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The second sentence is passive. In an active sentence, the subject performs the action of the verb. In the first sentence, the subject the golfer performs the action hit the ball. Yes, you need to be authentic and to let your voice shine through in your writing. Chances are, you need your reader to do something: call you back, give you more information, confirm their presence at a meeting, and so on. Spell it out, and be specific. For example:. Pro Tip : Keep in mind that if you need immediate action on something, talk to the recipient in person.

Get up from your desk and go to their office, or call them on the phone. Writing is an important medium, but nothing beats an in-person conversation when you need to get something done. To do this, headlines need to be short, direct, powerful, and specific.

Learn to write effective business correspondence

The first subject line is vague and leaves a lot of questions unanswered. Which Monday meeting? What is the meeting about? Do I even need to know about this meeting? The second subject line is much more specific, and thus more likely to be opened and read quickly. It communicates which meeting the author is talking about, when it is, and what you might need when attending this particular meeting.

Never leave your email subject line blank. Email filters often categorize blank subject lines as spam, so fill it out to avoid having your email missed. This saves your reader time because they can quickly reply without having to read more superfluous text. Make sure your recipients know what EOM means before using this technique.

Keep your emails focused on one specific point or idea whenever possible. If you need to address another topic, write a separate email. It also helps them organize their emails more efficiently and find archived emails faster. Thanks for all your work on the quarterly reports last week. You did a nice job! If so, could you please bring a copy of your initial quarterly report draft? Also, did you ever touch base with Al Thompson in Syracuse? He had some complaints about his last shipment and we need to make sure those are addressed. Let me know how this turns out. Last, he has to address those customer complaints and tell Jim what happened.

The email has some important reminders in it, and Steve might want to save it. Do your readers a favor and make things as easy as possible for them. Keep it simple with one topic per email. Never use email to deliver bad news. If you need to lay off someone on your team, or provide feedback that will sound less than rosy, do it in person. In person, you can communicate with compassion and empathy, and you can use your body language and vocal tone to further convey your sincerity and intentions.

Grammar and spelling mistakes are embarrassing, and they hurt your credibility.

The Value of Solid Writing Skills

And, whenever possible, put it away and read it again a few hours or a few days later. Coaching, Tutoring, and Training from Dr. Robert Hogan. He has been a professor of business report writing and communications at Illinois State University, the University of Pittsburgh, and Allegheny County Community College. Hogan is the director of the Business Writing Center. He is the author of most of the training materials in the 45 courses offered by the Business Writing Center. As a result, he selects the training from the courses that will be most beneficial for you.

As you learn with Dr. Hogan, you can expect the following:. You will be able to contact Dr.

10 tips for effective business writing

Hogan by email or phone at any time to ask questions about your business writing needs. The Business Writing Essentials course teaches the essential best practices business people are using today to write clear, effective, professional business documents, including e-mail, memos, letters, reports, and other documents. It teaches a structured approach to writing that makes writing easier and guides readers through the content. Graduates report that they receive high praise for their writing, and other employees begin to copy their style.

The instructor evaluates three writing examinations. As with all other Business Writing Center courses, you have unlimited access to the instructor to ask questions during the course. The instructor evaluates the competency examinations and coaches you through learning skills. The Business Writing Skills course teaches the best practices business people must know to be able to write clear, effective, professional business documents, including e-mail, memos, letters, and reports.

The course contains 12 practice activities and four competency examinations. The online lessons contain clear explanations and many examples. You go at your own pace and submit assignments when you are ready. The instructor evaluates the activities and examinations, comments on skills learned and skills that still need polish, coaches you through learning the skills, and certifies your competence.

You receive a graduation certificate for framing at the end of the course. Follow email protocol. Set goals. Choose strategies based on the goals and readers. Prepare the Information. Prepare notes for your email, memo, letter, or report. Organize the Writing. Have an organizational pattern in mind.

Use special organizational patterns for some messages. Introduce the Content. For emails and memos, always write a clear, meaningful subject line. Write a clear, complete introduction. For emails, letters, and memos, write a cordial beginning or buffer.

10 tips for effective business writing |

State the contents. For reports, state conclusions and recommendations in the introduction. Write a Clear Document. Write the explanations in blocks. Check each block for focus. Check each block for completeness. Use headings to open blocks. Create lists. Write Clear, Complete Explanations. For reports, write clear, complete, relevant explanations. What do they want?

