The WhyWork Vocabulary
Capability – the magical skill of convincing your computer that you know what you’re doing, even when you are randomly clicking buttons and sounding busy.
Capacity – the maximum amount of coffee that one can consume before achieving a perfect state of caffeinated enlightenment or spontaneous combustion, whichever comes first.
Caretaker – the unsung multitasking maestro in the organisation who is responsible for juggling the chaos of their working life and others, juggling project chaos with the finesse of a circus performer.
Caselaw – the ultimate fireplace stories for legal nerds and work design aficionados where judges profile their storytelling skills, turning mundane disputes into epic sagas with plot twists and drama. They permit the confluence of sociopolitcal forces and the occasional cameo appearances of obscure Latin phrases. Caselaw can affront our sensibilities and remind us of instances of a reality when the shit hits the fan.
Celebration – the forum where we all pretend that calories do not count for a day because there is cake.
Cha-Cha – the dance you perform around the office when you avoid the extra work assignments.
Chief – the chief cat herder, organising a class of entities that are inherently uncontrollable and wicked.
Client – the person who miraculously knows exactly what they want but only after they asked for something else and you’ve delivered on that. Also, the person who has asked for something vague that required your help to shape and define the problems so that they could articulate their needs, while you secretly wish that you could get paid like a lawyer for that advisory service.
Coffee – a magical elixir that turns “I can’t” into, “I can… after this cup.”
Coalesce – when diverse ideas come together like introverts in a social gathering, realising that they’re all a little ‘special’ in their own way.
Colleague – a fellow inmate in the office prison; someone that you pretend to like for the sake of workplace harmony, or at least until the coffee machine runs out.
Collusion – when two people decide to be naughty together and hope that nobody finds out.
Commute – the daily ritual of convincing yourself that sitting in traffic can be either meditative or productive (when it is neither).
Compartmentalise – the superpower of being able to separate work stressors from weekend relaxation, at least until its Monday morning again.
Competence vs Confidence – the eternal battle between knowing what you are doing and pretending to know what you are doing.
Composure – the art of looking serene and unfazed while internally calculating how many hours until the weekend starts.
Concoct – The art of creating something delectable or disastrous, depending on your level of courage.
Conference Call – the convenient way to transform a 5-minute task into a 45-minute meeting with 25 follow-up actions and three weeks of activity.
Confrontation – the awkward dance of truth where nobody really knows the steps, and someone’s toes always get stepped on.
Conjurer – a magician, who when asked about how a work concern has been resolved responds with a dazzling distraction.
Consultation – the forum in which everyone talks, no one listen, and, afterward, everyone does what they originally intended to do or prefer anyway.
Context – the magical force that turns a seemingly innocent scenario into a potential disaster.
Contravention – the act of doing precisely what you were told not to do, just to see what happens.
Cooee – the polite way to get attention in Australian bird language.
Coworkers – the person who steals your pens, snacks, and, occasionally, your sanity.
Creative block – when deadlines are due, and your brain decides to take an unannounced vacation.
Croissant – a flaky, buttery excuse to have dessert for breakfast without judgment, and the bread that was broken during the genesis of the idea for the WhyWork Podcast.
Crystallise – when an idea goes from being a vague thought to a full-blown, “A-HA!” moment, usually accompanied by the sound of mental bells ringing.
Cubicle – the modern adult playpen where creativity goes to die.
Cultivate – the delicate art of growing relationships or excuses for why you did not finish your work on time.
Cunning – not to be confused with ‘stunning’ or ‘stunts’, the ability to convince everyone that you are innocent, even when the cookie jar is empty and there are crumbs on your chin.
Curate – pretending that you are an expert by carefully selecting attractive artefacts or desirable resources and organising them as though they make perfect sense when they sit all together.
Curmudgeon – one with skin of crust, known for joints that creak, fluent in the language of ‘grumblese’ and possessing a black belt in sarcasm. Often found shaking fists at the sky, proclaiming, “Back in my day…” with a side vintage of grumpiness.
Custodian – the official title of the most protective person in the organisation, keeper of petty cash, holiday champagne budgets, Friday coffee cake contributions, and photocopying paper.