You will come across lots of business cliches in the business world. Many times they are used as an excuse for something you should be doing. It’s time to get rid of the crutches. Here’s a list of some of the most common clichés which purchasing managers should never use:
There is no I in team: Sure there is. As an individual member of a purchasing team you have an important role to play. Don’t try to hide behind the team. Stand out and strive to help be a valuable member of the team.
Work smarter, not harder: Lazy people use this as an excuse; they claim to be working smarter when in fact they are barely working. You’ve probably heard the slogan “work hard, play hard.” Working hard and smart is not an either/or scenario. Word Hard, Work Smart. Do both.
Going forward: Going forward can sometimes be an excuse to procrastinate. It’s a way to avoid dealing with changes today or the consequences of mistakes from yesterday. When you make a mistake take ownership and take action today to make it better.
Open the kimono: This popped up a few years ago as an alternative to “revealing information.” It is one of the business cliches which are awkward in any sense. If you are trying to keep this one alive, don’t.
Blue sky thinking: This can be usedwith a negative or positive connotation. If an idea is too unrealistic this cliché would imply that the thought was not grounded in reality. On a more positive note it would be more along the lines of dreaming big. In this case it may be better to say what you mean.
Synergy: It is one of those words that has been used in many applications. It can be used to describe businesses working together, but it has so many applications from drug synergy, pest, toxicology to biological sciences. Because it has been used so often in so many ways it may give the impression that you yourself are a little dated.
On the Same Page: Thisone has become very common, almost everyday language. How do you feel when someone asks you this? Does it annoy you? Maybe consider going back to regular explanations and simply asking if it makes sense or if everyone is in agreement on how to proceed.
With all due respect: This is because it’s a sneaky phrase. It often brings the opposite effect of disrespect. It’s like a liar who has to qualify his statements by saying “Honest.” Or maybe you’ve heard someone lay out an insult and then tack on “just sayin’” at the end as though that makes it alright. If you are acting with honesty you don’t need to vocalize it and say “honest” and if you are speaking with respect you don’t need to try and qualify it by adding “with all due respect”. Let your actions and tone of voice carry the meaning.
Giving 200%: No one is able to give 200%. It’s baseball season and little boys are out there learning and the coaches are saying what? “Do your best.” You want to personally do your best and inspire others to do their best. You can’t produce or give beyond your capacity to do or give.
We’ve all said them. That is how they become clichés. That is also why you should stop using them. As a professional you have the opportunity to set yourself apart from the competition. Rather than making use of these out dated clichés, just get straight to the point or use witty alternatives. You should also follow up with solid examples when necessary. Doing this is a subtle way to elevate your status and professionalism.