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Corporate jargon by states
Click to enlarge. (Textio Graphic)

I always knew I should have looked for work in Hawaii. After all, that’s where the “magic happens” according to a new study by Seattle startup Textio which identifies the corporate cliches most used in job postings in each U.S. state.

By analyzing millions of want ads, Textio’s predictive engine picked out the jargon that it says can negatively impact a company’s ability to fill a vacancy in a timely manner with the best candidate.

Forget the glass ceiling in Washington state, for example. Prospective employees are expected to do something related to going “through the roof” according to Textio. It’s unclear what type of work would require such an action — perhaps job postings refer too often to sales figures that were “through the roof” last quarter and you’re expected to keep that up.

Here are some gems from other states:

  • In North Dakota, employers want to find a worker who “drives change.” That’s good news for anyone out of Colorado who failed to get that job where “change driver” was the most-used term.
  • New Yorkers who can “herd cats” are apparently sought after. It’s unclear whether they’d be considered more qualified if they previously looked for work in Michigan, where having the “eye of the tiger” is deemed important.
  • Get in the game if you seek work in California, where you’ll be expected to “tee up” like a golfer, or Ohio, where hitting it “out of the park” is necessary even if you don’t play baseball.

Whether the job wants you to “push the envelope,” “close the loop,” “touch base,” “blaze the trail” or “shift the paradigm,” Textio definitely wants to get the word out that language matters.

Textio was founded in 2014 and has raised nearly $30 million to date. The company analyzes hiring outcomes data from more than 250 million job posts to score a listing, and provides feedback on everything from word choice, to organization of the listing to style when formulating its score.

Here’s the complete list of terms by state:

  • Alabama :  Value add
  • Alaska :  Corporate values
  • Arkansas: Driven results
  • Arizona: Build synergy
  • California : Tee Up
  • Colorado : Change driver
  • Connecticut : Leverage expertise
  • Delaware :  Exhibits good judgement
  • Florida : Win-win outcome
  • Georgia: Hit your numbers
  • Hawaii : Magic Happens
  • Iowa : Exit strategy
  • Idaho : Achieve alignment
  • Illinois : Be action-oriented
  • Indiana : Fire in the belly
  • Kansas : Identify opportunity
  • Kentucky : Possess strength
  • Louisiana : Synergize
  • Massachusetts : Thought leaders
  • Maryland : Corporate alignment
  • Maine : Goes the extra mile
  • Michigan: Eye of the tiger
  • Minnesota : Face time
  • Mississippi : Bring to the table
  • Missouri : Company value
  • Montana : Strategic initiative
  • Nebraska : Overachiever
  • Nevada : Increase productivity
  • New Hampshire : Manage escalation
  • New Jersey : In our DNA
  • New Mexico : Close the loop
  • New York : Herd cats
  • North Carolina : Good practice
  • North Dakota: Drives change
  • Ohio:  Out of the park
  • Oklahoma : Bleeding edge
  • Oregon:  Revolutioneering
  • Rhode Island : Push the envelope
  • South Carolina : Buy in
  • South Dakota:  Reach out to you
  • Tennessee:  Touch base
  • Texas : Statement of duties
  • Utah : Learnings
  • Vermont : KPIs
  • Virginia : Not intimidated
  • Washington : Through the roof
  • Washington DC : Shift the paradigm
  • West Virginia : Off the floor
  • Wisconsin : Blaze the trail
  • Wyoming : Strategic communications
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