Leverage Consulting-Speak Wisely

I love consulting. Maybe that’s because I’m not a consultant. Yet. But I’ve worked in the field so to speak and I just can’t get enough of the lingo, the management speak, the corporate diction; in fact, I had to utilise (fancy way of saying ‘use’) much of the terminology as part of my own recruitment consulting ‘tool-kit’ in order to leverage (which isn’t a verb) my relationships to fully realise business benefits, reducing costs and maximising revenue.

Perhaps this isn’t the best topic to kick start a site designed to help grads get into consulting. Then again, I think language is the best starting point since everything is defined in its terms. Also, with competition for graduate places so high these days many are looking for ways to stand out from the crowd – using fancy words is often a good trick. But there’s a fine line between setting yourself apart by showing your knowledge of the industry with some precise well inserted terms and blowing yourself to bits with a barrage of babble under pressure.

Try it yourself. (Courtesy of Guerilla Consulting)

From the table below, choose any word from the left-hand column, then add a word from the middle column plus any word from the final column. Ta da–instant consultant speak.

Not quite sure how effective it is but if you manage to come up with some interesting combinations, do share. To get you in the right frame of mind here are some sentences I’ve found floating aimlessly in search of meaning:

“Our holistic approach enables vertical connectivity between the field operations team and the quality assurance technicians to optimize consumer impact points.”

“can you please check the RFI to ensure the ROI meets the needs of the CXO and optimizes the outcomes for all stakeholders?”

For a fairly comprehensive dictionary visit Management Consulted, HOWEVER – don’t get suckered in too deep that you can’t claw yourself out of the ‘obscurity trap’.

In conclusion, if you’re going for an interview, just temper the vocab – you can get away with utilise and leverage and even synergies, probably consolidate and rationalize and business benefits as well as standard, you can even describe methodologies and tools and frameworks, but keep it simple and refrain from loading sentences with too many of these terms in one go as you’ll find that meaning soon takes a back seat and interviewers are left struggling to tick their boxes. Keep it clear and good luck.


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