职场黑话手册 | 经济学人双语泛读

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Bartleby 巴托比

The business phrasebook职场黑话手册

A short guide to what your colleagues really mean

你的同事到底说的啥意思?这里有一份简要指南

REED HASTINGS HAS built the culture at Netflix around it. Ray Dalio made it a founding principle at Bridgewater, a successful investment fund. “Radical candour” is the idea that bracing honesty is the best way to run a business: no one dances around the truth, and swifter feedback improves performance.

里德·黑斯廷斯(Reed Hastings)围绕它打造了奈飞的文化。雷·达里奥(Ray Dalio)把它作为桥水(Bridgewater,一家成功的投资基金)的立身之本。“彻底坦诚”的理念认为鼓励诚实是经营企业的最佳方式:每个人都不回避事实,更迅速的反馈提升了业绩。

Most firms rely on a messier doctrine. People rarely say what they mean, but hope that their meaning is nonetheless clear. Think Britain, but with paycheques. To navigate this kind of workplace, you need a phrasebook.

大多数公司都依赖一套更含混的话术。人们很少直白地说出他们的真实意图,却又希望自己的意思已经传达得明白无误。就像是英国人那样说话,但得拿工资。在这样的职场中打拼,你需要一本黑话手册。


“I hear you”“我知道了。

Ostensible meaning: You’re making a legitimate point

表面意思:你的看法有道理

Actual meaning: Be quiet

实际意思:别说了。


“Let’s discuss this offline”“我们会后再议。”

Ostensible meaning: We shouldn’t waste other people’s valuable time

表面意思:我们不要浪费其他人的宝贵时间

Actual meaning: Let’s never speak of this again (see also: “Let’s put a pin in it”)

实际意思:我们再也别提这事了(“把它放进待议事项"同理)


 

“We should all learn to walk in each other’s shoes”

“我们都该学着换位思考”

Ostensible meaning: Shared understanding results in better outcomes

表面意思:彼此理解能带来更好的结果

Actual meaning: I need you to know that my job is a living hell

实际意思:你看不出我干这份工作是在活受罪吗


“I'm just curious…” “我就是好奇......”

Ostensible meaning: I’d like to know why you think that...

表面意思:我想知道你为什么这么想.......

Actual meaning: ...because it makes no sense to anyone else

实际意思:.因为这对我们其他人谁都说不通啊


“It’s great to have started this conversation”

“能展开这样的对话真是太好了”

Ostensible meaning: We’ve raised an important issue here 

表面意思:我们启动了一个重要的议题

Actual meaning: We’ve made absolutely no progress

实际意思:我们毫无进展“


“I wanted to keep you in the loop”

我原想让你随时知情的

Ostensible meaning: I am informing you of something minor 

表面意思:我要告诉你一件小事

Actual meaning: I should have told you this weeks ago

实际意思:我几周前就该告诉你了


“Do you have five minutes?”

“你有五分钟时间吗?”

Ostensible meaning: I have something trivial to say 

表面意思:我有点琐事要说说

Actual meaning: You are in deep, deep trouble

实际意思:你有麻烦了,大麻烦


“Let’s handle this asynchronously”

“我们分头处理这事吧”

Ostensible meaning: We’ll each work on this task in our own time

表面意思:我们各自找时间做这项工作

Actual meaning: I have to go to my Pilates class now

实际意思:我得去上普拉提课啦


“It’s on the product roadmap”

“这个在产品路线图上”

Ostensible meaning: It’ll be done soon

表面意思:这很快能做到

Actual meaning: It won’t be done soon

实际意思:这不会很快完成


“We’re moving to an agile framework”

“我们正在转向敏捷框架”

Ostensible meaning: We will work iteratively in response to user feedback 

表面意思:我们会响应用户的反馈,

Actual meaning: We’re literally planning to go round in circles

实际意思:我们就打算原地兜圈子“


“It’s a legacy tech stack”

这是个遗留下来的技术栈”

Ostensible meaning: It’s a rat’s nest of old and incompatible systems

表面意思:这是一大堆老旧又不兼容的系统

Actual meaning: None of this is our fault

实际意思:这压根不是我们的错


“We are a platform business”

“我们是个平台企业”

Ostensible meaning: We provide an ecosystem in which others can interact

表面意思:我们提供了一个生态系统,让其他人可以在这儿互动

Actual meaning: Let’s pretend we are a tech firm and see what happens to our valuation (see also: “as a service”, “network effects” and “flywheels”)

实际意思:让我们假装自己是家科技公司,看看我们的估值会如何(“即服务”、“网络效应”和“飞轮”同理)


“We are planning for the metaverse”

我们正在为元宇宙做准备

Ostensible meaning: We are ready for a shared, immersive digital world

表面意思:我们已经准备好迎接一个共享的、沉浸式的数字世界

Actual meaning: Ooh, look! A bandwagon! (see also: “Web3”)

实际意思:喔!看啊!是个风口!("Web3"同理)


“Bring your whole selves to work”

“在工作中完全展现自己吧”

Ostensible meaning: Be authentic and don’t be afraid to show vulnerability

表面意思:做真实的自己,别害怕显现你的脆弱

Actual meaning: But not those bits of your whole self, obviously

实际意思:但是,当然也别把你的某些模样亮出来


In a world of radical candour, there would be less need for translating. Most managers and colleagues could indeed be better at giving unvarnished feedback. Some words and phrases are so opaque they absorb all visible meaning.

在一个彻底坦诚的世界里,不需要那么多的翻译。大多数主管和同事的确也都能把话说得不那么拐弯抹角。有些词句太过隐晦了,根本搞不清到底要表达什么。

But there is an awful lot to be said for coded communication. Work is where people learn to manage social interactions, not define them out of existence. Transparency doesn’t necessarily travel well across borders. And perpetual bluntness is draining; humans constantly finesse and massage the messages they send in order to avoid open conflict. Radical candour is associated with firms that pay very well. That may be because this approach leads to greater success. It may be because otherwise most people wouldn’t put up with it.

但有关隐晦沟通可以讲的实在太多了。人们应在工作中学着管理社交互动,而不是列个清单让它们不复隐晦。透明不一定就能很好地跨越人与人的边界。而始终口无遮拦会让人筋疲力尽:为避免外部冲突,人类永远都在寻求更婉转的表达。目前那些推行彻底坦诚的公司薪酬都非常丰厚。可能是因为这种方式带来了更大的成功。也可能是因为,如果报酬不高,大多数人都会受不了这个。

(文章来源:the economist 2021.11.20期)

 

重点表达积累
Ostensible· 表面的;宣称的
agile敏捷的,灵活的
candour 真诚;诚恳;坦率
perpetual 一再反复的;无尽无休的,持续的
blunt直率的;不客气的;直言不讳的
draining使人疲惫的
put up with忍受

 

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