Friday, June 22, 2012

great list of Business Cliches

In business world people use cliche quite often. Here is list I put together by searching it from various sites.:


1. It’s a paradigm shift = I don’t know what’s going on in our business. But we’re not making as much money as we used to.
2. We’re data-driven = We try not to make decisions by the seat of our pants. When possible, we try to base them in facts.
3. We need to wrap our heads around this = Gosh, I never thought of that. We need to discuss that….
4. It’s a win-win = Hey, we both get something out of this (even though I’m really trying to get the best from you)
5. ROI [used in any sentence] = Look at me, I’m very financially-minded, even if I never took any finance classes in school
6. Let’s blue sky this/let’s ballpark this = Let’s shoot around a bunch of ideas since we have no clue what to do
7. I’m a bit of a visionary = I’m a bit of an egomaniac and narcissist
8. I’m a team player/we only hire team players = I hope everyone on the team thinks this is a meritocracy, even though I’m the dictator in charge
9. Let’s circle back to that/Let’s put that in the parking lot/let’s touch base on that later/let’s take this off-line = Shut up and let’s go back to what I was talking about
10. We think outside the box here/color outside the lines = We wouldn’t know about how to do something innovative if it came up to us and bit us in the behind
11. I/we/you don’t have the bandwidth = Since we cut 60% of our headcount, we’re all doing the job of 3 people, so we’re all burned out
12. This is where the rubber meets the road = Don’t screw up
13. Net net/the net of it is/when you net it out = I never studied finance or accounting but I sound like someone who can make money if I keep talking about another word for profit
14. We’ll go back and sharpen our pencils = We’ll go back and offer you the same for 20% less in hopes you’ll buy it before the end of the quarter
15.  It’s like the book “Crossing the Chasm”/”Blue Ocean”/”Good To Great” / “Tipping Point” / “Outliers” = I’ve never read any of these books but I sound literate if I quote from them. And, besides, you cretins probably never read them either to call me out on it
16. Let’s right-size it = Let’s whack/fire a bunch of people
17. It’s next-gen/turn-key/plug-and-play = I want it to sound so technical that you’ll just buy it without asking me any questions
18. We need to manage the optics of this = How can we lie about this in a way people will believe?
19. This is creative destruction = I’ve never read Joseph Schumpeter but our core business is getting killed so it’s your responsibility to come up with a new product the market will buy
20. We don’t have enough boots on the ground = I don’t want to be fired for this disastrous product/country launch, so I’m going to sound tough referring to the military and say I don’t have enough resources
21. Deal with it = Tough cookies
22. By way of housekeeping = This makes the boring stuff I’m about to say sound more official
23. That’s the $64,000 question [sometimes, due to inflation, people will denominate this cliche in millions or billions of dollars] = I don’t know either
24. Let’s square the circle = I’m someone who can unify two team members’ views and sound important
25. It’s our cash cow/protect/milk the cash cow = If that business goes south, we’re all out of a job
26. It’s about synergies/1 + 1 = 3 = I don’t get the math either, but it sounds like more and more is better, right?
27. Who’s going to step up to the plate? = One of you is going to do this and it’s not going to be me
28. We’re eating our own dog food = It sounds gross but we seem like honest folks if we do this.
29. We need to monetize/strategize/analyze/incentivize = When in doubt, stick “-ize” on the end of a word and say we’ve got to do this and 9 out of 10 times, it will sound action-oriented.
30. We did a Five Forces/SWOT analysis/Value Chain analysis = We didn’t really do any of that, but none of you probably even remember Michael Porter, so what the heck
31. It was a perfect storm = We really screwed up but we’re going to blame a bunch of factors that are out of our hands (especially weather)
32. At the end of the day…. = OK, enough talking back and forth, we’re going to do what I want to do
33. Who’s got the ‘R’? [i.e., responsibility to do what we just spent 20 minutes talking about aimlessly] = If I ask the question, it won’t be assigned to me
34. Let’s put lipstick on this pig = plug your nose
35. I’m putting a stake in the ground here… = I’m a leader, simply because I’m using this cliche
36. We’re customer-focused/proactive/results-oriented = That can’t be bad, right?  This is motherhood and apple pie stuff
37. Our visibility into the quarter is a little fuzzy = Sales just fell off a cliff
38. That’s not our core competency/we’re sticking to our knitting = We’re just glad we’re making money in one business, because we’d have no clue how to get into any other business
