February 6, 2004

The CEO's guide to insurance jargon

Every industry has its own jargon, but am I wrong in thinking workers comp has more than its fair share? Not only are we loaded down with great heaping doses of inscrutable insurance verbiage, we also inherit legal, health care, risk management, and employee benefits lingo too. I have the sneaking suspicion that there is more than one CEO or CFO who is flummoxed by the language in the annual renewal policy, but I doubt we will find many who admit to that.

A dictionary search on the word jargon will suggest that the word refers to a specialized technical terminology characteristic of a particular subject or, alternately, a characteristic language of a particular group (as among thieves). Take your pick - I leave you to be the judge on that. Myself, I blame the proliferation on marketing folks who are continually trying to sex up what is essentially a rather dry topic.

Since our continuing quest to translate all jargon-rich workers comp discussions into plain layman's English is still a nascent movement that has not yet reached a critical mass in terms of subscribers, you may want to visit this comprehensive workers compensation glossary courtesy of NILS INSource. They have also compiled glossaries on risk management, employee benefits, law and legal matters, and a host of other insurance related topics. Bookmark these handy links and at your next social event, you can regale folks with a discussion about contingent experience modification factor rating endorsements.

Oh - and while we are on the topic of reference tools, bookmark this site: OneLook Dictionary Source. This is a dictionary search engine that indexes more than 900 dictionaries and specialized glossaries - go try it. Once you get hooked, it will be one of your main reference tools.



Excellent resource! Thanks for including this. I know a number of people who need a quick reference for industry terms.

Thanks to Anita Campbell. We recommend her excellent weblog, Small Business Trends, to all business leaders seeking to wade through the fog of today's difficult business issues.


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This page contains a single entry by Julie Ferguson published on February 6, 2004 9:21 AM.

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