Buzzword (or Bullshit) Bingo

BUZZWORD (OR BULLSHIT) BINGO Everyone at one time or another has been subjected to long, extremely boring meetings and, or, conference calls. You know, the type of mind numbing meeting where the boss goes on and on spouting what essentially is gibberish. Now there is a way to fight back, or at least keep yourself entertained. It’s known as Buzzword (or bullshit bingo) and it’s a game that is sweeping its way across the corporate world. There is definitely not a shortage of game instructions. Just Google” bullshit bingo” and you will get 739,000 hits and” buzzword bingo” will generate 251,000 hits. Essentially the game goes like this; take a piece of paper and divide it into squares like a traditional bingo card and fill the squares with various buzzwords ( or bullshit if you will) like “paradigm”, “out of the loop” or “synergy”, you get the idea. When you hear any one of these words or phrases you mark your card and if you get a diagonal, vertical, or horizontal pattern you shout “bullshit”. Just like the “newspeak” that George Orwell wrote about in his novel “1984” the corporate world has its own version. Meaningless phrases and words taken ridiculously out of context seem to be the norm. Here are some of the more egregious examples and what they really mean;

Paradigm-do you know the definition of this word? I don’t and chances are neither does your boss. If you want to have some real fun and if you don’t value your job that much or are thinking of quitting anyway, ask your boss for a definition of this word.

Downsize- You’re about to lose your job.

Outsource- We’re giving your job to someone in the third world.

Smoke Test- What you did in the 60’s.

Cluster Teams- Do I really have to say anything about this one.

Go to Market- What my big toe did when I was a toddler.

Synergy- Again, ask for a definition, kick back and watch the fun.

Restructuring- You’re going to do more work for less money.

Win-Win- Give me a break! If someone wins obviously someone loses.

No Brainer- Your boss’s IQ.

Embedded- Think, your boss and his mistress.

At the end of the day- What we’re all looking forward to, especially during this meeting.

Client –server- The woman your boss was with on his last business trip.

Viral- see the previous entry.

Culture change- Someone is going to lose their job, we just haven’t decided who.

Performance based- If they paid you according to performance you’d be making more than the boss.

Expeditious- Sounds like something straight out of Mary Poppins.

24/7- Every time I hear this I feel like strangling someone. Used by those who are not well versed using time and dates.

There are many more examples such as, “networking”, “ballpark”, I could easily go on and on just like your boss in a meeting. There are many sites devoted to Buzzword bingo and it’s less genteel cousin Bullshit bingo. You may download several versions of the game cards for free. So at the next dreaded “team meeting” distribute the cards among the other attendees and have some fun. You could play for some sort of prize such as drinks or a lunch or you could organize the game like a football pool with a monetary prize. Have fun but try not to get caught, and good luck! For more bingo related articles go to BingoHouse.com