39. Well, we’re facing some headwinds there = You put your finger on the area we’re panicking over
40. It’s a one-off = Do whatever they want to close the sale
41. Incent it = That’s not a verb but I just made it into one because I’m a man/woman of action
42. I’m an agent of change = This makes it sound like I know how to handle the chaos that our business is constantly going through
43. We’ve got to do a little more due diligence there = Don’t have a clue but does that legal term make me sound detail-oriented?
44. Don’t leave money on the table = Be as greedy with them as possible
45. We take a “ready, fire, aim” approach here = We totally operate on a seat-of-the-pants basis
46. Hope is not a strategy = I don’t have a strategy, but this makes it sound like I’m above people who also don’t have a strategy
47. We have to tear down the silos internally = Our organizational structure is such a mess that I’m going to be under-mined by other departments at every turn
48. I don’t think it will move the needle = This won’t get my boss excited
49. Good to put a face to the name = I’d really rather talk to that person behind you
50. Let’s take the 30,000 foot view… = I like to think I see the big picture
51. It’s the old 80-20 rule = I really have no idea what the rule was, but I just want to focus on the things that will make us successful
52. We need to manage expectations = Get ready to start sucking up to people
53. It’s not actionable enough/what’s the deliverable? = You guys do the work on refining the idea. I’m too tired.
54. My 2 cents is… = This opinion is worth a heck of a lot more than 2 cents
55. I’m going to sound like a broken record here… = I want to clearly point out to you idiots that I’ve made this point several times before
56. We’ve got too many chiefs and not enough Indians = I want to be the Chief
57. Going forward = Don’t screw up like this again
58. My people know I’ve got an open door policy = I’ve told my direct reports to come to me if they have a problem, so why should I feel bad if they complain I’m too busy to talk to them?
59. It’s gone viral = Someone sent a tweet about this
60. I know you’ve been burning the candle on both ends = Get ready to do some more
61. It’s scalable = We can sell a lot of it in theory
62. It’s best-of-breed = We hired a market research firm to say that
63. We’re all about value-add = Unlike our competitors who seek to add no value
64. What’s our go-to-market? = Has anyone planned this out, because I’ve been too busy?
65. I’m drinking from a fire hose right now = I want a little sympathy over here, because I’m tired of carrying this company on my back
66. We’re getting some push back = They’re not buying it
67. We need to do a level-set = I’ve never been inside a Home Depot, but this phrase makes me sound handy
68. It’s basic blocking and tackling = How could you screw this up? I also played high school football and those were the best days of my life.
69. Let’s put our game faces on = Get serious, guys
70. We’ve got it covered from soup to nuts = I have no idea what that means, but don’t you dare question my prep work on it
71. We don’t want to get thrown under the bus = So let’s throw someone else first
72. But to close the loop on this… = Always the more theoretical Business Development/Strategy guys who say this, so they can sound thorough
73.  What are “next steps”? = Did anyone take notes during the last 90 minutes of this meeting?
74. This is low-hanging fruit = Get this done quickly
75. We need a few quick wins = We’ve got to trick people into thinking we know what we’re doing by some successes we can point to and claim as ours
76. It’s a [Insert Company Name] killer = Did I get your attention yet with the Freddy Kreuger imagery associated with the company who’s currently eating our lunch?
77. I want to address the elephant in the room = I know you think I’m trying to cover up/gloss over something, so I might as well talk about it
78. This is the next big thing/new thing = Some of our 20-somethings have told me this is really cool
79. This time it’s different because… = Don’t wait for the explanation… simply run for the hills.
80. What are the best practices on this? = How can I cover my behind that we’re just doing stuff the way other good people have supposedly done this?
81. This is our deliverable = I know this sounds like something that comes in a body bag, but it makes our PowerPoint sound tougher than it actually is
82. We’ll loop you in when we need to = You’re not that important to know about all the details on this
83. We want this to move up and to the right = I failed high school algebra but someone said this means we’ll be making a lot of money if this happens
84. We’re going through a re-org = No one knows what the heck is going on at the moment
85. We’ve got to increase our mind-share with the customer = I think I would have been happier as a doctor doing lobotomies than in marketing as a career path
86. I don’t think you’re comparing apples to apples = Let me tell you how you should really think about this issue

