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Time to do the needful???

indian flagI recently had a really interesting conversation with a friend of mine whose company outsources a lot of its function to India. He explained to me a few of the language difficulties that he had had to learn to deal with.  I thought I would share them with you: If you are told, “You can have that in some time.” It actually means that it will be arriving imminently and is not a sort of open ended and no specific comment that the language suggests. If you are told, “I will do the needful.”  Then expect the speaker to do what is necessary. Be careful when offering suggestions and using a phrase like,” I would do this …”, this could easily be interpreted as meaning that you will actually be doing it yourself and all work at the other end will therefore stop. In addition there is the obvious advice to be careful in such situations to avoid all idioms. I am thinking of examples such as ; If I were you … If I was in your shoes … The advice is to spell everything out clearly and to avoid contracting your language. For example say “it is” rather than “it’s”.