The world of EMAIL has lots of interesting acronyms. Two of which are FYI & BCC. Google provided me the theoretical knowledge about this, but my practical knowledge must be attributed to the corporate world.
I was a naïve trainee then, with a unusual eagerness & enthusiasm of a trainee, waiting for a perfect time to prove myself to my bosses. I was assigned a work that had to be completed on the same day and sent for review to an onsite jargon. This onsite guy, with the experience of almost twice my age, is hypersensitive towards specimens (especially Indians) who send their research details to his review. I was warned about his cynicism and requested not to make mistakes on my research.
I, being a overenthusiastic then, drafted a big email with all the research details. I spent additional 60 minutes to adorn the email with the format options like underline, italics, bullets, bold, highlight..etc, just to help the old chap to understand my thinking process much better. Embellishing email is an art which initially emerged from underlining twice the each headings & subheadings with color pens & sketches, in the midterm test papers of good-old-school-days. Thus I prepared a very detailed and decorative email, copied my project manager (PM), team leader, mentor and many others in the CC list and sent off.
Next day I received a one word reply from him.
I was mildly scared which is perfectly normal for any trainee to do so. Hopelessness swallowed me but only for few minutes. Even though I was not sure what was “Wrong” I was still glad admiring this fellow’s decency & gentlemenness. Because the mail was addressed only to me and no one else is copied, which means at least I can hide this whole tragedy from my PM. In the urge to cover up this whole issue before any one find it out , I drafted a reply mail apologizing the mistake which I hadn’t yet found .I was about to hit the “send” button, suddenly my PM popped out before me.
He politely asked me, why was it wrong?
Now I am mildly confused. Is he asking about that email? How did he know?
PM continued, didn’t I tell you yesterday to be careful while sending your work to onsite?
I was silent
PM continued, Why didn’t you forward this email to me, your team leader, mentor…etc?
I was still silent
Finally he asked me not to repeat this in future and went off.
After he disappeared, I discussed this whole incident in detail with one of my colleague and asked how did the PM know about this. she questioned me, for what do you think BCC exists? Now I understood the guy’s cynicism but to confirm I asked her, Do you mean that old boy addressed me, this insulting email, in the “T0 list” and secretly copied others in the BCC list ? In Tamil don’t we call this as Vathi vaithal, mooti vaithal etc etc ….She nodded.
I requested her to clarify me one more thing: Why he (PM) wants me to forward this email? There is nothing interesting in it except the insulting word “WRONG”. She told me, it is our team protocol for trainees to forward all the work related emails they receive, to their PM,TL and other seniors with the tag word “FYI”.
Thus FYI in the corporate dictionary means, I have been insulted and injured by so and so “OR” I have been praised by so and so. Hence take care of my appraisal accordingly.