87. Let’s peel back the onion on this = I want to sound thorough so this is a better way of telling you that than simply clearing my throat
88. You phoned it in = I was too busy checking my email during your presentation that I didn’t listen
89. I want you to run with this = I just threw you into the deep end of the pool and you’re on your own to figure it out

Friday, June 15, 2012

Latest slang words I was not aware of

Yolo- one my friend’s younger brother put this in the tweet. Well, what the heck *YOLO” means?
I hit it in google, YOLO: You Only Live Once!  Then I realized that there are so many other such newly created slang words that teenager are using. I decided to find the latest 2012 slang words used by teen and familiarized myself so that I do not feel left behind when I see/hear these words on the internet or conversation.

Below is the list of some which I was not aware of earlier:

1.       Yolo: you only live once- self-explanatory and taken from Drake track the Motto.
2.       Swag: style/flavour/cool: still a UK / US favorite and staying strong for this year .I have Swag for days.
3.        Leggoo (Nothing to do with bricks, abbreviation of let’s go). Are you ready to hit the club tonight? Leggoo.
4.       Noob: A noob refers to someone who doesn't have the basic knowledge when it comes to pop culture, tech terms or just generally what seems to be "in" that week. (And don't worry, after you read our guide, you will no longer be a noob when it comes to popular words among teens).
5.       POS- Now kids aren't going around saying "POS" out loud -- nor would they say LOL (laugh out loud), WTF (what the f--k), BRB (be right back) or SMH (shaking my head) --but this one is just for texting and chatting. If you ever happen to look over your son or daughter's shoulder while they are on instant message sites or Facebook and you see "POS," it refers to: parents over shoulder
6.       SICK: Sick doesn't refer to being ill or literally sick. It usually refers to something that was awesome, cool or surprising.
7.       Gassed ( Excited/over the top) Ahhh Rick Ross gets me so gassed.
8.       Cray or Cray Cray ( Taken from Jay-Z + Kanye track N**gs in paris meaning crazy) #Thats Cray Cray.
9.       Jock: one who’s concerned with being macho or very masculine in appearance or manner; He lifts weights every day and often doesn’t wear a shirt. That way, the girls stand around him, admiring his chest muscles. He’s the most popular jock on campus.
10.   space cadet: someone who appears to be out of touch with reality; Instead of paying attention, that teen is just staring out the window. Perhaps something is bothering him. Or maybe he’s just a space cadet.
11.   veg out: stop working and take it easy; He’d been working hard. So today, he decided to veg out at home.
12.   wired: very stimulated or excited, as from a stimulant; I drank too many cups of coffee this morning. As a result, I’m really wired.
13.   Totes – totally (like, totally great or totally awful)
14.   Fo shiz – for sure
15.   My dizzle – my dear (we think?!)
16.   Tool- Wonderful- awesome
17.   "H"- hardcore- the lyrics are pretty "H".
18.   Requestion: Combination of question and request
19.   'Sup: Abbreviation for "What's up?"
20.   Bounce: To leave in a hurry

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

My Decision on Business School (MBA)- Santa Clara, Leavey School of business

This post is supposed to be my private notes. However, I thought this post would help many more out there who are deciding between colleges. The decision of choosing the college is a mix of quantitative, qualitative, personal and emotional analysis. One might get so many conflicting opinions and finally one may be totally confused about the DECISION.

