I'll never forget the first time I heard someone say, "We need to drill down to the granular level to find that information." As an English major who became a marketer, I was fascinated by the image of drilling into a pile of data, like a team of oilmen on an ocean rig, to find answers. The metaphor intrigued me.
But then, as the morning meeting progressed, I heard the words used maybe five more times. By the end of the day, I'd heard "drilling down" used probably ten more times. And, by the end of the week, I had heard it so much I was ready to scream the next time I heard anyone say they were going to drill down for anything! The phrase had changed from a fresh image into a stale cliche, an old, moldy donut of language left for the rats to pick over.
Unfortunately, especially in the business world, occasionally some poetic soul invents a new way of comparing things and the copycats rush to use it... over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over....well, you get the point.
That thought led me to wonder what words or phases made you want to scream last year because they had become trite, worn out, overused, hackneyed and cliched buzz. If nothing comes immediately to your mind, I'll nominate a couple for your consideration: "death panel", "tweet", "google", "rogue", "ping", "win-win", "touch base", "Web 2.0", "social media marketing", and "whatever."
I know that "google" has become a verb and "tweet" is rapidly approaching that status, but, still.... Anyway, let me know what language is bothering you! Do some drilling down! It's your deliverable for the week! It will produce a win-win for all of us!