Your Handy Guide To Office Speak

16-Jul-2019 10:20:14 / by The Insurance Institute

The Insurance Institute

So you've landed the job. Congrats! Easing into a new position can be daunting, especially if its your first full time job. You may find yourself in a meeting, or reading through emails and not having a clue what everyone is talking about. We've all been there.

But don't worry! We're here to help you to get to grips with office lingo. Here's a breakdown of the top 7 phrases you need to know before starting your new job!




1. On-boarding

This is what is currently happening to you. It is the process by which new employees are brought into the company. It can include everything from showing you where the bathrooms are to giving you training in the various software programs you will be using.

2. Bandwidth

This isn't just a term used when you transmit a signal. in office speak, it means not having the energy, time or mental capacity to deal with a situation. it's also sometimes called 'head-space' and is commonly used in sentences such as - 'I don't have the bandwidth to take on that project today'. Cautionary note: this is not something a new employee shouldn't say out loud in their first week!

3. All-hands

When an all hands meeting is called, it means everyone is invited and/or expected to attend - as in the naval order 'all hands on deck'. Many companies want their workers to feel included and in the know, so they hold these big meetings and include people from all departments.

4. Circle back

This is a version of 'checking in', albeit with a slightly more passive aggressive punch. if your boss is circling back with you, it means she wants a progress report. it's good to make sure you have one for her.

5. Touch base offline

let's say you're in a meeting and something like a private personnel matter is raised. your manager may suggest that the conversation be moved offline - in other words, go private. to touch base offline is to have a one-on-one meeting.

6. Drill down and deep dive

If you’ve been asked to “drill down,” your manager wants more information. To drill down is to dig deeper, investigate more fully, or explore the situation in greater depth. And when you do all that, it will be said that you took a “deep dive” into the problem.

7. Pain points

Most businesses create opportunities by coming up with solutions to problems. Those problems are pain points. Your manager also may ask you what the pain points are for your job. She’s asking what’s bothering you, and giving you an opening to discuss ways to streamline company procedures and work more effectively.

If you're interested in starting your career in insurance, head to our website to view our qualifications and find out more about how you can get started.