The Ridiculous Business Jargon Dictionary: T-words

Do you wonder where your co-workers picked up all the ridiculous things they say? From fresh-faced interns to top management, everyone drops one of these gems occasionally. We can only hope that you're not here to actually add buzzwords to your vocabulary.

Table [v.]To set an issue aside. "We'll have to table your complaints for now and get back to them when we have more time."Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Table stakes [n.]The minimum resources needed to enter a market. Occasionally misspelled as "table steaks," causing confusion and hunger.
Suggested by Amanda
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Tacit knowledge [n.]A complicated way of referring to information that only exists within the head of an employee(s). The challenge is often to find a way to record this knowledge before they ditch the company.Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Tactical [adj.]Concerned with low-level details and execution. "Don't tell me you're an 'ideas guy' when your team is begging for tactical leadership."
Suggested by Chris K.
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter


Tailwinds [n.]Positive market conditions that favor success. "We're going to capitalize on current tailwinds to carry us into 2011."
Suggested by Kyle R.
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Take home [n.]Final net pay after all deductions have been taken off.Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Take the knock [v.]To sell at a loss.Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Talent [n.]A cynical way to refer to unskilled labor. "We're short-staffed on the fryer this week. Get more talent in the door."Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Talent [n.]Key skilled labor. "Never lose sight of The Talent. Acquire it. Keep it happy. Full stop."
Suggested by Scott
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Talk to [v.]A self-important way of saying 'talk about'. "I'm going to talk to this report."
Suggested by Dave
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Talk turkey [v.]To converse in a serious way. "Step into my office so we can talk turkey."Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Tall Foreheads [n.]1) A swipe at older white men with receding hairlines who predominate most senior management teams.
2) Experts or intellectuals.
"I made the pitch to a room full of Tall Foreheads."
Suggested by Michael A.
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Tangentery [n.]Distracting side topics. "Let's not get off into tangentery again."
Suggested by Jargo Girl.
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Tap dancer [n.]A person who seems busy and productive, but stays in pretty much the same place.
Suggested by Tony.
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Tart up [v.]To artificially increase the attractiveness of something. "I think their auditing firm has been tarting up the financials again."
Suggested by September F.
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Tasked [v.]To be given an assignment. "I've been tasked with bringing coffee to the meeting."
Suggested by Randi H.
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Tassel-loafers [n.]Construction site visitors that can be identified as upper management by the style of their shoes.
Suggested by Chad W.
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Tee up [v.]To provide an introduction or transition for the next speaker during a presentation. "Your question is a nice tee-up for our next presenter, Jim, who will speak to that very topic."
Suggested by Kelly B.
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Teflon shoulders [n.]The coworker who always manages to wiggle out of assignments. "Total immunity to delegation, this guy. Nothing sticks."
Suggested by PJ
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Testiculate [UK-v.]To wave one's arms while at the same time, talking bollocks.
Suggested by Tom P.
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
That dog won''t hunt [exp.]Your plan seems promising, but will never work in practice.Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
The juice is not worth the squeeze [exp.]The pain or sacrifice outweighs the expected benefits.
Suggested by Cool rockin' daddy.
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Think the unthinkable [exp.]A meaningless challenge taken from the title of a British sitcom about the perils of management consulting.Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Three-martini lunch [n.]A business meal with multiple alcoholic drinks. Can be used to 'encourage' a prospective client.Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Throw the dolly out of the pram [UK-exp.]A childish, inappropriate outburst in response to frustration. "Now don't throw the dolly out of the pram here; calm down and let's talk about this rationally."
Suggested by Carol F.
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Throw under the bus [v.]To avoid responsibilty for a mistake by blaming someone else. "That b**** from finance really threw me under the bus."Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Tiger team [n.]A temporary group of "experts" assembled to convince management that everything is under control.
Suggested by Krystina S
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Time pig [n.]A useless project that will require countless hours. "I can't stomach another time pig vanity bid."
Suggested by Jonathon T.