I finally decided to take the admission in the Santa Clara University for the various reasons (commute from office/home, total cost of the program…see more criteria below) Everyone have their own priorities and expectations. Depending on what your goals are, the decision parameters and the end result might differ. However, it is worthwhile to consider all the options available and take a careful decision on the MBA program that’s going to get added for rest of your life.

Following were my considerations when I started to prepare for the GMAT-
  • Reputation of the School
    • Is this school recognized out side Bay Area ?
    • Is this school recognized out side California ?
    • Is this school recognized out side USA ?
  • Total Cost of the Program
    • Is it affordable? Is it Worth ?
  • Campus
    • Is it necessary to be in Campus ?
    • What do you want to do with Campus ?
    • Do you have much time to hand around in Campus ?
  • Alumni
    • Do you have powerful Alumni ?
    • Is Alumni active ?
    • Can you benefit from Alumni ?
  • Industry Connection
    • Does the school provide good exposure ?
    • Can you get connections from School ?
    • Do you get access to best people from Industry ?
  • Diversity of Students
    • Do you want same mind set of people or different ?
    • Do you want to stick to same field of profession even after MBA ?
    • Do you respect the opinion of a person in other profession ?
  • Faculty
    • Do you have a guest faculty or a full-time faculty ?
    • Do you get the professors from undergraduate program ?
    • Are they well qualified and well experienced in Industry.
Once I had the criteria, it was easy for me to decide. I definitely wanted to join something that i felt “GOOD” and “CONVENIENT”. Following is my general impression on the application process for each University.

Golden Gate University : Had to send the GMAT score, TOEFL waiver essay, 2 Recommendations, 1 Application Essay/Statement of Purpose, Transcripts directly from University and the application fee. It was a very smooth process and i had no issues with the communication or the way they handled the application. They offer an MBA with in 21 months and the tuition fee is relatively less in Golden Gate. I had a personal interview with the director of the program where we discussed my experience, why i want to do my MBA and my future aspirations. All in all, it was a nice experience.

UC Berkley : This needed GMAT score, waived TOEFL, 2 recommendations, 2 long-essays, 3 short-essays, 1 personal interview and the Transcripts sent to them directly once you get admitted. The cost of the program is quite high though if you compare it with SCU of GGU. I was called up the personal interview and it was not that easy.
My overall impression was great and very satisfied with the way they answer the questions/queries about the program.

Santa Clara University : SCU needs GMAT score, waived the TOEFL, 2 paper based recommendations, 2 application essays and the Transcripts sent to them directly. I loved the campus and the class rooms (i took guest student class) and the professors looked very knowledgeable. Students that i talked to gave a very good impression of the program. This program has mostly students from the IT/Software industry. Probably people looking for diversity may not find this as a best choice.
My overall impression was that this is a great school and i had a smooth communication. The admission team is nice and professional.
I consider deciding an MBA program is like decision of marriage. One needs to be very careful with personal expectation and the spouse’s. If your mess up the expectations, you screw up the complete relationship. It takes a lot of effort to analyze and decide what each one of us wants.
My decision is my decision. I want any readers to take my opinions with a grain of salt and use your own discretion. My situation may not be your situation.

how to detect fake statistics

This Spring Quarter I took statistics class in my MBA. The course was mostly about how to use statistics in business application. In the start of the course I was not sure what exactly I will get from it (as it was a mandatory course so I had no choice)- but as I started to dig more in to it- I found that statistics is a very powerful tool that you use throughout your life if you are associated with  business management or business development or politics.

Here is some of the thing I learned on how to spot a fake statistics presented to you on TV, newspaper or journal.

