Dealing with co-workers is not fun. Dealing with co-workers who overuse office lingo and think any issue that arises requires 2 meetings and a sub-committee is borderline torture. I’m not saying there are some days at my job that I would rather take my chances at Guantanamo Bay, but I’m also not not saying that. Every office has a Martha, and for the most part every office has the same phrases that are used far too often. I’m here to power rank these phrases from first to worst, based on how often they are used, how much trouble one can expect to find themselves in if they hear such phrases, and what your co-workers really mean when they send them to you.


“Per my last email”

Everyone has heard this one before, and it’s honestly pretty amateur. It’s basically office slang for ‘bitch, can you read?!’ Chances are you’ll be fine, it’s just someone being a bit petty. Shoot back a witty response and give a wink next time you see them at the water cooler.


“Let’s circle back”

a.k.a. I don’t have time to deal with this at the moment, so kindly figure it out on your own.


“Hope this helps”

They might as well be saying ‘leave me the fuck alone’. Chances are you aren’t getting a response back, so you might wanna look in another direction.


“As stated below”

Read the whole damn chain before answering, dumbass. And whatever you do, do NOT reply all!


“I love a challenge”

One of my personal favorites. I’m fairly certain my boss knows what I really mean when I say this, which is ‘this job sucks’. Sure, I’m gonna try to do whatever impossible task I was asked to do, but no shot that it actually ever gets done.


“Going forward, I would prefer that you…”

This typically means you really fudged up, and don’t do it again. Proceed with a bit of caution, or throw it to the wind. It’s your call, chief. Maybe you enjoy getting certain co-workers a little fired up from time to time, it sure keeps things exciting. In that case, always do the exact thing that they told you not to.


There you have it, a complete list of overused office phrases at their worst. Feel free to add any of your own and let me know which ones I missed. Be on the lookout for these going forward, and if you haven’t noticed them being used in the past, especially in this context, then chances are you are the problem.