Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Making something out of a thing

Having been married for 9 months now, I think I have settled well into life as a husband. I have mastered saying “yes dear” whilst not actually listening to what beloved is telling me and I don’t leave the toilet seat up. Ever.

However, I’ve yet to fully master the language of woman. She phoned me up in a blind panic the other day and said she had forgotten to put the things in the freezer and asked if I could do it. When I asked her to elaborate on what this thing might be, I was informed they were the things she bought that morning. After more detective work, I eventually managed to get her to say “ice cream”. Ah, no problem. Despite pointing out she had purchased them some 5 hours earlier and they would almost certainly be beyond saving now, I then asked where these mystical ice creams were. She then helpfully informed me they were in the thing in front of the thing.

To cut a long and very boring story short, the thing she was referring to was a bag and the thing they were in front of was the freezer. The simple fact is that if this conversation had been between her and, say, my mum, they would have completely understood each other. Seriously, the conversation would have gone “I didn’t put the things in the thing can you get the things out of the thing and put them in the thing?” And my mum would have answered “Oh my god the ice cream! I’ll take them out of the bag and put them in the freezer now, dear.”

This is a problem often experienced in the business world. People who work in the same environment understand the jargon and will talk to their colleagues in that very bizarre language. What they don’t realise is the customers they are selling to don’t understand a word they are saying. Sometimes people use this jargon to deliberately confuse customers with bollocks and make themselves sound cleverer than they are.

To cut another long and very boring story short, we don’t do this at Datapartners. We like to make things as clear and simple as possible. Business is good; bollocks is bad.