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09-27-2015, 01:37 AM   #1
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I hate the phrase "it is what it is".

Just another random rant. Had a manager at work who would completely brush everything off with that phrase. Seems everyone is saying it these days. It's annoying.

09-27-2015, 01:51 AM   #2

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Copy that. It is what it is.
09-27-2015, 05:20 AM   #3

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My manager has 3 phrases that cover anything that may pop up, yet solve nothing.

They are:
"It is what it is"
"Do what you gotta do"
"Because I said so"

To me, these types of phrases scream incompetence! They're akin to excuses rather than solutions.
09-27-2015, 05:21 AM   #4
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09-27-2015, 05:27 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Auzzie-Phoenix Quote
Just another random rant. Had a manager at work who would completely brush everything off with that phrase. Seems everyone is saying it these days. It's annoying.
I'm guessing your manager is around 40 to 50 as that phrase became popular around 25 to 30 years ago, and some people tend to cling to phrases learned in their late teens, early 20's.

There are lots of catch phrases that people cling to and over use: cool, sick, gotcha, awesome, whatever and even far out. Then of course there are the ones we can't print here.
09-27-2015, 07:03 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Auzzie-Phoenix Quote
Had a manager at work who would completely brush everything off with that phrase.

As Al_Kahollick posted, "To me, these types of phrases scream incompetence!" There are times when we just need to accept things as they are, but to brush off everything as saying, "They are what they are" is incompetent. There are things we can change...and there's things we can't change.
09-27-2015, 07:06 AM   #7
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Guilty... If people hate me for it, it is what it is

09-27-2015, 07:13 AM - 1 Like   #8

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..but.. you're just sayin'.
09-27-2015, 07:15 AM   #9
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When there are multiple ways to get something done, and the information being discussed is irrelevant to the bosses way, "it is what it is" is a way of cutting off further discussion. As guy who's been both an employee and a mid-management and still works in leadership positions guiding very smart people on photography trips, there are times when what is being discussed is totally irrelevant to the problem at hand, sometimes you need to grab people, slap them upside the head, and tell them to snap out of it. "It is what it is" is a phrase that accomplishes that.

It could also be used by an incompetent person to impose their will, and hide their lack of grasp of the situation rather than understand the alternatives, but on the shop floor, you have to have a way of saying.." I know how to get this done, what I need you to do is do what I tell you whether it makes sense to you or not, and if you do that, I know I can pay you at the end of the week." In a perfect world, every situation would be a teaching situation, in the real world, we come up with systems that make sure the money to pay the employees is in the bank at the end of the week, and mid level managers usually do not have the right to mess with that. It's just not their money to mess with.

So like anything "it is what it is" is just a tool provided by the language to say what you have to say. What is to like or not like? IF you know a person that abuses it, it's the person, not the phrase. I use the phrase maybe twice a year. And when I do, I appreciate it.
09-27-2015, 02:05 PM   #10

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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
"it is what it is" is a way of cutting off further discussion

I've worked both sides of the mgmnt. desk as well, and I can tell you using these phrases for the purpose you describe is a perfect way to build a disgruntled work force. Cutting off the conversation because YOU think it's irrelevant is totally dismissive of the associate you're talking to and will certainly cause you to lose the respect of those workers. If an associate raises an issue, it's because it's important to THEM at that time. Would you treat your child in the same manner? Lack of communication is perhaps the biggest reason for a lack of respect from your work force.

I realize a mgr. must look at the "big picture", and associates are really focused on only their particular role, but a manager must manage people as well as the work flow. It only takes a minute or so to explain why things are the way they are, rather than just blowing people off. That's what separates a good manager from a bad one.
09-27-2015, 03:34 PM   #11
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I hear it a lot lately too. When I do hear it, it usually makes no sense whatsoever in the context of the conversation, much like a Yogiism.
What the <bleep> is that?
It is what it is.
09-27-2015, 11:19 PM   #12
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Yep, I hate it too. Lazy English for many.
09-28-2015, 03:26 AM   #13
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Well, people use it in situations where things could be better but they don't want make the effort to improve them. On the other hand, when I hear people complaining that Indiana winters are too cold or that there is too much humidity or my kids don't like spaghetti, there isn't much to do about it and a phrase like "It is what it is," certainly does seem to apply.
09-28-2015, 05:07 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Tom S. Quote
Then of course there are the ones we can't print here.
Those are the only ones Otis uses. ........I hear them every day. Disgusting little rodent.

09-28-2015, 05:32 AM   #15
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I hate it when people add "you know?" in the middle of their speech as if asking a question but keep going with their statement, you know?

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