Corporate speak 企业用语
Finn: Hi Li. I didn't see you in the canteen today.
Li: I had to go and buy these...
Finn: An envelope and a nice picture of a sunny beach?
Li: It's the sky, Finn. My boss told me that we need blue-sky thinking and we need to push the envelope if we want to succeed in the current market.
Finn: Oh, right. And what are you going to do with this envelope, and this picture, Li?
Li: Well, the beach has a blue-sky... so maybe I need to push it into the envelope... and send it to... the clients? I'm not sure.
Finn: Li, I think what he wants has nothing to do with the sky or envelopes. These are two expressions people use in business nowadays. It's corporate language - or as we say, corporate speak.
Li: What do they mean?
Finn: Well, in English, 'blue-sky thinking' means having ideas which are very original, even if they're not practical or realistic. Your boss wants you to be creative.
Li: So 'blue-sky thinking' 代表天马行空式的思维，即创新思维，尽管想法不够实际或不脚踏实地，但思路新颖，具有原创精神。这就是你老板想看到的，即创新思维。And what do I do with this envelope?!
Finn: Well, the expression 'to push the envelope' means to go even further than others and do things that might be new or risky or dangerous!
Li: 'To push the envelope' 意思是挑战极限。尝试他人没有做过的事情，尽管有风险也不在话下。还是强调一种创新意识。不过我倒纳闷儿了，为什么我老板不直接说 creative 呢？
Finn: Well, the world of business has its own special terms. Let's hear some examples of how to use the two expressions in today's Authentic Real English.
It's all about blue-sky thinking right now; mobile phones are no longer just for calls!
We're not just a normal airline. We're going to push the envelope and offer balloon flights.
Li: Oh, so all my boss wants is for me to have ideas which are new and brave. What about your boss, Finn?
Finn: Well, my line manager told me this morning: "I expect you to think out of the box. If you don't step up to the plate by end of play you'll have to face the music".
Li: What on earth does he mean, Finn?
Finn: I really have no idea. I think we'd need another four programmes to explain those examples of corporate speak. Another time. I'm tired just thinking about it. Bye.