Not a day goes by without hearing or using a buzzword in the office. Emails, memos, and staff meetings are loaded with corporate jargon whether we like it or not. You might be asked to “get your ducks in a row” or “buy in” to a new strategy, so it is important to know what these words and phrases mean. Office talk has been around for years and it has no intention of leaving.

Many corporate leaders believe that an emotional connection can be created through words and phrases. The hope is that this connection is established within every employee and the corporation itself. A meticulously placed buzzword can very well speak to one’s emotions making him or her feel like a valued member of the team.

As an employee or potential employee, it is imperative to know the jargon spoken and used within the workplace. Failure to understand the corporate talk could keep you “out of loop” and searching for a job. Let’s identify and define some of the most common corporate jargon used today so that you will be “in the know” and ready to banter out buzzwords in the office.


office jargon for your information fyi


Love It or Hate It but You Gotta Know It!


  • COB  –   close of business
  • Think outside the box  –  be creative; do not be ordinary
  • No brainer  –  it is so obvious that it goes without saying
  • Drill down  –  thoroughly investigate the matter at hand
  • Get your ducks in a row  –  make sure everything is accurate and in place
  • Buy in  –  to agree with and accept as an idea
  • Action that  –  put an idea, strategy, or method into practice
  • Touch base  –  check in and discuss
  • Heads up  –  notify; give notice
  • On the radar  –  it is being considered
  • Bring it to the table  –  address it with the entire group
  • Crack the whip  –  take charge and use your authority to make someone or something work better
  • EOP  –  end of play
  • Game changer  –  something that causes a fundamental shift
  • Ping  –  contact or get back to
  • It’s not rocket science  –  it is not difficult at all
  • Reach out  –  make contact with someone
  • Benchmark  –  reference point for a project, approach, etc.
  • Best practice  –  the most effective way of doing something
  • Re-invent the wheel  –  use an existing idea and adjust it to make it your own
  • Park  –  put something on hold
  • Dot the I’s and cross the T’s  –  pay close attention to every minute detail
  • Backburner  –  put it on hold for now
  • Swamped  –  extremely busy
  • Peel the onion  –  thoroughly scrutinize and examine the issue at hand