In the past, I’ve discussed the basics of business writing skills and their development [add above link here], which I’ve defined as any written form of professional communication. I’ve advised using the active voice, writing out your points in a natural order (and using a well-defined outline to guide you!), and making use of headings for maximum clarity. How can you improve your business writing beyond this? Consider the following:
Clear communication is vital to business writing. There are several ways which you can boost clarity of thought in your writing. First, avoid using overly technical writing that relies heavily on industry specific vocabulary. Second, avoid verbosity. If you can say what you mean in three words, then don’t use five. Third, try to state your purpose within the first 150 words to save your reader time in grasping the content.
To or about whom are you writing to? Clients, customers, a work colleague, your boss’s boss, or a potential employer? Any of these designations may change the tone of your writing and the content. By identifying your audience from the get-go, you will gain direction that will guide you throughout the process.
This will also guide what information you give and knowing what you want your audience to do once they’ve read your piece. Do you want to notify them of something? Ask them to contact you? Schedule a meeting? Buy a new product or service? Read more about this below.
Information is at a premium
The point of business writing is to communicate information, so that you elicit a desired response. You are sharing valuable information from your brain to others, information that should lead to specific actions and outcomes…so long as you made it clear what and how to respond. Curating your information so that it’s digestible, accurate, and above all relevant is an absolute must for successful business writing practices.
For more information on business writing practices, read this blog post.
Do you find the thought of business writing overwhelming? Schedule a consultation with me to discuss strategies and processes for success!