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Aug 29, 2016

A glossary of IR euphemisms

There’s more than one way to break bad news

Challenging is one of the most common corporate euphemisms for plain old ‘bad’, but what if you’re looking for something more original? Consult our complete glossary of IR terms for inspiration.


Management de-selection – Board member fired
Management down-selected – Demotion by a board level
Unforecasted predecessor transition management – Poor succession planning


Remaining optimistic – Not confident about the future
Market oscillations – Volatility
Consistent performance – Mediocre long-term performance


Volume-related production schedule adjustment – We are not selling enough stuff
Production facility site correction – We have only just realized we aren’t selling enough stuff
Responding to exigent circumstances – Our biggest shareholder says we’re not selling enough stuff
Realigning our manufacturing operations – We hired some management consultants
Opportunistic margin improvements – We hired some management consultants


Failing to meet our high standards – Nefarious behavior
Internal judgment misalignment – Culture failure
Unprecedented protocol violation – Fraud is endemic at our organization
Disagreements as to the characterization of facts – We are running an internal investigation


Rebalancing human capital – We are firing lots of people
Responding to an undulating operating environment – We are firing lots of people
Adjusting to shifts in demand – We are firing lots of people
Headcount adjustment – We are firing lots of people
Personnel realignment – We are firing lots of people
Human resource realignment – We are firing lots of people
Rightsizing – We are firing lots of people
Re-engineering – We are firing lots of people
Cost-improvement plans – We are firing middle managers
Corporate out-placing – We are firing lots of people at head office
Involuntary methodologies – We would rather not fire lots of people. But we have to
Unforeseen human supply and demand miscalibration – We are firing lots of people


Performance was challenged – Our costs were too high and our sales too low
Poor sales execution – We need to fire our head of sales
We have a lot of discovery about operating inefficiencies ahead of us – Our costs are too high
Misalignment between projected and actual growth – We need to fire our management team. But we won’t

This article appeared in the Fall 2016 issue of IR Magazine