Sunday, 25 January 2015


Showing uncertainly

Speakers in the business world and in government are fond of saying 'going forward' to mean 'from now on', 'in the future', or even 'now'. It gives a sense of action, purpose, and direction that appeals to many people.

However many other people find it pretentious and annoying, especially when it is used simply to indicate that the future is being talked about. Since in English our verbs do this job nicely, “going forward” is often superfluous. In a statement like 'Going forward, we’re going to have to budget more for advertising', the sentence would be just as clear and less cluttered if the first two words were dropped.

Going forward is purported to mean 'in the future' or 'somewhere down the road' when in fact it is an attempt to dodge the use of these words, which generally indicate 'I don't know'. A newer development in corporate doublespeak, in most companies it is grounds for dismissal to release a press release without mentioning something 'going forward'. Going forward, you will likely see this turning up everywhere.

'Thinking outside the box' and 'going forward' are some of the most hated management phrases, a survey has found.


Recent posting on language

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