The colleagues in my office often send email starting with "Please kindly". Are the two phrases a bit redundant?
Strictly speaking, "please" and "kindly" do serve separate purposes. I can demand that you kindly do a certain task:
Kindly apologize to your mother
The intent is to dictate how you should apologize. Prepending "please" is me politely asking you to do something:
Please apologize to your mother
Combining them signifies that I am being polite and you should be polite:
Please kindly apologize to your mother
In the context of office chatter, I would interpret the original intent of the phrase to mean, "I am asking nicely; don't give me attitude." As it is now bordering on a cliché, I highly doubt anyone is putting much thought into the phrase or its meaning and they are simply being polite.
Both the adverbs are used in polite requests, and one of the meanings of kindly is please.
In a sentence like "please kindly send me a copy of your paperwork," please and kindly are redundant.
In a sentence like "will you kindly sign the enclosed copy of this letter," kindly is often used ironically.