Weasel Word Wednesday #3 – around

This is a word I’ve noticed being used more and more in business. To me it sounds like the person using it is afraid of being specific.

A Wikipedia entry on business-speak says it is often used instead of “with” or “on” for example, “are we on track around that meeting tomorrow?” I think it’s also used instead of ‘about’ or ‘for’ and a variety of other more direct options.

Some other examples:

  • Thanks for your drive and commitment around this initiative.
  • We need to be doing more around customer retention (how about using “… to retain customers”)

As with most ‘weasel words’, I think it is also designed to over-dramatise or conceal the real meaning of what is being said. I promise to punch myself if I catch myself using it!

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