Whilst many people use email most people don’t know all of it’s functions and exactly what they mean. Knowing how to properly use email can help you look like you know what you are doing. One of the things I get asked about regularly is CC and BCC.
CC, is courtesy copy or carbon copy. When you send someone an email you can CC one or more other people in on the email. (The CC is usually found below the TO line when writing an email). For those receiving the CC of an email, the email is for their information only. You are not expecting them to act on or reply to the email. This also means that if you are CC’ed on an email it is likely that the sender is not expecting a reply.
However having said all of this it is always better to ask if you aren’t sure what someone wants. You never look like an idiot double checking something but you can look like an idiot if you don’t.
BCC = Blind courtesy copy or carbon copy. When you BCC someone in on an email the person receiving the email will not know that other people has also received the email. This can be useful if you do not want the receiver of the email to know other people have also received this email. BCC is often used when the content of the email is sensitive.
When I first started working in an office, my manager at the time insisted that I BCC her on all my emails. Her arguement was that as I was new to the office environment she wanted to help me develop my professional writing style. I think the reality was she wanted to make sure I didn’t say anything stupid and if I did she could step in quickly to fix it. I’m pleased to say that I don’t think she ever needed to step in.