The most hated sports clichés in comms and PR

Slam dunk. Knocking it out of the ballpark. Going for a Hail Mary. Don’t let these overdone sports metaphors turn you into a walking cliché.

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The official start of fall is upon us, and that means more than just colorful foliage or a new Google doodle.

We’re also entering high season for sports clichés in business and communications. Football is underway, Major League Baseball is careening toward the playoffs, and the basketball and hockey seasons start within weeks.

That puts us at heightened risk for those buzzwords, catchphrases and other parasites that infest business communications and annoy us all, particularly when we slip up and use them ourselves.

Gail Sideman of Publiside, who works in sports PR, cites two hated sports clichés that have also crept into business use: “We’re going to give it 110 percent,” and, “We just take it one game at a time.”

“There are so many,” she says. “My big thing is not to be predictable. Say something that has substance.”

Here are some other clichés, buzzwords and tired metaphors to watch for this time of the year:

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