Presentation on theme: "Course : BA1105 Effective writing Skills BBA 1. To grasp an understanding on the seven essentials of business writing. Know how to construct effective."— Presentation transcript:
Course : BA1105 Effective writing Skills BBA 1
To grasp an understanding on the seven essentials of business writing. Know how to construct effective sentences by ensuring that the message has to be complete, concise, concrete, clear, considerate, courteous and correct. Will thoroughly understand the concept of Adaptation.
Refers to the quantum of information needed for making a message complete (Kaul,). Your business message is ‘complete’ when it contains all facts that the reader or the listener needs for the reaction you desire. For a message to be complete there are three essential guidelines: 1. Answer all questions asked 2. Give something extra when desirable 3. Check for the five W’s & H
1. Answer all questions asked Answer all questions- stated and implied ‘Omissions cast suspicions’ e.g. A prospective customer who is given incomplete reply about the product may think that the weak areas are being concealed on purpose. Effective way of Answering questions (numbered, listed, bullet form)
2. Give something extra when desirable Sometimes you must do more than answer the customers’ specific questions. This will result in facilitating the customer more and hence make them feel that their association is valued by your Company. 3. Check for the five W’s (Who, What, Where, When and Why) and one other essential How! Useful when writing requests, announcements, or other informative messages.
Examples: There will be a Review Meeting held on Friday 25 th January in the morning, therefore kindly submit your individual sales reports to Mr. Jack soon. There will be a Review Meeting held on Friday 25 th January at 10:00am, therefore kindly submit your individual sales reports to Mr. Jack latest by 3:00pm tomorrow. There will be a Review Meeting held on Friday 25 th January at 10:00am in the boardroom on 1 st floor. The meeting will be chaired by Mr. Richard Murray to review and discuss with you on last month’s sales leads, therefore kindly submit your individual sales reports to Mr. Jack latest by 3:00pm tomorrow.
Eliminate wordy expressions Include only relevant statements Be focused Prune and avoid long explanations Avoid gushing politeness Avoid unnecessary repetition Use short form the second time Use Pronouns
Saying what you have to say in the fewest possible words. Conciseness in a message can be developed by first collating all information and then determining its relevance for the receiver. Eliminate wordy expressions e.g. Allow me to say how helpful your last response was. Your last response was quite helpful. Include only relevant statements e.g. We hereby wish to let you know that we fully appreciate the confidence you have reposed in us. We appreciate your confidence in us.
Avoid unnecessary repetition e.g. Hi Stephen I wanted to discuss with you about the marketing campaign we kind of sketched out last week. I really think that our target market is definitely going to want to see the company's benevolent efforts. I think that could make a major impact, and it would stay in their minds longer than a sales pitch. For instance, if we talk about the company's efforts to become sustainable, as well as the charity work we're doing in local schools, then the people that we want to attract are going to remember our message longer. The impact will just be greater. Hi Stephen I wanted to discuss the marketing campaign that we analysed last Tuesday. Our target market will want to know about the company's benevolent efforts, especially our goals to become sustainable and help local schools. This would make a far greater impact, and it would stay in their minds longer than a traditional sales pitch.
Focus on YOU instead of “I” or “we”. Show reader benefit and interest. Emphasize positive and pleasant Apply integrity and ethics.
Consideration in communication is showing respect to the sentiments, ideas, notions, concepts and values of the receiver. You prepare every message with the recipient in mind and try to put yourself in his or her place. Four specific ways you can indicate you are considerate: Focus on ‘you’ instead of ‘I’ and ‘we’ SZABIST: Discover Yourself e.g. May I take this opportunity to express my thanks for the account you recently opened with our store. We are pleased to furnish a wide variety of products for the home or individual customers. Thank you for the account you recently opened at Bekinson’s. Serving you with your needs for clothing and home furnishings is a pleasure.
In two kinds of situations it is not advisable to use ‘You’ When the reader has made a mistake When the reader has expressed an opinion different from your own e.g. You failed to attach a price list to your offer The price list was not attached to your offer Show reader benefit or interest in reader Even a simple request gets better response when a reader-benefit aspect accompanies it. e.g. A company trying to update its records wrote to all the customers saying that it requires them to fill in their personal information in the enclosed form and to return it back in the prepaid envelope. And they FAILED as only 3% forms came back! Why?
Emphasize the Positive, Pleasant Facts Stressing what can be done instead what cannot be done e.g. We do not refund if the returned item is soiled and unsalable. We refund when the returned item is clean and is in a resalable condition. Focusing on words that the recipient can consider favorably Words with positive connotations: benefit, cordial, happy, help, pleasure, thanks and generous Words with negative connotations: blame, complaint, failed, fault, regret, trouble
Apply Integrity and Ethics Integrity with people outside the Organization e.g. not making a false product claim to a potential customer, not misrepresenting the contents of the product. Revealing confidential data to people outside the Company. Ethical Communication within the employees Dishonesty towards employers Unfair communications with or about co-workers
Brain Storming Question! Think of an action in a business context that is not illegal but unethical. Example: A manager wrote to a customer ‘ Your request will be given our careful attention and we assure you our objective is to be fair’ The manager merely threw the case into a file and informed his secretary that he had no intention of working on it or assigning anyone else to do so. He hoped that after a long wait the customer would forget.
