Stop ‘utilizing’ these words!

The owner of a PR shop highlights a variety of words—some of which were invented or popularized by PR pros—that we all should avoid.

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Yes, certain incorrect and overused words do recur: My personal dreads are “hone in” for “home in” or anything with “utilize,” as well as PR jargon such as “buzz” and “optics.”

In honor of the 25th anniversary of “The Princess Bride,” here’s a list of words commonly misused or overused in professional circles or in the office. Some are merely old, some are incorrect, and others should never have seen the light of day.

Any nouns used as verbs. And vice versa. “Onboarding, “concretize,” and “webify” are three offenders. I swore I’d never say “productize,” but after 20 years in tech PR, it rolls off my tongue. Then there’s “showroom,” as in, “I showroomed the new tablet, then ordered it from Amazon.” Most nouns should never be “verbed.”

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