The Local Government Association (LGA) recently published a list of 200 words or phrases that it feels its members should avoid using. They are concerned that an increasing level of jargon has made its way into local government documentation and publications, leading to confusion and a lack of understanding.
Some of the words and phrases seem unnecessarily complicated, others seem fairly straightforward if used in an internal professional rather than public communication context. What really does stand out is the number of different euphemisms the LGA has identified for people working together. More than 10% of the identified words and phrases mean, in some sense, working together. Here’s a few:
Across-the-piece, Cohesive communities, Cohesiveness, Collaboration, Coterminosity, Coterminous, Cross-cutting, Cross-fertilisation, Holistic, Holistic governance, Interdepartmental, Joined up, Joint working, Multi-agency, Multidisciplinary, Partnership working, Partnerships, Pooled budgets, Pooled resources, Pooled risk, Shared priority
It seems that when people have real difficulty working together they can spend a lot of time creating a ‘taxonomy’ for working together. We help people to become more effective teams who go on not only to achieve more, but enjoy their work and reduce the pressure they feel.