There once was a well worn tradition in tech media that if you’d climbed the greasy pole sufficiently to achieve the much vaunted ‘Editor’ title but wanted more then that was the point where you start to make up new titles. ‘Editor-in-Chief’ was one of my favorites and shorthand for a lazy bastard who couldn’t be bothered to continue doing a real editorial job. Then there was ‘Editorial Research Fellow,’ but curiously never ‘Editorial Research Lass.’ Speaks volumes to male domination. Thankfully, most print media positions have faded away to their digital equivalent and there just isn’t the money to entertain such grandiosity. Not so in the social space and other spaces.
Equivalent affectations have invaded the PR/marketing wonk driven world inside business and tech companies alike. This quasi-viral nonsense is spreading as well. We have Social Media Expert, Social Media Guru and Social Media Evangelist to name but three, all of which I view as shorthand for rides a bike and has two brain cells working – not necessarily in combination.
One of my current favorites is Data Scientist. If you get to the nut of what this is about then it’s really a glorified statistician. Not that I have anything against stats wonks, even when they couldn’t hit a barn door with some of their predictions. Heck, stats was a required paper when I trained as an accountant and boy do I know how to mess with your head on that topic.
But the current mother of invention – courtesy of Sameer Patel on Facebook is….Digital Transformation Accelerator. He says:
That’s a real job title of a real person…Accelerating something that is not fully understood. Excellent.
Are you kidding me? Apparently not with Vijay Vijayasankar chiming in with:
I saw exactly that name as a service offering from an analyst firm recently.
He was being kind – he should have said: anal-yst, my contemptuous title for those self styled ‘analysts’ who mostly would not know a piece of code if it slapped them in the face but have marketing smarts in spades, inventing new trends at every turn to support all manner of wild theses – or is it feces?
Needless to say, the conversation became amusing with offerings like:
- Collaboration Svengali – evil that one
- Sandokan – tough sounding
- Futurist Thought Leader on Digital Transformation Acceleration – atomic particle name gone wonky perhaps?
My personal contribution? Chief Flatulence Evangelist because the main pre-requisite for these types of role is that the person be capable of being a grade A windbag, spouting shit in a way that beguiles people into thinking their shit smells sweet. When of course it doesn’t.
Have your own ideas on that? LMK in comments.
In the meantime, I hear Naomi Bloom is rounding up supporters for my promotion to CFE. Yessiree – I can do that with the best of them. Now move over while I inflate the windbag and flex my three brain cells for HR’s psychometric testing session.