Managertoday 經理人

Please掛嘴邊,不代表「有禮貌」!這樣錯用會超失禮

2019-11-23 06:37:17
Managertoday
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很多人都以為"please"和"thank you"是最有禮貌的字眼,只要說了就沒錯。其實錯了!

很多人都以為"please"和"thank you"是最有禮貌的字眼,只要說了就沒錯。其實錯了!

Sally臨時想調一份資料出來,但還不熟悉公司系統,於是請資深的同事協助,她說了

“Please send me the background file on the new customer. Thank you.”(請把新客戶的背景資料寄給我。謝謝!)

Sally很敏感地察覺資深的同事有些不悅,不是都講了please跟thank you?敞開溝通之後,才發現,原來禮貌不禮貌和Please這字的「位置」大有關係。

Please雖然是英文裡面表達客氣的說法,但是放在一個句子的開頭,卻是一種命令的口氣,像是主管在對下屬說:「請你五點前將報表寄出!」 這裡的請,就沒有想像中那麼客氣了吧。Please 若放在句首,給人一種急迫、甚至含有命令的口氣,在英文裡想請別人協助做什麼事、詢問,請記得把please放在最後說,把please在句首,甚至會有頤指氣使的感覺。

先比較以下兩組句子:
可以再做一次嗎?
Could you do that again, please?(最客氣)
Could you please do that again? (還算客氣)
Please could you do that again?(不客氣,有命令的意味)

從這裡就可以知道please的客氣程度是:句首(命令)>句中(還算客氣)>句尾(非常客氣)

職場上,please放後面,避免口氣太直接

特別是下屬對老闆想要要求、詢問什麼事,請記得把please放在最後面,才是最保險的方式:

我今天可以提早離開嗎?
(O) May I leave early today, please?
(X) Please may I leave early today?

教室裡,please可放前面,讓指令明確

Please open your book. (=Open your book, please.)請打開書。
Please submit your report before or by Monday. 請在周一前交報告。

生活中,please表達接受幫助和請求

Would you like a cup of coffee? Yes, please. 要不要來一杯咖啡。好啊!
May I help you? Yes, please. I’d like to… 需要幫忙嗎?好啊,我想要……

Could you give me a hand, please? 可以幫我忙嗎?
May I use your pen, please? 我可以用你的筆嗎?

真正要表達客氣和禮貌,也不定定要用please,用could跟would一樣可以表達請求:

Could you possibly send me the file? 可以寄檔案給我嗎?
Would you mind sending me the file? 
Would you be able to send me the file? 
Could I have it within ten minutes please? 我可以10分鐘內收到檔案嗎?

(本文出自「世界公民文化中心」,熟到老外都覺得你英文好,加入量身訂做的1on1 program)

圖片來源 / Klean Denmark via flickr, CC licensed