How effective is your business writing?

5 buzzwords to avoid in business writing


Let’s face it, we’ve all been guilty of throwing a business buzzword into a conversation because we think it makes us sounds clever.

Have you caught yourself convincing a colleague about benefits of ‘synergy’ or attempting to impress your boss with your knowledge of ‘optimisation’? Unfortunately, relying on these ‘tried and true’ buzzwords can seriously weaken your persuasive messaging and make your point sound unoriginal and thin.

It’s time to ‘bite the bullet’, ‘think outside of the box’ and take a ‘game-changing’ approach to corporate talk. Here are five popular buzzwords you should know but never use in your business writing.


What are you actually trying to say when using the word ‘synergy’? While you may think this word is a clever way of talking about how two or more things work together, you could potentially be losing the ‘synergy’ between you and your audience.

Instead, try to use the same language you would when having a conversation and replacing this overused buzzword with a term like collaboration or cooperation.


If something is genuinely ‘game-changing’, then it is likely to be innovative and original – unlike this buzzword. When describing a real ‘game-changing’ idea, be straightforward. Tell your audience how the concept could change the game, rather than just making the promise that it will!

Push the envelope

Unless you are actually discussing what’s happening in the mail room, avoid this phrase whenever possible. Tired phrases such as this show just how unwilling you are to ‘push the envelope’ yourself.


A number of international firms have picked up this phrase to describe products identified as the top of its type. However, it may be time to put ‘best-in-class’ to bed. Describing your products with a term traditionally used in schools is unflattering and unoriginal.

Moving forward

Unless speaking to somebody with the ability to time-travel (unlikely), your audience will be ‘moving forward’ with their project whether you like it or not. This term is redundant and unnecessary in almost every situation.

‘Moving forward’ in your pursuit of effective business writing, use honest and meaningful language instead of these tired buzzwords – you may find your products are more memorable when described using fresh and unique language!

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