Business Goes Visual -- A Look at the Most-Shared Stories This Week

December 9, 2011

With only a few crucial weeks left before books close on the year, professionals seem to be spending their time, well, coasting. Our look at the top five most-shared stories reveals a deep desire to be entertained. We've got photos, funny business buzzwords, great moments in autocorrect and a piece on watching others watch web pages. Breaking business news took a backseat to beautiful images. Here's the list:

Top 5 most-shared articles on LinkedIn (Dec. 1, 2011 - Dec. 7, 2011) Follow @LinkedInToday

The trend makes a lot of sense. The markets are schizophrenic, euphoric over a Euro deal one minute, despairing over the lack of one next; U.S consumers are either saving the economy by spending or furthering driving the country into debt; and planning for 2012 is impossible with the economy in so much flux. There are more questions than answers. Who wouldn't rather look at an incredible photo of houses on fire after the Japanese tsunami? It's a haunting image of death, destruction and despair. But at least we know how it played out.

Dan Pallotta, the president of Advertising for Humanity, goes more micro in his take on the opacity of business today. His article for the Harvard Business Review -- the very clearly titled "I Don't Understand What Anyone is Saying Anymore" -- focuses on the ridiculous, meaningless dialog that takes place in thousands of conference rooms ever day. He runs through the five strains of the business buzzword "epidemic." For instance, there is the phrase, typically chanted by a CEO: "Let's exceed the customer's expectations!" Writes Dan:

Employees who hear it just leave the pep rally, inhabit some kind of temporary dazed intensity, and then go back to doing things exactly the way they did before the speech. Customers almost universally never experience their expectations being met, much less exceeded.

Inc. rides to the rescue with a better way than empty phrases to get more from your employees: praise them, throw parties for them, get rid of managers and surprise them with lunches. There are a few more you can find the list on the site. The article also has a pretty funny stock photo of business people dancing for those would prefer it. Inc. clearly knows where its readers' minds are right now. Here are the other most-shared stories, broken down by industry.

[Ed note: A special shout out to the most-shared site among library workers: Hey girl. I like the library too. Who knew Ryan Gosling had such a thing for the Dewey Decimal System?]