hate the most?

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