Sainsbury is the latest casualty. Genesis, its grandly named job-shedding initiative was quickly dubbed Exodus. Now I hear it has been downgraded even further, to Genocide.
The beancounters at Price Waterhouse have found a way to avoid this problem. It has given one of its initiatives a stupid name right at the outset. Its campaign to transform the firm into a flexible 1990s outfit is called Making the Elephant Dance, which is not, PW tells me, a play on the Rosabeth Moss Kanter management tome, When Giants Learn to Dance.
'It just evolved really,' says one abacus wielder. 'Now it has really caught on. Some of our partners now buy ties with elephants on and everything.' Golly. And there I was thinking accountants were boring.