(Screw the Pooch is an annoying business term and is just one of the 212 Most Annoying Business Phrases Managers Effuse, Confuse, and Overuse detailed in the hilarious must-have guide for every workplace: The 30,000-Pound Gorilla in the Room. Available right now on Amazon.)
Screw the Pooch
An earlier annoying phrase we examined, rightsizing, is what’s known as a euphemism. That is, it’s not just a replacement or synonym, but a nicer way to say something.
Screw the pooch is the exact opposite of a euphemism (unfortunately, there is no true antonym for euphemism, so let’s just call this an unnecessary and odd vulgarity).
Screw the pooch refers to making a gigantic, perhaps career-ending mistake; that is, screwing up royally.
While a euphemism is used to soften the impact of a phrase, screw the pooch is used to overemphasize the issue at hand. We would argue unnecessarily; though, there are those who believe accusing someone of making a gigantic mistake is not enough; that it needs more “oomph,” if you will.
To those managers we say this: are you really that comfortable discussing bestiality at work? Moreover, can making a mistake – regardless of how large – even compare?
Replacement phrases: Gigantic mistake; Colossal error
The 30,000-Pound Gorilla in the Room is available on Amazon