Business Jargon vs Plain English


Businesses are often guilty of using overly-formal language and even inventing terms such as 'going forward' which means 'from now on' or 'in the future' (with a continuous and progressive movement). This is called 'jargon'.
Often (but not always), there are simpler alternatives. Take 'prior to' which is a very formal synonym of 'before'.
So let's look at some of these terms in context and practise using simpler, more natural-sounding alternatives.

1. Look at the internal memo (from ‘memorandum’, which means ‘message’) below, and see how many words or expressions you can find which seem overly formal.

Jargon Global Plc

Memorandum to: All personnel

From: Human Resources Dept.

Subject: Leave requests for next fiscal period

In the course of planning the next fiscal period, it has come to our attention that a large number of personnel have solicited leave over the coming May bank holiday. As a consequence of this and to facilitate the viable functioning of all departments, such requests pertaining to leave will be temporarily discontinued while we effect modifications to department timetables. All requests for leave therefore, must be re-submitted not before 22nd March and prior to the close of trade on 26th March. As a consequence of this disruption, and in the event of any doubts you may have concerning these changes, we invite any input that would be advantageous to a viable resolution for all personnel not later than this Friday 7th February.

Click “Start” to reload.

Click “Start” to reload.