A Humorous Take on the

World of Sales and Management

Boring presentations and meetings are an occupational hazard for those of us in sales and management.  How can we cope?

To learn how to endure these sessions in a mature and professional manner, see a link at the end for a terrific video by Dan Pink*.

To endure these sessions in an immature and unprofessional manner, re ad on...

Mike S.
Gamify your Meetings

You can spice up any meeting by creating a sidebar game that you play secretly with other co-conspirators.  Below, you will find two games that will liven up any meeting or vendor presentation.

The Word Game:  "Hi Bob"

This first game was inspired by the 1980's drinking game "Hi Bob".  College students would watch the Bob Newhart show.  Whenever one of the characters on the show said "Hi Bob", everyone would drink a beer or take a swig from a liquor bottle.  This legendary game has its own Wikipedia page.  

Bob Newhart
"We Turned a lot of Students into Drunks"

Your Secret Word Game:

I used to work for crusty business leader who was fond of pounding the table and bloviating about vendors, employees, customers, and anyone else who fell short of his expectations.  

He repeated himself repeatedly.  We were able to liven up the weekly thrashings by betting on which word or phrase he would say first.  Some of his favorites:
  • "All salespeople care about is commission"
  • "If you can't do it, I'll find somebody who can"
  • "That's what we pay 'em to do, dammit"
Everyone on his management team would throw $20.00 into a hat before the meeting, and guess which key word or phrase he would say first.  The first correct guess won the cash.

It became even more fun when one of us would "cheat" by poking the bear with a well-targeted question, such as "do you think we should help our sales team by giving them leads?"  We all knew how he would erupt and what he'd say.  The $200.00 you won in the kitty would soften the pain of the verbal abuse you took to win it.

Buzzword Bingo

When a word game isn't practical, an even more engrossing game is Buzzword Bingo.   The Buzzword Bingo name was coined in 1993 by Silicon Graphics scientists Tom Davis and Seth Katz.

The Buzzword Bingo cards will have key words, cliches, and acronyms that are likely to pop up in any bad presentation.  Just like the Bingo you play at the Senior Living Home or Cruise Excursion, you cross off words on your card until you get five across, down, or in a vertical line.

The great thing about Buzzword Bingo is the worse the presentation, the more fun the game will be.  Here's an example of a bingo card:

Buzzword Bingo 2

Buzzword Bingo for I.T.

Of course, Information Technology uses a blizzard of buzzwords.  By using industry- or even vendor-specific cards, you can have even more excitement during a bad presentation.

To play Buzzword Bingo with a roomful of people, you'll want to generate multiple cards, each with a different set of buzzwords.  Otherwise, everyone could conceivably "win" at the same time.

Fortunately, there's an app that can help you create your own deck of cards.  Here's a link to a Buzzword Bingo card generator.  

You'll never be bored in a meeting again if you put these games to use.  The more tired cliches, industry jargon, and meaningless acronyms, the better.  And when somebody suddenly jumps up in a meeting and shouts "Bingo", you'll know exactly why.

**Here's a link to the Dan Pink video on how to make meetings less awful.


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Mike Schmidtmann
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