Drive to thrive

If you're reading this having set out with me on the Benign to Five journey right back at the starting point - the very first column - thank you. You'll no doubt remember that I long ago compared modern journeys to the wonderful (although admittedly futile) adventures that took place in the 1970s Japanese TV series, Monkey, and I think of you, Dear Reader, as my loyal, lascivious and temperamental Pigsy.

If you're reading this having set out with me on the Benign to Five journey right back at the starting point - the very first column - thank you. You'll no doubt remember that I long ago compared modern journeys to the wonderful (although admittedly futile) adventures that took place in the 1970s Japanese TV series, Monkey, and I think of you, Dear Reader, as my loyal, lascivious and temperamental Pigsy.

You'll no doubt also remember that I have already removed obstacles on your path to better in-office communication by revealing to you the most useful words in the English language. In the category of Most Outstanding Noun, the incomparable "learnings". In the category of Most Outstanding Adjective, the unimpeachable "strategic". And now for the blue riband Most Outstanding Verb.

By far the best verb in the English language today is "drive".

Where only a few short years ago you could drive a car, a truck, a train, and that was about it, in 2013 you can put drive in front of nearly any noun and no colleague worth their corporate salt will bat an eyelid. That makes it a valuable linguistic commodity.

You can drive value to shareholders, drive visitors to your website, drive inputs, outputs and throughputs. You can drive impact, engagement, progress, change, investment and value. You can drive happiness, spaghetti, molluscs, existential angst and post-apocalyptic cassowaries.

Think I'm being silly with those last few? Well, go on, Pigsy, test my theory yourself. At work on Monday, match drive with the most unlikely noun you can think of and see if anyone pulls you up.