Office Slang Terms:

SlangSlang Meaning
2.0The next generation of ideas and processes, like Web 2.0 or Education 2.0, as compared to the old boring 1.0 version
30,000 foot viewSeeing the big picture, like the view of everything down below from an airplane, which gives you perspective. Managers and executives like to take this view.
800-Pound GorillaA business that dominates their industry like Microsoft, Google or Facebook. There's an old joke: What do you do with an 800-pound gorilla? Anything he wants.
Action itemA task that needs to be done, but calling it an action item makes it sound more important.
Advise"Used in official sounding business communication like ""Please advise which color flux capacitor you would like to purchase"".
AnalyticsThe statistical analysis of business data to help predict or improve future performance.
Around"Used instead of ""with"" or ""on"". Examples: ""are we on track around the merger tomorrow?"" or ""I am struggling to get up to speed around the new accounting software"".
Ballpark figureAn estimate, an educated guess. A guesstimate.
Bandwidth"A person's available time to complete something, like ""I don't have the bandwidth to handle another project this month.""
Best in breedThe top company in an industry.
Best practicesOptimal tactics and strategies.
Bizmeth"Short for ""business method"".
Blocking and tacklingBasic tasks.
Blue sky thinkingIdealistic or visionary ideas - not always with practical application.
Boil the oceanTaking on a very difficult or impossible task (the ocean can't be boiled).
Bottom out/ Bottom line"Used as a verb to indicate that something needs to be done urgently - for example ""we need to get that bottom-lined before the end of play today.""
BrandingA company's marketing, related to the overall feeling evoked by the company's products, advertisements, and graphic design.
Brick-and-mortarA business with real-world address that deals with people face to face, like a bank of grocery store. The opposite of an Internet business.
Bring Your ""A"" Game"Be prepared, do your best.
Business landscapeThe threats and opportunities facing a business.
Business process outsourcing (BPO)Replacing in-house knowledge-based services IP research for patents; legal and medical services; R&D, and animation/design with labor from an outside firm, many times offshore (like in India).
Business-to-Business (B2B)Selling to other businesses, not consumers.
Business-to-Consumer (B2C)Selling to consumers, not other businesses.
Buzzword compliantImplies a product supports features simply because they are currently fashionable.
Change agentA person who leads change within the organization. Sometimes an event or condition can even be a change agent.
Chase shiny objects"Chasing anything that moves or looks new or enticing. Example usage: ""Stop chasing shiny objects and get down to the business of growing your business"".
Client engagementA meeting.
Client-centric / customer-centricFocusing on the customer to keep them happy and satisfied.
Communicate"A fancy way of saying ""say"" or ""tell"".
Context"Often used in place of ""background"" or ""information"". Used in conversation such as ""What's the context?"" or ""Give me some context""
Co-opetitionA business strategy based on game theory that is a combination of cooperation and competition, where companies that are in the same market work together in the exploration of knowledge and research of new products.
Core competenciesA business's main strengths or strategic advantages.
Cover all directions of the compassTrying to make things acceptable for all stakeholders.
DeckPowerpoint slides used for a presentation.
Deep diveGetting into the detail.
DeliverableSomething that is owed and has to be done by a certain date.
DisambiguateTo clarify.
DownsizingCutting expenses by laying people off.
Drill-downTo look more closely
Drinking the Kool-AidTrusting in things said by authority figures. A fervent devotion to a certain company or technology.
Drop dead dateThe absolute final possible date for deliverable.
Drop the ballTo make a blunder of fail.
Eating your own dogfoodUsing a product yourself which you sell to others.
EBITDAEarnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization. Used to compare profitability between companies.
Elephant in the roomAn important and obvious topic that everyone is aware of, but is not discussed because it would be uncomfortable.
Elevator pitchA short summary of a product, service, or company, used to get your point across quickly (like in the time frame of an elevator ride). Many times given in person to a venture capitalist or angel investor to obtain funding.
End user perspectiveWhat a customer thinks of a product or service or how they feel having to or after using a product service
EngagementA project.
Enterprise sales"""Enterprise"" is another name for a business. ""Enterprise Sales"" refers to complex sales dealing with large contracts with long sales cycles and multiple decision makers.
ETA"Can mean ""Estimated Time of Arrival"" but also refers to your estimated time to completion of a task.
Event horizonA turning point in the life of a company.
Eyeball drivenDepends on views for success. For example, websites that depend on ad (banner) impressions are eyeball driven.
Face timeTime spent meeting face to face with someone, not remotely by email/phone/text. Sometimes refers to just showing up at a location and interacting with people.
FacilitateTo conduct or oversee, like for a meeting.
Game changerA person, company or event that radically changes a situation, usually with new and different ideas that stand out from the crowd.
Gantt chartShows the schedule of a project along with other details.
Going forward/Moving forwardA confident gesture towards the future, but generally vague on timing, which usually means it can be removed from a sentence with little or no effect on its overall
GranularIn excessive detail.
GuidedUsed to abdicate responsibility for a decision, especially where the consequences of making a poor choice could be severe.
Hard stopThe absolute final possible ending time of a meeting.
Have the vendor in our pocketKeeping a vendor / contractor paid
Heads Up"Used to ask for a report/update on something, ex: ""Give me a heads up on this.""
Herding catsA difficult chore.
High levelAn abbreviated explanation of what would otherwise be an elongated report, including only the most pertinent details.
Hit the ground runningTo start doing something that you have already prepared for so that you do not waste any time.
