All about ASAP, FYI and FYA
ONE day a colleague turned to me and asked: “What is FYI?”
“For your information.”
“What is FYA?”
“For your action.”
“What is WRT?“
“With reference to …”
Before the conversation got any longer, I quickly looked up a website with acronyms used in business communications and emailed it to him.
This conversation made me realize that the full meaning of many acronyms and abbreviations may not be immediately apparent to many people, both students and working adults.
To begin with, an acronym is a word created from the combination of the initial letters of each word. For example, by your action.
An abbreviation is a word abbreviated from its original form. For example, “Attn.” is an abbreviation of the word “attention” to convey the meaning “for the attention of”.
In general, a period is used for abbreviations where the last letter of the word and the abbreviation are not the same. For example, “Co.” (Company) needs a period, but “Ltd” (Limited) does not. Acronyms do not need punctuation marks.
Here are some short forms often used in business communication, such as emails, faxes, and letters:
alias. – also know as
On Monday morning, Kay El, also known as The Boss, came in happy and greeted her assistant, Pee Jay.
approx. – approximately
Checking his email, Pee Jay read: “Today is the boss’s birthday. Can everyone quietly go to the cafeteria in about 15 minutes?”
As soon as possible – as soon as possible
Pee Jay opened his calendar and jotted down some of the urgent items on his to-do list as soon as possible.
Attn. – for the attention of
Leafing through the stack of mail to be sent, Pee Jay asked his boss, “Who should I address the check to for the annual report?”
Her boss replied, “Just write ‘Attention: Ms. Christine Jalleh’. She will know what to do with it.”
Bcc. – blind copy or blind copy a. In this case, the carbon copy is sent to an email recipient whose email address is not visible to cc recipients or other Bcc recipients.
“By the way, I think it’s best if I e-mail Brown. We don’t want him to think I’m supervising him for this project.”
DC. – carbon copy or copy to
“But I would like you to copy me on Mr. Green’s email, as I have not yet introduced them both.”
co – in charge of, used when sending a document to A, who will receive it on behalf of B because B is out of the office.
“Boss, I think Christine is back in China this week. Would it be okay if I sent you the check payable by your assistant? I will still write her name at the top with c / o Ah Sis Tern underneath.”
COD – Cash on delivery, when a person makes the payment for the purchase of an item after it has been delivered.
“I’m also sending the check for the set of Business English reference books that we bought COD on eBay.”
e.g. – exempli gratia (for example)
Pee Jay replied to the email: “Hi everyone. Please remember the boss doesn’t like surprises, for example everyone yells ‘Surprise!’ in the cafeteria. “
et al. – et alii (and others). Typically used to list co-authors after the lead author in a bibliography, this form is now popularly used to address people other than the recipient in emails.
He received a new email saying: “Dear Pee Jay et al., You reminded me that the boss does NOT like surprises …”
etc. – etc. (and so on OR and so on)
This means that we won’t be able to collectively catch her jumping out of the cafeteria doors as we had planned, etc.
Exc. – except
“Can everyone, Exc. Pee Jay, be in the cafeteria in 5 minutes? We need to find a surprise without the element of surprise. Thanks!”
FYI – for your information
Her boss’s voice brought the young assistant to the present, “Pee Jay, I’m forwarding all these emails to you, FYI, okay?”
FYA – for your action
“Please note that some of these emails are FYA …”
that is to say. – id is (that is)
After recognizing his supervisor, Pee Jay decided to help his colleagues, writing, “He’s in a good mood today, that is, we won a new account and completed an important project.”
K – thousands, for example 450K = 450,000
“Just to give you an idea of her mood, it’s a 450K advance for the first quarter …”
Pennsylvania – personal assistant
The immediate response to Pee Jay’s email read, “Thanks for the tip, Pee Jay, you are the best personal assistant!”
Pennsylvania – per year (per year)
Pee Jay smiled and replied, “Haha, there’s a reason I’m getting paid RM65K for.”
pages – by professional (used when signing a document on behalf of someone)
Looking back at his paperwork, Pee Jay signed some invoices on behalf of his boss, inserting pp just before his signature.
Pto. – please turn, used at the end of a page to indicate that there is continuity in the text.
“By the way, remember to write Pto. On the first page of the proposal you are submitting. The last time we sent it to you, you forgot to read the following pages,” interjected Kay El.
for example. – videlicet, namely
He got up and left a note on Pee Jay’s workstation before leaving. Scribbled on it was: “Can I pass you my slice of birthday cake after I cut it? I really don’t need a lot of carbs, that is, refined flour, at my age.” The note ended with a wink.
Readers can go to http://www.acronymfinder.com/ to look up the meaning of more than 4 million acronyms and abbreviations. This online dictionary also allows users to filter their search based on categories such as information technology (IT), military and government, business and finance, science and medicine, organizations and schools, jargon, and pop culture.