Thought 4 the day

Wednesday, 18 April 2007

Increase Your Watercooler Power

Ever read Per pro at the bottom of a letter or memo?

As I'm sure you know, you get this when someone has signed the letter on someone's behalf. But read on - this does get more interesting. And quite funny too.

It's an abbreviation of the Latin phrase per procurationem.

Keep going - that wasn't the funny bit.

Literally, it means 'by proxy', but in the world of modern business it has come to have several other subtle meanings:

1 - The boss is away - at last - and although I'm only his deputy, I'm going to have some fun throwing my weight around, settling old scores, empire building and generally making everyone else's lives a complete misery.

2 - I want to tell you something, but you're not important enough for me to bother signing this letter myself so I got my over-keen deputy to do it.

3 - This letter contains something contentious and it could spark a major row, so I'd like to distance myself from it, cover my back and let my dumb deputy take the fall if things go wrong.

4 - A particularly unpleasant combination of all of the above.

More Iywp next week.

If you're a Johny come lately, why not use the link in the box at the top of this page to find the whole series?

T4td will be back tomorrow with what you could call 'Normal Thursday', but we'd rather you didn't.

Thinking outside the box from the inside.

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