Hello everyone! We all have seen the drama Alpha Bravo Charlie but I get surprised when I hear that many people around haven’t heard of the Phonetic Alphabets. Here is another effort to organize our lives just a little bit more.
Whenever we are talking to someone on the phone and we need to tell them important details like our address, email address or pass-code, it is vital to get the exact details across without the fear of miscommunication.This is why Phonetical Alphabets came into being. It is very important for all of us to remember these like the back of our hands.
The NATO Phonetic Alphabet is a widely used radio-telephonic spelling alphabet. Critical combinations of letters and alphabets can be pronounced and understood by people who exchange voice messages by radio or telephone regardless of language barriers or the quality of communication channel. They can even be used in face-to-face conversations specially in noisy scenarios.
I am embarrassed to admit I didn’t know these before I worked in a call center in London. That’s when I learned these by heart and life has been much easier and more organized. It is vital for everyone to learn these by heart as the listener needs to know these too.
Just a very simple explanation for those who don’t have an idea. If someone asks an email address on the phone. One replies W for Whiskey
, I for India, N for November
and K for Kilo
at hotmail.com. It’s much more assuring than saying [email protected]
. Someone could mishear it as link, sink or blink. Phonetic alphabet is used to minimize errors in communication. We hear a lot of people making up their own phonetic alphabet like E for Elephant, S for Sugar. Well, its not the best thing to do.
This reminds me of a funny incident when I worked for Davenport Black Limited in London. A Polish customer was on the phone with me. We both couldn’t understand each other at all. Suddenly he said ‘Ha’ for Jalapeno. I almost burst into laughter. Wow! Out of all the words to avoid miscommunication, this was the best. He didn’t understand phonetic alphabets at all which completely wrecked up our whole conversation. But I wish I was given an audio copy of that conversation. It was hilarious.
How many of you knew the phonetic alphabets before reading this? Would love to know. Hope this helps.