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Time-poor [adj.]Possessing little free time (of course, this is according to the person using this expression).Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Timeframe [n.]A superfluous word whose sole purpose seems to be to add two extra syllables of hot air. "We expect to deliver in a July timeframe." In other words, it'll be ready in July.
Suggested by Ski.
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Tips and pearls [n.]Brief pieces of advice and wisdom. "We provide a broad-base consult to really capture those tips and pearls."Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Title sponsor [n.]A company that attaches its name to a building, event, or anything else that will take their dirty money.Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
TLA [n.]Three Letter Acronym. There's no time to say three whole words, even when complaining about overused acronyms.
Suggested by Michael S.
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Tokenism [adj.]Putting minority workers in visible roles in order to project an image of diversity.Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Tony Bagadonuts [n.]A bumbling man. "So I'm talking to the client and all of a sudden Tony Bagadonuts shows up and interrupts everything."
Suggested by Brad
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Took a bath [exp.]A really slick way of saying that a lot of money was lost. "We really took a bath after 9/11."Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Toolkit [n.]A collection of training materials. CLAIM: Comprehensive set of tools and strategies for dealing with any situation. REALITY: Three slide PowerPoint.
Suggested by Rob
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Touch base [v.]To get in contact with or update. "Call me in two weeks and we'll touch base about this again."Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Town hall [n.]A meeting held by senior management for all staff, usually followed by a carefully scripted question and answer period.
Suggested by Dave
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Transitioning [v.]An ugly verb meaning 'to undergo a transition.' "We're transitioning to a new payroll system next month."Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Travel dazzle [exp.]An attempt to impress the boss while on a business trip together.Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Tree killer [n.]Someone who insists on printing every email, document, and web-page they come across.Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Treeware [n.]Geek-speak for anything printed on paper.Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Trending over [v.]To increase past a projected or budgeted value, usually in reference to spent money."We're trending over plan on our T & E line."
Suggested by Aaron.
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Trial balloon [n.]Info sent out to observe the reaction of colleagues or more commonly, supervisors. "Float a trial balloon before you go and spend that money."
Suggested by John.
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Triangulate [v.]To involve a third person or party. "The contract looks good to me, but I'll have to triangulate with Gavin in Accounts before we can move forward."
Suggested by Michael P.
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Tribal knowledge [n.]Group wisdom gained over many years in a given industry. "I'm going to hit you with some hard won tribal knowledge."
Suggested by Erik
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Triple-dub [n.]The freshest way to start spelling out a website address. "Dude, you have to hit up triple-dub dot superpizzaboner dot info."
Suggested by Alli R.
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
True North [n.]The business direction that leads to success. "We've brought in some consultants to help steer us to True North."Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Trustafarian [n.]A co-worker, typically a young intern, who is from a wealthy background but dresses like a bohemian stoner.
Suggested by Luke K.
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
TTB [n.]Time to boxes. Elapsed meeting time before someone jumps up and begins drawing boxes on the whiteboard.
Suggested by Dennis
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Turd polishing [v.]1) Putting a positive spin on an unpleasant situation.
2) Efforts to make cosmetic improvements to something that is fundamentally flawed.
Suggested by Derrick and Pillson.
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Turkey farm [n.]A division used to store the incompetent or unfireable, safely isolated from actual customer interaction. Members may include eccentric IT gurus, union reps, and your boss's teenage daughter.
Suggested by Chuck P.
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Turkey trot [v.]Transferring a difficult or incompetent worker into another section of the company.Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Turn-key [adj.]Describes a system that can be immediately installed and activated, without significant configuration.Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Two-comma [adj.]Anything that costs over 1,000,000. "We just landed a two-comma contract this morning."Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter
Twobicle [n.]A cubicle built for two. "Having my own twobicle will always be the dream."
Suggested by Marty R.
Share this term on FacebookShare this term on Twitter


Have one to add? Click here to suggest a word.