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“going forward” October 6, 2008

Posted by That Guy in Definition.
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going forward
GO-ing FOR-word

A lot of corporate terminology is focused on making things seem better than they are, and failing that, fooling employees into thinking action is being taken when really the only action is to say action is being taken.

Everybody got that?

Here’s how to tell when action isn’t being taken: the words “going forward” are used.

Nobody’s remembering to update the lunch-and-learn page on your company’s site? That’ll be Patrick’s job going forward, and it’ll be his responsibility to find someone to fill in if he’s on vacation.

Nobody’s sending out marketing e-mails? Quincy will take care of that going forward.

What about keeping track of company birthdays and putting them in the company newsletter? Rhoda can do it going forward — neverminding the fact that she’s part of the IT staff and is so busy fixing people’s passwords and deleting viruses that on a good day she might have an hour to do her own work.

See, another hallmark of “going forward” is that the person who has to do the job going forward (a) will already have a full plate, including at least two other going forward tasks and (b) probably won’t even be a part of the department that screwed up.

Going forward, you need to get used to that.

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