How can you effectively reach out to them? Good business writing is a skill that should be mastered in all its forms: memorandums, e-mails, marketing campaigns, customer service information, business plans, employee negotiations, and more. If you are in business, you already know that you spend the better part of your day communicating with people through talking, writing, and negotiating. While technology advances have allowed us to communicate the written word to employees and customers in minutes, most people have not updated their writing skills to keep pace with this near-instantaneous communication.

Communication as we knew it only five, ten, or twenty years ago has been swept away with the tide of technology. Everything is sleeker and faster. The success of an individual's career, as well as the fortunes of any business, may depend on these vital writing skills.

No matter what business you are in, poor written communication is something that can sabotage your success. Yes, we live in a world dominated by computers and telephones; but even today, writing is still one of the most crucial ways to effectively communicate with another person. Every day at work, you write numerous e-mails, you draft business plans and letters, you compose sales letters to your customers, and you create business proposals. What you write is probably as important as how you write it. Your written communication can work wonders for your company and your success, or it can lead to your downfall.

When you go to an important meeting or an interview, you make sure that you are prepared. You dress with care, trying to make an impeccable impression on the people you are about to meet. Whether right or wrong, your appearance can make a world of difference in how other people view you. The same holds true for business writing. Have you ever taken a look at how your written communication appears to other people? Your writing makes the same kind of impression as your clothes do. It needs to convey that you are an intelligent and skilled person who is a thorough professional.

However, if your business writing is riddled with errors and mistakes, rest assured that all notions of your professionalism will quickly fade from your audience's mind.

Executive Communication & Business Writing

If your business writing is rich in content but fails to involve the reader, is not written well, or does not convey your intended message, you have failed in your business communication. Similarly, if your business writing is accurate and professional but lacks content, clarity, and facts, then you have also missed the communication objective.

First, Know Your Audience

If you understand and follow these rules, you will develop an unbeatable edge in your business communications. Not only should you be clear about the message you want to convey but also ensure that it is completely understood by your audience. Who is the reader? What action do I want the reader to take after reading this document? These questions will help you focus on your content and avoid straying from the point. Ensure that your documents are short and sweet. Wordy business correspondence is not only annoying and distracting, but time-consuming for both the writer and reader.

Remember, the reader is a professional like you, who has a busy day ahead, so do not waste their time. Keep your content short and simple. If a business letter has spelling mistakes, typos, grammatical errors, and punctuation problems, the impression one gets is that the writer is incompetent and unprofessional. So make sure you review and revise your work before sending it out.

You should never come across as being rude or angry. Similarly, racist, sexist and derogatory remarks must be strictly avoided in all business writing. Also, while writing a business letter, make sure that the spelling of the name and title of the receiver is correct.

To keep your audience from being alienated, keep your tone crisp and chatty. Ultimately, your aim is to convince the reader to do something. So, present your case, support it with reason, and request an action. Go back and review those three questions you asked initially. If you are satisfied that you have covered all of them, go ahead and send out your e-mail or letter.

There is little or no editing and the sentences can stretch on for miles. They believe that by using such terms, their writing looks professional. However, such words have the opposite effect and tend to alienate the reader. The use of commas, periods, colons, semicolons, and quotation marks is often wrong. Pay close attention to grammar. If you are not sure, find help. Spelling mistakes. Inattention to detail and lack of revision ends up in a document riddled with spelling mistakes; this lends an unprofessional impression to your writing.

There is absolutely no excuse for spelling mistakes with the spelling check programs available. Business writing should be crisp and simple. It has to sound professional and like a normal one-on-one conversation. Be clear and specific in your message, and readers will understand the action you will take. Use a polite and warm tone, use neutral terms, and avoid reference to race, sex, and class.

Cross-check all the information you provide in your business writing to ensure accuracy. However, it never hurts to slow down and take time to review what your business communication is actually saying. Make sure your writing comes across as well-thought-out, with correct information, and is written in a warm and professional tone. Nothing can undermine a promising career in business like poor written communication skills can.

And while many people don't like to write, the ability to communicate ideas in writing is an absolute necessity in the business world. From memos to e-mails to white papers, as you make your way up the corporate ladder, writing becomes an increasingly large and important part of your job. As you progress through the eight lessons in this course, you will learn what makes good and bad writing, how to craft an understandable message, the basics of grammar and punctuation, how to draft a perfect e-mail, and much more!

With no physical classes to attend and no additional materials to buy, this course is ideal for the busy professional looking to grow his or her career!