1. Find out who paid for the survey
Take a close look at who paid for the survey. If you read a statistic stating 90% of people lost 20 pounds in a month on a certain “miracle” diet, look at who paid for that survey. If it was the company who owns that “miracle” product, then it’s likely you have what’s called a self-selection study. In a self-selection study, someone stands to gain financially from the results of a trial or survey. You may have seen those soda ads where “90% of people prefer the taste of product X.” But if the manufacturer of product X paid for that survey, you probably can’t trust the results.

2. Look in to sample size- is sample size too small or limited?
Make sure the sample size isn’t too limited in scope. It’s unlikely you can make generalizations about student achievement in the U.S. by studying a single inner city school in Sunnyvale.

3. Look for faulty assumption
For example, you might read a statistic that states unemployment causes an increase in corn production because corn products (like high fructose corn syrup) are cheap and therefore people are more likely to buy cheap foods when unemployed. But there may be many other factors causing an increase in production including an increase in government subsidies for corn. Just because one factor is seemingly connected to another (correlation), that doesn’t necessarily imply causation (that one caused the other).

4. Who was surveyed?
Take a look at if the statistics came from a voluntary survey. A voluntary response sample is a sample where the participants can choose to be included in the sample or not

5.  Beware of precise number or percentage.
If a national survey reports that 3,150,023 households in the U.S. are dog owners, you might be inclined to believe that exact figure. However, it’s highly unlikely (and almost impossible) that anyone would have seriously surveyed all of the households in the U.S. It’s much more likely they surveyed a sample and that 3,150,023 is an estimate and should have been reported as 3 million to avoid being misleading.

Friday, June 08, 2012

what to do if you just landed on H4 Visa.

"Was working in home country, was making decent money, and got married to a person on H1B. Being H4, I can't work- staring at the 4 walls whole day- gets frustrated" - Does this profile familiar to you?

If yes, then here is some of the tips/checklist based on my experience:

 #1. Get your driving license as soon as you can. If are new in US (and in CA where public transport is horrible) and does not drive, your life could be very difficult if you are an outdoor person.

#2. Make you first home trip back soon- After first couple of months you will start feeling home sick, missing your parents, siblings, old friends. Make your first home trip within a year. One of friend's wife did not visit her parents for 2 years after coming here and she started to feel depressed. Finally her Doctor suggested her to go and visit the parents immediately. She was completely normal after her India trip.

# 3. Plan to go for MS/MBA- Trust me this is best path if you want to work here. I know, the cost of study is very high, and you may argue that you already have an MS from India, why do it again..Well I understand, but my suggestion is -go for it. You can recover the money you spent on MS/MBA within first two year. Moreover, you can legally work 18 hours a week during study, which is much better than nothing

#4. Start Workout/playing something (or control your eating habits) - otherwise your weight may sky rocket without you noticing it. Better control yourself on eating the right foods at right quantities. Otherwise you would have to waste months in getting back to shape!

#5. Go for some volunteer work (if you do not want to study)- best place is you can work in library and study (if you like studying). cultivate a hobby and make new friends.

#6. Find new people who have same interest as you – search groups and nearby activities on or Facebook..etc.  Join any class of your class, tango class…

#7. Embrace change. Once you know it always happens, and once you practice finding the things to be grateful for in each change, then the changes will gradually start to always be on your side. When you wake up, start to look forward to the stunning that will happen in your life today.

Friday, June 01, 2012

Make your focus and Ignore list

There are so much information flowing around and its very very easy to get distracted. So I am in process of making the below two list and will try to stick to them.

List 1: Your Focus List (the road ahead) What are you trying to achieve? What makes you happy? What's important to you? Design your time around those things. Because time is your one limited resource and no matter how hard you try you can't work 25/8.

List 2: Your Ignore List (the distractions)
To succeed in using your time wisely, you have to ask the equally important but often avoided complementary questions: what are you willing not to achieve? What doesn't make you happy? What's not important to you? What gets in the way?