A Memorial for Buzzwords: Four Score and Seven Years from Today

Lincoln Memorial“Fourscore and seven years ago, our stakeholders brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty and dedicated to the value proposition that all men are created on a net-net basis. Now we are operating in the space of a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can add value while moving forward. We are met on a great battlefield of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might experience a game changer. It altogether is what it is…”

Following my previous article on corporate buzzwords, I took the liberty to insert some of the most common buzzwords of corporate America into Abraham Lincoln’s famous address. It’s probably a good thing I didn’t incorporate the entire thing because some readers may have fallen asleep.

President Lincoln’s famous Gettysburg address did not fall on deaf ears. Though it was only around 2 minutes long, not a single one of his words were meaningless and each carried weight. As a result, his words have been recorded down in history. Interestingly enough, the Secretary of State at the time, Edward Everett, spoke before President Lincoln for about two hours. Yet, no one remembers Edward Everett.

Another reason why Lincoln’s address is so famous was because it addressed a specific issue and he did so in a specific way, without mincing words. When we can practice and become effective at replacing the corporate buzzwords with simpler words using real language, more people will care about what we have to say. Instead of creating a memorial with a filter that is always going over the past, we will spark an energy that will look to the future.

Where do you want to see your company seven years from now?

For more ideas on how to bring about effectual positive change in your life and workplace, download a free chapter to my new book, Improv is No Joke. I am also glad to be an inspiring speaker at your next event!