Mysteries of the New World


The world mystifies me. Things are being said to me and presented to me that I no longer understand. Can anyone help me with these mighty questions:


1. When did the word “Lessons” get replaced with “Learnings”?


2. If I am improving the CX in my business what am I doing?


3. A woman who runs quite a substantial business recently said that she is trying to “uplift her touch points”.  Should I be excited?


4. People ring me to make a time for a “consult”. Is that a meeting or a new coffee?


5. One chap recently said to me that he has a long history as “a C level executive”. Was he suggesting he is a horrible person or was his office on Level C?


6. If I am involved in a “foundational implementation of an agreed strategy”, do I need to go out and buy a helmet?


7. Is a batter the tasty stuff around my piece of flake or a new cricket position?


8. Tik Tok used to be a noise that clocks made. What is it now?


Any advice on these things would be much appreciated.




The Puzzled One



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About Damian O'Donnell

I'm passionate about breathing. And you should always chase your passions. If I read one more thing about what defines leadership I think I'll go crazy. Go Cats.


  1. Spot on, Dips. Whatever happened to plain, simple English? Is crap like this a pathetic attempt to wield some kind of power or superiority over the rest of the masses, or simply an inability to be real at a personal level? or just what is the agenda? I’m standing at the open window shouting, ‘We’re mad as hell and we’re not going to take it anymore!’ (Or something like that.)

  2. What about “My lived experience”? As if there’s another kind. And it’s used as a sort of imprimatur for the speaker’s/writer’s point. Whereas I know some very long-lived and exhaustingly experienced people who know sweet FA.

  3. Phillip Dimitriadis says

    Ah, Dips.

    You really need an ‘idea shower’ to ‘synergise’ the ‘cascading information’ that seems to be knocking you down your ‘strategic staircase’. ‘Dig deeper’ , ‘drill down’ , ‘open the kimono’ and you’ll get the ‘helicopter view’ you’ve always wanted. Oh, and don’t forget to ‘think outside the box’ before you next ‘touch base’ with me.
    Hope you’ve enjoyed the ‘learnings’.

    ‘Best Regards’,
    Lord Bogan

  4. Phil – ha! Superb. But give me a minute to unpack it all. .

    ajc – lived experience. Hmmmm. Is that like a wet drink?

  5. Pamela Sherpa says

    It’s all complete rubbish and nonsense Dips. Ignore all the jargon and stick to reality. Keep calling a spade a spade.

  6. In your current ‘space’ you appear totes confused. I would literally say that it is awesome.

  7. Daryl Schramm says

    Having now retired I’m not subjected to that ‘wank’ behaviour anymore, except at the occasional dinner party attended by those still at work! Helicopter view is an elevated one. I always thought it was the ‘balcony’ view.

  8. Dips all the crap about it’s a journey ( journey were all going on together,I learned from my journey etc etc )

  9. Phillip Dimitriadis says

    Dips, you aren’t a ‘digital native’ , so it may be time for you to ‘upskill’ in order to retain your ‘currency’. Get your ‘ducks in a row’ and stop picking ‘low hanging fruit’ otherwise we’ll have to ‘move the goalposts’ on you.
    ‘Thanks in advance’

  10. Thanks people. I’ll take all this on-board going forward. I wonder how many unnecessary words are uttered and written every day?

  11. Chris Scott. “We will learn from this. Going forward.” The more things change the more things stay the same.

  12. I work in education but the language is increasingly that of commerce with talk of customers and business owners and minimum viable products. Neo-liberal toxins. I resist where possible.

  13. george smith says

    It started long ago in the theatre district. The word “workshop” used to bring up images of some 100 year old European bloke fixing a cuckoo clock. But now it means a bunch of trendies having a meeting, discussing the meaning of meaning at length.

    Your corporate mates are just as bad. The concept of service was such an anathema to your average company person in this country that they changed the noun “service”, such as a bank account or an electricity bill, to a “product”, such as a potato or a tyre…

  14. Lived Experience : FFS !!! What other experience is there?

    Try working in an industry where you hear that Jibberish . You can add on consumer, stake holder and similar nonsense.

    AJC, Mickey, PB; so true.

