Avaya put out an amusing video (embedded below) that pokes fun at all the buzzwords we use around the office (“disruptor,” “hit the ground running,” “seamless”). It’s embarrassing, since we all use these buzzwords. Including, unfortunately, Avaya.
Here’s an excerpt of what it says on Avaya’s “Company Overview” page (I’ve highlighted the buzzwords and meaningless claims in bold italic):
Avaya is a recognized innovator and leading global provider of solutions for customer and team engagement. The company provides technologies for unified communications and collaboration, contact center and customer experience management, and networking, along with related services to large enterprises, midmarket companies, small businesses and government organizations around the world. Avaya Engagement Solutions bring people together with the right information at the right time in the right context, helping to enable a higher level of engagement between customers, teams, employees and partners to improve efficiency and quickly address critical business challenges. Designed to be highly scalable, reliable, secure and flexible, these solutions help reduce costs and simplify management while providing a platform for next-generation engagement and collaboration.
This might have been good until a committee got ahold of it. The proliferation of “and” and “while” reflects a desire to be as inclusive as possible. That’s also what made it meaningless. “Engagement” makes me mad: it’s the perfect example of a buzzword that appears to mean something but has no actual definition. Whoever picked “Engage” and put it at the center of Avaya’s branding made a terrible mistake.
Here’s a short version of this purpose statement might actually inspire both workers and customers:
Avaya makes the world’s best office communications systems. We get people the right communication at the right moment in the right context, which makes them more productive.
The video promotes Ava, “Avaya’s Business Engagement Expert & Technology Translator.” Ava is a great idea: a resource for decoding and eliminating buzzwords. “Ava is passionate about helping people communicate more effectively in the workplace and is an advocate for any smart technology or best practice that enables maximum business engagement.” You had me until that last bit about the engagement.
According to AdWeek, 300 Avaya employees told the agency FleischmanHillard which buzzwords made them nuts, and that’s how the company made the video. I wonder if they had to remove “Engage” from the list.