Wednesday, 27 March 2013

Ugly business neologisms of the day #1: "Onboarding"

Welcome, dear reader, to the first in a new series.

One of the English language's great strengths is it's adaptability, the sense that it is constantly shifting and evolving, borrowing words from other languages, fusing words, their meanings altered as they are adopted by new subgroups of speakers. Most of the time this is evidence of the vitality of the language, something celebrated by writers from Shakespeare to Joyce to Walcott. 

And then there's the world of business, where words and phrases are created in order to lend an air of gravitas to concepts that would be easily-graspable by your average six-year-old. Ladies and gentlemen, without further ado, I give you...

Ugly business neologism #1: Onboarding
Onboarding, also known as organizational socialization, refers to the mechanism through which new employees acquire the necessary knowledge, skills, and behaviours to become effective organizational members and insiders. Tactics used in this process include formal meetings, lectures, videos, printed materials, or computer-based orientations to introduce newcomers to their new jobs and organizations.
Example usage: "He spent a week with us at corporate so we could quickly onboard him into the company culture."

Just no.

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