Gob-Smackingly Good Analysis

I am English.

If there is one thing I hate, really hate, it is the way that Americans, and more specifically Americans employed by Microsoft, mess with the English language.  Whenever I type something it is a constant battle replacing z’s with s’s (as in realised) or pushing u’s back into colour and favour.

Every time I have to set my spell checker to “British English” as opposed to “American English” (wouldn’t that be American?) I start swearing inside.  I live in Nottingham, England.  I couldn’t be more English, I speak The Queen’s English, period.  I mean full stop.

So I was startled (and secretly pleased) to read an article about the way in which “Britishisms” are polluting the American’s language.  Apparently Americans are now using the terms “gob-smacked”, “kerfuffle” and “chat-up”.  We have Harry Potter and the Spice Girls to thank for this linguistic contamination of “American English”.

I would never have believed it, I was convinced that Microsoft’s brand of American imperialism was gradually taking over my language.  Clearly there is more to the story than immediately meets the eye.

I was guilty of focusing in on the things that irritated and jumped out at me rather than standing back and looking at the bigger picture.

The same thing happens at work, we analyse our hunches to death, convinced that we will find an answer, but the reality is that we would see far more if we just backed up a little and took in the bigger picture.

  • Instead of looking at first call resolution, how about looking at total call volume?
  • Instead of looking at mobile phone costs, how about looking at telephony costs?
  • Instead of looking at your department, how about looking at all departments?

You might be gob-smacked by what you find.

Operations AnalysisRead another opinion

Image by bruce-asher


  1. Hi James,
    Sage advice indeed. Taking time to step back and look at the bigger picture is never wasted time.


  2. Then eat the elephant one bite at a time?

  3. HEllo James
    Excellent advice. I think of this as the road less travelled: looking with new eyes and see what is so in a very different way. Yet we work on automatic pilot – our habitual ways of being, seeing, thinking, feeling,doing. And we actively have to teach ourselves new ways. That takes time and effort over a prolonged period of time. Too much hard work! Much easier to blame Microsoft, the customers, your colleagues, your staff etc.

    All the best

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