Holistic approachThe entire organization is considered in its processes and policies to sure the business is running at its full potential, instead of having strong and weak areas.
Home runA big financial win. Example: The investor passed on the deal because he did not think it could be a home run.
Human capitalPeople
In the loopKnowing what's going on and being kept informed
In the weedsThe view by the staff who actually does the work
IncentTo encourage
InterfaceTo communicate.
It’s not brain surgeryIt is not hard to do.
it’s not rocket scienceIt is not hard to do.
Joined up thinkingA wider point of view from discussing the viewpoints of each organization and coming to an agreement or compromise.
Knowledge process outsourcing (KPO)"eals largely in services that are highly ""knowledge-based"", such as: intellectual property research for patent applications; legal and medical services; training, consultancy, and research and development in fields such as pharmaceuticals and biotechnology; and animation and design
Lack of liquidityIf an investment is not liquid, it is very hard to sell.
Land and expandA strategy to sell a small solution and then grow it within the client's environment
Lean forward and Lean back mediaA Lean-forward medium has people actively engaged, like the Web where users search for things and look for content. TV, books, and magazines are examples of lean-back mediums because you just sit down and veg out.
LeverageTo use something to maximum advantage.
Light a fire under him/herTo motivate somebody.
LogisticsCommonly used by shipping companies (Fedex, UPS, etc.). The management of the flow of goods between the origin and destination. Involves the integration of information, transportation, inventory, warehousing, material handling, packaging, and security.
Long tailA retail strategy of selling a few each of a large number of unique, less popular items. Examples include, Netflix, and eBay.
Low hanging fruitEasy
Make it popMake it stand out.
MetricsWays to measure something.
MindshareThe development of consumer popularity and awareness by using advertising and promotion. Brands compete for mindshare.
Mission criticalIf something is mission critical, its failure will result in the failure of business operations.
My two centsGiving my opinion
net-net"Meaning ""get to the point"". Also, an investing technique where a company is valued only on its net current assets.
New economyA global economy based on high growth industries such as advanced technology (Internet) and biotech.
Next generationThe next stage or version of a product, service, or technology.
Off the shelfIn-stock, not custom made.
OffshoringAlso known as Offshore outsourcing, or something being offshorable.
On the fritzBroken.
On the radarWhen you are aware of something. Well-known.
Open the kimonoTransparency and full disclosure.
OperationalizeTo define an abstract concept in such a way that it can be practically measured.
Out-of-pocketA non-reimbursable expense you need to pay for yourself. Also used to mean somebody is unavailable.
Paradigm shiftA revolution in thinking. A transformation from one way of thinking to another.
Pass the monkeyTo pass the responsibility for a problem to someone else.
Pick the low-hanging fruitGoing for the easiest option.
PingTo contact somebody, like by email, text, or phone.
ProcurementBuying things.
Pushing the envelopeGoing outside normal boundaries to achieve a target or goal
Raft of measuresA collection of proposals or schemes
Reaching OutTo contact
Reinvent the wheelTo duplicate a method already created by others.
Return on Investment (ROI)How much profit was made in relation to how much capital was invested. ROI (%) = Net profit ($) / Investment ($) * 100 %
Reverse fulfilmentProcessing returned products.
RightshoringPutting jobs where they belong. For example outsourcing the less important processes overseas and keeping the complex work in-house.
RightsizingCutting expenses by firing people. Downsizing.
Run the numbersDo the calculations.
Sandwich methodA way of providing feedback where you positive feedback (a compliment) in the beginning and end but in the middle give constructive criticism. Also known as the hamburger method.
Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX)Legislation enacted in 2002 to protect shareholders in all public companies after the Enron, WorldCom, Tyco International, and Adelphia financial scandals, with the goal of eliminating accounting errors and financial fraud.
Seamless integrationMaking a change without causing any errors, complications, or interruption in service.
Shovel-readyThe planning is done work can start right away, as soon as funding or approval is granted.
Singing from the same sheet musicShowing a united front in public.
Skin in the gameShowing confidence by investing your own money in something, instead of just getting paid to do it.
Solutions providerA vendor.
Spinning the platesMulti-tasking
SustainabilityDevelopment that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.
Sweating the assetsGetting every last drop of usability and value out of of the assets you already have, like by cutting costs and virtualizing.
SWOT AnalysisA strategic planning method used to evaluate the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities & Threats in a project or business venture. Generates ideas and strategic goals, and helps match the company's resources and capabilities to the competitive environment in which it operates.
SynergyTwo business participants or elements working together to produce an effect greater than the sum of their individual effects.
Take it offlineTalk about it later
Talk the talk, walk the walkIf you say you can do something, demonstrate you can do it.
Tear down the silosRemove barriers
The 80-20 rulePareto's Principle - Focus on the 20% of something matters because 20% of something is responsible for 80% of the results. So for example 80% of an assignment can be finished in 20% of the time, 20% of the defects cause 80% of the problems, and 20% of the people in a country own 80% of the wealth.
Think outside the boxNovel or creative thinking where you think differently, unconventionally, or from a new perspective.
Touch base"To contact or speak with. ""Let's touch base on Friday about the new computer software.""
Unique selling proposition (USP)Something that differentiates a product from the competition.
Value propositionA statement explaining why a customer should buy the company's product or service.
Value-addSomething that improves a value or service.
Vertical marketA subset of a larger industry which meets the needs of a particular industry. A niche market.
VisibilityTo know about something.
Win-win solutionProviding a product or service which makes everyone happy.