Jul
18

Please Advise

 General
 
People have many unconscious habits in their business writing? Last week I noticed many people in the course of doing support, an unconscious habit among requests providing only a vague reference, as to their issue followed by: "Please advise."
 
They used "Please advise" in their opening sentences, their closing sentences, and sometimes in the middle!
I absolutely hate this phrase. It is amazing to me how many people over use it. It often seems to be a passive aggresive way to drop the ball in your lap.
How about you come out and ask for help? Or state what your real question is. Often people expect you to somehow figure out their problem for them.
 
Some people even have no clue which is even correct, when to use advise and advice.
 
"Please advise us" is the correct one For your information,"advice" is a noun whereas "advise" is a verb
 
If you want to use "advice", you have to say like
"Please give advice" because in this sentence it is used as noun.
 
Advice : An opinion as to a decision or course of action
Advise : To offer advice

A friend is a web developer for a small company and does alot support too. Answering customer emails about problems with the website that often end in "please advise". This drives many people nuts how about I respond with "I advise you step away from the computer!". Is it too hard to ask a direct question?
 
For example, "Can't log on. Please advise."
 
Now, this might work well in the legal world where people use words like 'heretofore' and 'to wit'. However, in general use, I group it with "as to" and I think it makes you sound like a bit pompous. Not to mention in support it provides the person trying to help no useful information to assist you.
 
Basically, there is no need (it's not a telegram and they don't charge by the word), it's borderline rude (what about thanks or sincerely?), and it doesn't make you sound more intelligent. Rather it is more like Tennis or Volleyball like now the ball is in your court.
 
If the support request is that you cannot logon to email, or FTP, or even the Control Panel application perhaps say which you are having the problem with and perhaps share even the URL and logon and password you are attempting the use.
 
You might find that the results of providing some details will mean alot fewer emails at the end of the day unless you have a support agent who happens to be clairvioent.