How to hit the ski slopes – and sharpen up your business-speak

How to hit the ski slopes - and sharpen up your business-speakWith so many business people these days referring to “going off piste” when they mean “do something a bit out of the ordinary” … perhaps a rebirth of the “thinking outside the box” cliché? … I thought I should be pro-active and create more business jargon from the snowy jargon of ski slopes in the Alps, Rockies, etc.

Needless to say these are just for starters: please feel free to create more to share…

Après ski: informal social networking that means you still talk business but can get drunk at the same time and insert your business card down someone’s cleavage / pants or one of their incredibly furry boots.

Avalanche: new way of saying something has “gone viral,” only this time someone gets trampled physically and suffocated in the rush.

Black run: a daring way forward for a business venture that requires great skill, courage and the proponents to wear black – or more appropriately brown – pants/trousers.

Boarders: employees who clutter up the workspace with their brash boldness and poor performance due to their having both feet tied together.

Cable car: solid, safe business enterprise that carries a lot of weight but when it falls, boy does it make a big bang and cause a lot of damage.

Chair lift: a smaller enterprise – typically an SME – that seldom fails but can freeze the b*lls off its key people if it gets stuck for a while.

Cross country: a slower, steadier business enterprise which requires less athletic thinking but an awful lot more patience and endurance.

Downhill: the way your business can move at very high speed if you don’t know what you’re doing, and can be especially disastrous if you crash through the barriers at the bottom.

Frostbite: what you get when your angel investors decide that you’re not performing quite to schedule and freeze you out.

Herringbone: a laborious, time-consuming way to climb up through the red tape of starting a business that takes so long you risk beginning to smell like a rotten fish.

Mogul: a nasty little hump in your field which probably is part of the empire owned by an humungous competitor who easily can make you fall flat on your face.

Parallel turn: what clients do when they suspect your competitor might offer a better deal. Happily these are more difficult to achieve than most people think and often result in the skier falling flat on his/her backside.

How to hit the ski slopes - and sharpen up your business-speakPiste: the condition of many business people on a Friday evening after a few therapeutic snifters in the offices’ local bar.

Piste basher: a sneaky staffer who observes clients on a Friday night (see above) and photographs them surreptitiously in compromising circumstances, to encourage faster payments of your bills.

Poubelling: originally meant as sliding down a hillside or snowy road sitting on a large (French Alpine) garbage bag, in the business context now means taking a ridiculously chancy risk which could win you the race or – alternatively – give you the biggest pain in the ass you’ve experienced in several years.

Powder snow: a business territory that is extremely attractive to the experts but can drop beginners into deep, deep, trouble.

Red run: a beginner’s way to market that could be the start of something much bigger and better, but is so safe and predictable that it’s likely to sink without trace.

Schuss: the straightest, fastest line from A to B … great if you can pull it off but by George you’ll come a cropper if you get it wrong.

How to hit the ski slopes - and sharpen up your business-speakSlalom: a tricky approach to business which involves considerably chicanery, but can triumph provided that you don’t work outside the limits set by the powers-that-be.

Snow blindness: a condition you may acquire if you spend too much time dreaming of the future without dealing with the realities and getting on with the hard work.

White out: utter oblivion to a business storm around you with the resultant likelihood
of falling flat on your face and freezing to death.

Come on now … let’s have some more!

Now: get hip with your jargon …

“Banana Skin Words and how not to slip on them”…over 1,500 spelling and grammar tips to perfect your written English

“English to English: the A to Z of British-American translations”…more than 2,000 business and social terms from the USA, the UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand

“The English Language Joke book”…hundreds of laughs about this crazy language of ours

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Thoughts

  1. Love this particularly as I love going off piste…and I do think being a maverick and following your own way is a good thing too…thanks Suzan x

  2. Izabella Chaves says:

    Love it!…. and swiftly moving on (as one tries suitably clad in a constricting ski attire) to:
    Stem Christies – aka parallel turns – an activity of deriving income from multiple streams.

    BTW: why stem Christie, not Kristie, since it was named after Kristiania?

  3. Eeeeek! Let me avoid “downhill” at all costs!

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