For tortured, retch-worthy business-speak it’s hard to top this

Ideas

WORDS IN THE HAND: REACH OUT

For tortured, retch-worthy business-speak it’s hard to top this

A column to satisfy your inner grammar nerd

Journalist

One of the few non-Covid-related memes that raised a laugh out of me recently (maybe not a full-bellied guffaw but at least a muted snicker; everything seems less amusing as the pandemic wears on) had to do with the odious expression “reach out”.

Irish publisher Cormac Kinsella posted a diagram on his Instagram feed headed with this question: “Is it acceptable for me to use the term ‘reach out’ in the workplace?”

Beneath the question was a diamond shape, and inside the diamond was written: “Are you a member of The Four Tops?” From the lateral corners of the diamond two arrows pointed down: the first to “Yes”, in which case “it’s acceptable”; and the second to “No”, which was accompanied by “stop it immediately”...

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