If I started talking about potting down the mic, then throwing to Sat 1 (live radio talk), it would probably sound like gobbledygook. I might come across as snooty or out of touch. Plus, what’s the point of saying anything at all if it doesn’t convey an idea?

Similarly, in an interview, you don’t want to alienate people by using incomprehensible lingo. Being able to translate something specialized into conversational language requires real brains and a deep understanding of your subject. The truth: it is easier to rely on jargon.

Don’t. Respect your audience.

This may require some prep work. As you think about what you want your audience to know, mull over how you would explain it to someone smart who has never heard of the subject before. For example, my kids’ babysitter can understand anything, but hasn’t learned any argot yet. Come up with someone like that in your life, and consider ahead of time how you would talk about your topic with him or her.

When you are the subject of an interview, the audience understands that you’re there because you know something outside the ordinary. Generally, there’s a baseline assumption that you are an expert. This is awesome, and you earned it. But more to the point, it means there is nothing to prove.

So do everyone a favor and say something that makes sense.

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