I get feisty when i receive an email mentioned in it the word ‘ASAP’, expecting me to interrupt what I am doing, shuffle my priorities, and act with a sense of urgency. Thankfully, over the years, I learnt to remain cool and not stress (or even act) anymore when I get the word ASAP.
I bet only few who use it know what it really means. ASAP stands for ‘As Soon As Possible’. It does not mean ‘urgent’, or ‘immediately’, or ‘now’. Not even when it is commonly written in capital letter. As soon as possible (ASAP) simply means, ‘I know you are busy, so as soon as you are ready, answer my request’.
Besides, how often are things really urgent in a business to deserve acting with stress and urgency. And by urgent I mean, if we don’t act now, something awful and disastrous might happen. In fact, when things are really that urgent, is written communication the best form to deliver the message?
I think that, most often, when some employee with a certain level of authority uses the word ASAP, it is just a selfish way to get things done by implying that ‘my request is more important than what you are busy doing now, so interrupt your work and do what I ask you’ and consequently impose stress and negative vibes on the receiver.