Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Say what?

I've recently been reminded of how individual companies and organisations not only carry their own individual corporate image and corporate culture, but also their own corporate parlance and turn of phrase.  But can this choice of parlance also be a reflection of the corporation which utters it?

Image copyright of www.savagechickens.com

When I joined my current employer, I was very quickly introduced to the concept of "bandwidth". No, I wasn't just a late starter when it came to getting online,  my colleagues would be commenting on their capacity to carry out a project within a particular timescale.  It's still used a lot today and I love this expression! It's completely digital. Which is good because Latitude is of course a digital company, and the company name is Latitude, and latitude is a bit like bandwith. Sort of. You get the idea.

Back when I worked in one private practice firm, I wasn't doing my job if I didn't have "shedloads" to do at any one moment in time.  A sub-conscious reflection of the name of the firm, Eversheds, I wonder?

Working in-house at a tour operator, colleagues were always polite enough to check if I was "snowed under" before asking me to do any work for them.  Actually, I was never snowed under, I always opted for MyTravel's winter sun holidays instead.  

At a different firm, not a day went by when I wasn't invited to a "catch-up".   No link between the company and the phrase here, just genuinely nice colleagues who had a lot to catch up on after a day spent "picking all of that low hanging fruit".

So, why have I recently been reminded of this link between parlance and organisation?  Well, my current employer is now part of a larger group. It has been for a couple of weeks.  Within that same time I've been asked a question which I've never been asked before.  On 3 separate occasions by 3 separate people. "So, if we cut you down the middle, what would we find?"


I'll continue to watch the link between companies and their choice of phrase more carefully, but for now I'm just relieved that my new colleagues want to get to know me so well! 

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