Quick hit: Confusion over industry terminology

I had an interesting conversation with a colleague earlier today. We were talking about a feature set for a new product that we have due out later this year. Some of the language being used to describe a certain feature, and how it would be used, was causing quite a bit of confusion for me. So I tried to clarify things a bit. After a brief email exchange it turned out that I knew exactly what he was talking about; healthcare and especially pharmacy simply use different words to describe the process.

I recommended that we use the pharmacy specific lingo, but I was told no because it wasn’t the industry standard. I found that quite interesting because we build products for pharmacy, i.e. that is the industry we’re in. However, the terminology used for this particular process is different outside the pharmacy world. Still with me? Good.

So, the question becomes does one conform to the terminology in the market segment you’re in, i.e. pharmacy, or do you ignore the pharmacy terminology and go with the “standard”? My gut reaction would be to go with the standard – after all I preach standardization all the time – however, if one does that you end up talking to pharmacy people that have no idea what you mean. You know, everyone has that deer in the headlights look with everyone standing around wondering what the heck is going on. And to top it off, no one asks for clarification because they’re afraid it might make them look stupid. We’ve all been there. I know I have.

So, based on what I just said above I think you have to conform to the industry you’re in. In other words, use the pharmacy terminology, standard or not.

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