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There's a lot to be said for simplicity.

Thanks for the comment, Drew. Agreed. Although I am ever mindful of the good advice offered by my Compensation Cafe colleage Dan Walter, and looking out for when KISS (Keep it Simple Stupid) becomes WISH (When is Simple Harmful).


Still, I like the idea of forcing focus and purpose...

Personally find most gobbledy-gook to be weasel-wordy lawyerly bureaucratic cant found most commonly in public institutions rather than in corporations.... unless the statements have been vetted by counsel well indoctrinated in those arts of arcane articulation by over-exposure to those specific toxic sources. Lawyers speak with tongues of lead and can easily obscure the clearest statement.

Most here are too young to remember the PR campaign in TWSJ by the CEO of General Dynamics (I think it was) featuring a series of below-business-card-sized short pithy memorable slogans presented on post-it notes published in the center of an otherwise blank page. It inspired my Brennan's Laws.

What gets measured, gets done is an old cliche - but true.

Picking the right things to measure, however, is really, really, hard. When the wrong things are measured, the result is mission failure because too much important stuff has been ignored.

Very interesting post - I just stumbled onto your blog and I love it!

Thank you, Sara, Hugh and Jim.

Agree that a fair share of the opacity we see in corporate speak probably does have its roots in lawyering.

And yes, measurement - like clarity and focus - is a tricky thing. Picking the right thing to measure - or to bring focus and clarity to - is hard. That's probably why we so readily slip into vague language.

Appreciate the comments and insights, all! Sara, so glad you stumbled in!

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About The Author

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    Compensation consultant Ann Bares is the Managing Partner of Altura Consulting Group. Ann has more than 20 years of experience consulting with organizations in the areas of compensation and performance management.

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