- management for the rest of us

Buzz word bingo – play it and win!

By Lyndsay Swinton

Playing buzz word bingo is a great way to cut the cr*p out of meetings. But before we get to the game itself, let’s look at the effects of poor business communication…

Have you ever considered harnessing the hot air generated in meetings as an alternative energy source?

If meetings are getting in the way of your real work, read on and discover how to recognise and deal with hot air generators.

Buzz Word Examples (or corporate BS)

  • “We have proactively addressed the issue with our competitor strategy”.
  • “Our newly formulated game plan will get us back in the ball park and drive results”
  • “The bar has been raised and we shall leverage our knowledge base to fast track the solution implementation”

Total, utter, nonsense! But in the meeting room, how many of us would be nodding knowledgeably, agreeing with the speaker? Enough is enough! Take back control and save time by using plain English.


How to play:

• Create a 5 x 5 grid and insert your favourite buzz words.
• Take this card to your next meeting and mark off squares as they come up
• You win when you’ve checked off 5 buzz word squares.
• Variations – check off 5 squares in a diagonal or horizontal or vertical line.

Here’s an example buzz word bingo template to get you started. Click here for a larger version.

Buzz word Bingo

Start your campaign for plain English by suggesting you play buzz word bingo with your colleagues. Okay, you may never actually play the game, but the mere suggestion* of playing it can be an opener for discussing how you talk to each other.

Next time you meet, say “Bingo!” for each buzz word you spot. Over time, meetings will speed up as you build the reputation for being straight talking, and people spot their own BS before it happens.

So now you know, give it a go!

*Warning - if your colleagues have had a collective sense of humour bypass, play virtual buzz word bingo instead (that is, in your own head). It’ll encourage you to challenge hot air generators and spot those who don't know what they're talking about. ;-)

By Lyndsay Swinton
Owner, Management for the Rest of Us

Download 'Buzz Word Bingo' in pdf format

Citation Information: Swinton, Lyndsay. "Buzz word bingo - play it and win!." 7 January 2007. < >.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Choose meeting ice breakers wisely!
Well chosen meeting ice breakers bond teams and ease people through the discomfort of getting to know others better. However, a badly chosen ice breaker can cause more discomfort than it cures.

Icebreaker games for small groups
The right icebreaker games make all the difference to meetings, training, your party and many other activities.

Ice breaker games for large groups
5 fun ice breaker games for large group activities.

copyright @