It means being specific, definite, and vivid rather than vague and general. Following three guidelines will help you compose concrete messages: Use specific facts and figures Put action into verbs Choose vivid, image building words. More adjectives and adverbs Concrete instead of abstract nouns
Choose Short, familiar words Construct effective sentences and paragraphs by unity of idea and sequencing. Achieve appropriate readability by using formal or informal language. Include examples, illustrations or visual aids.
Getting your message across so the receiver will understand what you are trying to convey. Clarity refers to clear projection of ideas and thoughts. Short, familiar words Avoid technical words and business jargons whenever you feel the reader might not be familiar with such words
Effective sentences and paragraphs They help to emphasize the facts and improve readability. Unity to express main ideas As you proceed from one sentence to another, the idea unfolds. Coherence for clear meanings e.g. Being and excellent lawyer, I am sure you can help us Being an excellent lawyer, you can surely help us. Emphasis for forceful, clear expression Decide what needs emphasis and then choose the sentence structure.
Including examples, illustrations and other visual aids. An effective measure to break the monotony of the message by inserting appropriate visuals, illustrations and typographical aids. e.g. charts, graphs, headings, words in bold, italics and underlined
Be sincerely tactful, thoughtful and appreciative. Omit expressions that irritate, hurt or belittle. Grant apologies graciously
Courteous communication is friendly, open and honest. It helps to strengthen business relationships. It stems from a sincere ‘you attitude’ Be sincerely tactful, thoughtful and appreciative Be respectful Use the right tone e.g. Apparently you have already forgotten what I wrote to you two weeks ago. As mentioned in my May 15 th Letter to you, ….. Thoughtfulness and Appreciation It helps in building goodwill (cordial, courteous messages of deserved congratulations for both inside and outside the organization)
Omit expressions that irritate, hurt or belittle Avoid expressions that might offend the reader. e.g. Contrary to your opinion You failed to I do not agree with you Grant and Apologize good naturedly Avoid grudging e.g. If a request has caused you extra work, you may tactfully tell the customer somewhere in the letter but not in the first paragraph!
Example: Stephen I wanted to let you know that I don't appreciate how your team always dominates the discussion at our weekly meetings. I have a lot of projects, and I really need time to get my team's progress discussed as well. So far, I haven't been able to do that. Can you make sure they make time for me and my team next week? Thanks Ann A little bit of courtesy, even in difficult situations, can go a long way. Hi Stephen I wanted to write a quick note to you and ask for a favor. During our weekly meetings, your team does an excellent job of highlighting their progress. But this uses some of the time available for my team to highlight theirs. I'd really appreciate it if you could give my team a little extra time each week to fully cover their progress reports. Thanks so much, and please let me know if there's anything I can do for you! Regards Ann
Use the right level of language Check accuracy of figures, facts and words Maintain acceptable writing mechanics Choose nondiscriminatory expressions Use Parallel Language
It comprises more than proper grammar, punctuation and spelling. In order to ensure correctness in your message: Use the right level of language e.g. Formal: Although item 21 is enumerated in this report, the writer has ascertained that it is currently not in the organization's inventory nor in the writer’s possession. Informal: Although item 21 is listed in the report, it is not in our stock now and I don’t have it either. Substandard: Irregardless of the report that item ain’t on our shelves now, and I haven’t got it either.
Check accuracy of figures, facts and words Verify all figures and facts before writing and again before signing and approving. Words often confused (e.g. anxious and eager, between involves two people or two groups and among involves three or more) Maintain acceptable writing mechanics Spelling errors Choose nondiscriminatory expressions Humanity at large (e.g. man words) Names, Occupational titles and Parallel language No Yes E.g. John Smith and Helen John Smith and Helen Brown Mrs. Brown and Smith Mrs. Brown and Mr.Smith Use of Ms. Instead of Miss and Mrs.
Parallel Language e.g. men and ladies men and women ladies and gentlemen Boys and femalesBoys and girls Males and females
Organizational Communication Barriers
The communication effected by the barriers is called miscommunication. Miscommunication is a ruined form of communication. What is to be communicated, does not get communicated and an obstructed form of the message is transmitted. Few Common Barriers to organizational communication: Multiplicity of Organizational Levels in Hierarchy Weak delivery on information The use of wrong medium Mixed Messages Language Barriers Status barriers Inattentiveness