Here at QCM, we’ve noticed a propensity in business to overuse buzzwords. This is common in the internet/social media age, and nothing to be up in arms about. However, this becomes misrepresentation when these popular terms are used inaccurately to describe your business practises.
Buzzwords are a product of the world we live in, so let’s just be clear that they’re nothing bad. There are several Buzzwords floating around that have become so overused that their true meaning is becoming obscured.
Take the word Authenticity; you see it so often when a company describes their dealings. Authentic, in most correct uses, refers to something as genuine or traditional.
This is a case of using a word in the wrong context. Businesses use the word Authentic because they’re dancing around the issue. The issue they’re trying to address is “honesty”. But this is a powerful word, and it takes a lot to stick to powerful words like this. A business wants to emphasise their integrity, but in softer less binding language.
This is where Authentic replaces Honesty.
By using the word honesty, you draw attention to this particular quality in your company. A direct word like Honesty communicates a strong business ethos while a less direct word like Authenticity promotes a vague idea.
Another misused Buzzword in business is Transparency. This is an easy word to throw around when trying to distinguish your company, but this is an example of just an incorrectly used term. Transparent means that you are completely clear and easy to perceive. It’s a simple enough concept, but companies continually use it when they do not follow its definition.
If you’re claiming to be Transparent but not sharing sales figures, the software you use or what you pay for it, then you are misusing the word. This is not to say that it’s necessarily bad business to withhold this information, but it does mean that you lack transparency.
Using Buzzwords in business is only human nature, but you should not use them to create the illusion of qualities when describing your company. Take things back to basics; If you’re going to talk the talk then you must walk the walk. Say what you mean, be up front with clients.
By using the implied meaning of these words, you’re using them only for your immediate needs. Industry Buzzwords often have one meaning inside of the business world, yet another in the client’s realm. By more closely examining these word’s true definition, you can better represent your business and better serve your clients!