Vague Language & Mumbo Jumbo Sentences [Worst Examples]
What is vague language and what does ‘being too vague’ look like? In this article you will learn more about this communication trap and you will find examples of vague language. You will also learn how things can be improved and how you can expose people with vague language. Read more…
What is vague language?
Vague language is abstract language, without being effective . You can therefore speak of vague and unclear language use. This does not bring the speaker ‘to the point’.
Some people do this on purpose with the intention of manipulating. However, most people do this out of habit . So, an essential part of communication lessons in schools and universities is to learn to avoid vague language.
How can you recognize or apply vague language use yourself?
Elements of vague language are:
- Jargon, technical terms and unnecessarily complicated words. This is a common problem in marketing and management.
- Indirect language use: ‘Statistics Netherlands wrote that …’ instead of: ‘Statistics Netherlands wrote …’
- Evasive language. The speaker avoids a question and therefore deviates to generalities.
- Itching words and office language.
- A crappy application of the Milton Model.
By the way, if you click on the links in the list above, you can learn a lot more about the components of vague, abstract language. But read this article first …
The pitfalls of vague language
A major pitfall of crappy vague language is that people tend to sit back and do less. Vague language use removes all movement, concrete verbs – and therefore action – from communication. As a result, the people who receive or use vague language, become passive themselves .
The pitfalls are also that entire groups of people can be manipulated. Chic words are impressive and seem meaningful and sophisticated. This can make a worthless message seem very meaningful.
So vague words can be ambiguous: one can think that he is busy with all kinds of good things, when one is actually serving a bad thing, such as a pyramid scheme or an evil sectarian purpose.
Another effect of vague language is that it can overwhelm people. Sects use this to overwhelm people with difficult words, without anything happening in substance and without actually doing good deeds.
In many studies, vague language is overlooked
Fortunately, in many university and college studies, the teachers pay attention to the use of vague language. In that case something is said or the student gets points deducted.
However, there is not strict enough attention to vague language. At the end of many commercial courses, many students still end up in the professional field with a lot of abstract and unclear language use.
If you can’t explain something simply, you don’t understand it yourself.
– Albert Einstein
Example of vague language
Recently I wrote the following congratulations for a former fellow student. During our studies we were able to find all kinds of ways to avoid difficult questions from the teacher with vague language. Since then we’ve had a running gag around vague language and itchy words.
Congratulations on your master in strategic management. It is completely deserved because you are a hands-on team player.
I still cherish added value at our own start-up in which we together breathed in the primary processes in our collaboration in 2013.
Piet Jansen has an eye for detail and has delivered added value in the implementation of complex supply chain processes, where the importance of strategic policy was paramount. The feedback from the optimal business architecture, in which the feedback from Mr Jansen facilitated the milestones, was the starting point for coordinating the working groups. The Human Capital created conditions for the organizational development, whereby there was sufficient support for the processes.
Knowledge management was closely related to the definition of efficient business models, in which the commitment of the sounding boards to Mr Jansen was decisive. The initial impetus for the concept plans was closely related to the project organization.
Thanks to Piet, the determination of the possibilities of the coordination of systems was done in such a way that the relationships are correct. As a result, the organization of management performance could lead to enthusiasm and confidence, resulting in integration of actionable data.
Friend, you are always looking for great articles, blogs and videos to work on your way to success.
Another example. When Eva Jinek switched from NOS to RTL in 2019, the press communication was:
She gets more possibilities, opportunities and challenges.
She just gets more money, but that was not said.
More examples of vague language: you can easily get away with it …
The next time you’re in vague deliberation with “do-gooders”, you can shout all kinds of meaningless terms and get away with it. Everyone will agree. That is the power of the milton model.
Give it a try and get inspired by these vague examples:
- Indeed, I think we can do community building by crystallizing the qualities of the youth. With this we can promote social welfare.
- Yes, we can direct meaningful relationships in a community by supporting community-building processes.
- Exactly, by consulting we can strengthen the search for truth.
- Well said, it is good that we work together on the development of moral education to connect the capacities.
- Yes, and developing moral capacities contributes to the integration of the community.
- In this way we can indeed contribute to the progress of society.
- As we realize support from the families and communities, we can apply the moral principles through service to the community.
- Our powers have been channeled to a higher purpose, giving us the will to move forward.
- We can create a supportive environment for the development of moral behavior.
- The human family is one. I think we propagate this well because we empower the youth to take initiatives for their own moral growth, responsibility and qualities.
- Society is currently problematic, lost and struggling. With spiritual insight, tools, moral structure, noble being and expression, we can initiate developments selflessly, justly and in service.
- We are now engaged in loving friendship, mutual encouragement, and common endeavor, which also characterizes the essential relationships that bind together the components of society.
- Indeed, this welcome development indicates the magnitude of the reservoir of energy and dedication available to the youth.
- Let us continue to assume our responsibilities to realize the collective capacity, although this is plagued by countless social forces.
- The community is a unit of civilization. We work with a common goal for the well-being of the people within and beyond our own borders.
- We are in the process of transforming humanity’s lives, thanks to the desire to bring about constructive change.
- Let’s help society refine their character and take responsibility for the well-being of the communities.
- Realizing the world in which we must navigate, with its pitfalls and opportunities, naturally understands the importance of growing spiritually and being prepared.
- The youth has wonderful abilities that need to be channeled. Here lies the opportunity for personal growth and for improving the ability to contribute to social progress.
- The effect of negative societal forces on many communities has led to the spread of various societal problem situations. We must counteract these negative social forces so that we can work for the common good.
- The fact that we work together for service helps us avoid negative patterns of behavior. We are united in what we seek, we are walking in the same direction. Others do not have a unified vision.
- The path of service allows for different paces and advancements.
- I like what Marie said. It is important that our efforts are genuine.
Well, that was a useful meeting! Look, it’s already a break. Let’s eat, then talk and then we can go home. We just have to accept that the actual work has been neglected.
Action always comes before (vague) language
Have you ever been to such a meeting where only vague language is thrown around? This often happens in meetings that are apparent ‘do-gooders’.
The people who actually make the world a better place are not using vague language at all, but are practicing outside loving deeds.
In the meantime, the ‘do-gooders’ are in pasive throwing vague terms such as ‘community building’ and ‘meaningful relationships.’
- Check out this article about how action is much more noble than mere talk.
- Loving acts and random acts of kindness.
- The meta-model brings movement in vague language again. Moreover, you can use this model to expose people with vague language .
On your luck!