    It’s good to go back on the book shelf, then dig out Don Watson’s Weasel Words and the companion book.


  15. My pet hate: “unpack”, as in “Let’s unpack all the issues to do with Corona Virus, shall we?”
    La Trioli has an extremely annoying habit of using that term.

    Let me be clear to her and everyone else: “unpack” is something you do when you get home from holidays.

  16. ….and who plays ‘quarteback’, and forms a ‘scrimmage’, and is in ‘offence’ (conversely ‘defence’) etc., etc., in the AFL, AFLW? Yes, ‘batters’ in cricket….what the?

  17. Mark 'Swish' Schwerdt says

    Your position as the Almanac’s premier thought leader is intact Dips. Right in my wheelhouse, this one.

  18. Dips you are in our “middle years” don,t get me started. Many of my daily coffee chats turn into an embedded dialogue for a couple of hours. Ahh! the good old days when we had a cuppa tea but mind you the coffee is OK.
    Octogenerian Citrus B

  19. Liam Hauser says

    Many words have multiple meanings, but I find it crazy how some words and expressions get misused.
    The one that prickles me the most is verse/versing, e.g. “who are we versing in the footy this weekend?” Or even worse, “Australia will verse Sri Lanka in the World Cup.” Ughh!
    Another crazy one is someone saying they “could care less”, as if this is meant to be the opposite of the well-worn but relevant saying “couldn’t care less”.
    Lastly, when I attended a televised game of cricket in Brisbane late last year, they had one of those commercial TV initiatives where they focus on people in the crowd and want them to do something. At big stadiums, I’d seen “Kiss cam”. But this time, I was rather bemused to see “Floss cam”. And no, this had nothing to do with dental floss.

  20. Right on Dips. At the end of the day, and going forward, I’m in the groove.

  21. I’ll continue on my personal journey and try to be the best person I can be. That will include developing my brand going forward,through mindfulness and uplifting my touch points. Lots of learnings for me in all that.

    On another topic the Cats verse Gold Coast game was a disaster for Geelong. But the young blokes will take learnings out of the game. We look forward to versing Essendon this week.

    If any of this banter offended anyone I regret that.

  22. Solidarity, Dips.
    Management-ese has us all suffering.

    BBC radio 2 ran a series called “what makes us human?”
    Stephen Fry’s answer: language.

  23. Spot on ER

    “What do we lose when we concede the natural language? Accuracy, clarity, power, and memorability”

  24. James Wright says

    Dips, Hi James here from Diamond Valley Masters: whilst not completely part of your new world ‘verbage'( I think that means ‘words’?) can you explain to me why AFL umpires continue to scream the word ‘hold’ every time a player marks the ball. I actually counted it during the third quarter of Thursday St K versus Hawks pre-season game, and I counted it 37 times! Just don’t understand why they need to scream this out. I turned off the sound in the final quarter.

    Also, why do AFL players interviewed preface every response with ‘Look’… or ‘Absolutely’…?

    Or when did a team become a ‘playing group’?

  25. G’day James how are you? Still having a kick?

    Teams became a “playing group” about the same time as policemen became “members”. Strangely footy teams are no longer teams but every work place now has a team and a team leader?? And everyone in the team needs to be able to regurgitate at least 10 bland cliches as to what “leadership” is.

    The umpire chirping drives me nuts too.

  26. Mark Branagan says

    Dips you have obviously been operating too long in that space and we need to put our arms around you. I used to think that takeaways were for Friday night dinner, not a post-meeting heads-up for the time-poor. It is impordant that you know in this reality-TV infested world that we’ve ‘got your back’, rather than throwing you under the bus. MFB

  27. Hey Dips, the synergy generated by your mission statement is off the charts.

    Here is a little read as a damage control strategy:

  28. Some gold in there RK!!

  29. 3,285 retweets, 30,100 likes on this one in five days:

    jenny @fvrmvn

    my therapist: your habit of reflexively
    using corporate jargon outside of
    work is alienating to your family +
    friends and indicates a careerist
    attitude towards interpersonal
    me: thanks for flagging!

  30. Brilliant ER. Is 3285 retweets a good thing? How many kilojoules in a tweet?

  31. By the way I liderally love all the, like, comments here.

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