Friday, September 10, 2010

Understand jargons even if they dont

This is the first piece that I am posting on my new blog. Am sure most of the people may relate to the instances here, as most of them are'nt bosses! Thankfully so, the reason why organizations survive.

It has always (since my working life of more than 6 years) intrigued me why people use jargons. In fact I am thoroughly confused with the word "jargon" itself. A quick dictionary search reveals the various synonyms it stands for. While one suggests it means "terminology", most of the others reveal it as "limbo" or "slang". The last two are certainly not suggestive of it being a top management phenomenon, but it unfortunately is.

One particular synonym - "Gobbledygook" really made me wonder why in the first place was jargon ever considered as a business expression. I wonder who was that novice genius who overloaded enterprises, and the freshly churned out MBA's with that moronic word!

Over a span of 6 + years, I have heard a variety of jargons and have realized that it's usage in organizations differs hierarchically. Here is how:

The virgins:
These people occupy the lowest level in the organizations' management cadre. They are the freshers. Absolutely virgin in their thoughts as well as pure and clear in their thinking & talking. Unless of course they happen to be MBA's suffering from early syndromes of executive dementia. This period unfortunately happens to be of the shortest duration in the ladder of promotion.

The raging bulls:
At this stage you are learning how to be efficient and innovative. Of course at creating those mesmeric words that only your bosses may understand, but not the people (the virgins) who actually do the job.
Peter principle (for those who do'nt know what this is, scroll to the end) is slowly breeding in the blood and brain of these future "leaders". This happens to be the longest period of one's career. It's obvious that the previous bulls who have risen to the next level of utmost incompetence will stay there for a while. So the wannabe contenders in this stage have to wait for their turn to prove their uselessness.

The imcompetent importants:
At this stage they finally metamorphose in to complete morons. Their work-life revolves around how soon can they conjure up additional moronic jargons, and bask in the euphoric feeling of "I am so wise...that's why, I am the boss". With that self orgasmic and egotistical smile masking their face (when they are in public gatherings), they live in their utopian world where everyone else seems like a lesser mortal. Now, the Peter principle finally applies. In this stage, they will  always surround themselves by other jargon toting visionaries. Thankfully, this period too, happens to be not so long, for an organization!

And all of us want to be here. After all this is what gets noticed and converted in to dollars!

The Peter principle: "In a hierarchy, every employee tends to rise to their level of incompetence"

Jaydeep Deshpande


  1. JD This one is very interesting :) infact "the jargaon" phenomenon is so loaded that at times even simple things are made to beleive highly cosmic.I will write some of my funny experiences (either listening or myself using it infront of serious looking guys) but couple of those that I frequently come across are "strategy"(top guys talking about it without knowning the root reality) and "360 degree approach/view"(from not so top level guys). Dont you think that only someone standing at the Mt Everest peak can actually have 360 degree view :)

  2. JayD now you should follow this post with one about funny jargons like 'gobbeldygook' - which people keep using. Like 'out of the box' ... 'aha moment' ... SWOT...etc.