What Do You Think About Girl Speak?

Posted on August 18, 2015

Last week, one of my best friends sent me a link to the viral video on Gawker where a comedian calls 911 b/c his girlfriend is using “girl speak” – phrases like “OMG”, “I’m dying!”, “Stop It!”, etc.

My friends and I thought this was hysterical because we are guilty. We really do speak and communicate like that when we’re around each other in our personal time.

The article that came out in Elle Magazine says that this “girl speak” is moving from our personal lives into our professional lives – especially between women ages 20-40 at work.

The article goes on to quote several professionals who note this casual talk from young interviewees. I’m sure you are doing what I’m doing right now – evaluating yourself. You are probably thinking, “hmmm….do I do this?” “Do I take the way I speak to my friends in my personal time and speak like that at work?” I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t guilty of that myself at times.

As I think more on the topic, I’m reminded of the girl who worked for me for two weeks and texted me, “Dude!” – or another young woman who always greeted me with, “Wassup?” – why did these women feel it was appropriate to speak with me like I was their friend? And more alarmingly, who else would they speak to like this? Clients? Vendors? Other executives?

Years ago, I read Ivanka Trump’s book, The Trump Card, and I clearly remember an entire section on the importance of maintaining your sense of professionalism at work. It’s not only important to communicate professionally in-person and over the phone but also via email. I reference Ivanka’s story in my new book, Welcome To The Real World.

Let’s all do our part in re-thinking the way we communicate, evaluating ourselves, and making sure there is a difference between the way we communicate at home (with friends/family) and in the workplace. I don’t want a colleague or business partner to think about me like the girl in the video…..do you?