Editor's note: "The First 90 Days" is a series about how to make 2016 a year of breakout growth for your business. Let us know how you're making the first 90 days count by joining the conversation on social media with the hashtag #Inc90Days.
Most people use biz-blab because they believe it makes them sound "with it" and "in the know." Buzzwords, however, have a half-life after which trotting them out marks you as a empty suit.
Here are 7 to immediately expunge from your business vocabulary:
If something's not working, obviously you should try something else, but let's stop pretending that's a good thing. Obviously, it would have been better, and you'd be further along, if your original idea had been better thought out.
The idea that people will work together to accomplish a task without leadership and direction is a fantasy. Cramming creative people together creates chaos and drama. Work gets done in spite of "collaboration" rather than because of it.
Almost all successful products are evolutionary and only seem "disruptive" to people who haven't been paying attention. In any case, what does "disruptive" really mean? That there are winners and losers? That's been true forever.
There are always people who have opinions and an audience willing to listen to them. The term "influencers" (as opposed to, say, "experts," or "pundits") implies that they're part of the decision-making process, which is seldom the case.
This is a useless abstraction of what ought to be a specific set of measurable activities. For example, talking about "customer engagement" (whatever that is) distracts from real metrics like response rate and conversions.
Visionaries are a dime a dozen. What's rare is the ability to take an idea and turn it into an actual product. As Thomas Edison famously said: "Genius is 1 percent inspiration and 99 percent perspiration."
7. "Life Hack"
A computer "hack" is a bad thing, even when intentional; it's better characterized by the older term "kludge." Pretending there are easy shortcuts to success is self-deception at its worst.