Monday, 17 December 2012

Agreeing terms - and a gift idea!

I don't mind a bit of jargon, but there's a time and a place. In specialist publications, where all the readers know what's what, I don't see anything wrong in reducing terms to acronyms appropriately and in my editorial work I come across this a lot. I know that CAGR means compound annual growth rate, that TPL is a third-party logistics provider, and that MOD TSF is the Ministry of Defence's Total Support Force. Fair enough.

I don't even mind people thinking outside the box. It conjures up an image of some brave soul poking his head out from the cardboard flaps to discover a whole new way of doing things. I quite like the idea of drilling down to get to the bottom of a problem. What I don't like, however, is made-up terms being used when there is already a perfectly good word for the job. Top five annoyances at the moment are:
  • The person being mentored is a protege, not a mentee
  • Those people at the conference are delegates, not attendees
  • You can grow a company from scratch, but from then on you expand it 
  • You can look to the future, but you can't look to appoint
  • You don't have to make a forecast going forward - there's nowhere else for a forecast to go
But there's a new annoyance, a buzzword that's all the rage in the world of transport: alliancing. This is what two or more companies are doing when they form an alliance - and there was me thinking that they were allying and had become allies.


Shameless plug alert!

If you get a minute, please pop across to the website of Silver Link Publishing and check out the latest book by Will Adams in the British Railways Past & Present series: Northamptonshire Part 1 South and West. I declare my interest here because Will is a good friend (though I have nothing to gain from sales of the book other than vicarious pleasure). This is a great book full of fab pictures and fascinating details. If you have a railway enthusiast in your circle who needs another book - and my experience of enthusiasts is that they can never have too many books - whether or not they know Northants (or someone with connections to the county but who isn't necessarily a railway buff), I can recommend this. Plug over.

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