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Chapter 6 Positive Messages. Routine Letters and Goodwill Messages (p. 142-143) – Letters are primarily external documents – Sent to: Suppliers Government.

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Presentation on theme: "Chapter 6 Positive Messages. Routine Letters and Goodwill Messages (p. 142-143) – Letters are primarily external documents – Sent to: Suppliers Government."— Presentation transcript:

1 Chapter 6 Positive Messages

2 Routine Letters and Goodwill Messages (p ) – Letters are primarily external documents – Sent to: Suppliers Government agencies Other businesses Customers (most important) – The most emphatic positions in letters are the openings and closings – Good for the following: Creating a permanent record Lending confidentiality Conveying formality and sensitivity Delivering persuasive, well-considered messages

3 Direct Requests and Response Messages (p ) Opening – Opening and closing are most emphatic positions – Ask the most important question first or express a polite command (in the form of a rhetorical question. Do not use a question mark.) Body – Explain request logically and courteously – Ask other questions if necessary – Use graphic highlighting to increase readability

4 Closing (see p. 146 for tips) – Request a specific action with an end date, if appropriate, and show appreciation – End courteously – Avoid clichéd closings Thank you for your cooperation, (trite) Thanking you in advance, (trite and presumptuous) If you have any questions, (suggests your message wasn’t clear)

5 Responding to Requests (p ) Written in response to requests for information or action May include a Subject Line below the salutation to identify previous correspondence and/or refer to the main idea (optional in a memo)

6 Opening – Deliver the most important information first – Avoid wordy, drawn-out openings – Announce good news immediately

7 Body – Check facts and figures carefully (if appropriate) – Arrange information logically – Use graphic highlighting to increase readability – Explain and clarify information – Provide additional information (if appropriate) – Build goodwill Closing – End pleasantly, and offer help to the reader – Avoid clichéd closings

8 Instruction Messages (p ) Follow direct organizational strategy Use plain English Be clear Outline steps to be taken to complete a task

9 Writing Plan (p. 148): – Subject Line: Briefly summarizes message – Opening: State main idea concisely – Body: Divide instructions into steps in the order in which they should be completed Use bulleted and/or numbered lists to help you organize Begin each list item in imperative mood (a command) – Closing: Request action, summarize message, or present closing thought (along with deadline)

10 Revising Instruction Messages (p. 149) – Watch tone Tell readers what they should do, not what they shouldn’t Do not threaten the reader Do show how the steps will help the reader – Explain tactfully reasons for the new instructions – Make sure you use imperative mood – Make sure lists are grammatically parallel, beginning with active-voice verb

11 Direct Claims and Complaints (p ) Opening – Describe clearly the desired action, especially when the remedy is obvious – Ask for a change in policy or procedure, or for an explanation if the remedy is less obvious Body – Explain the nature of the claim – Tell why the claim is justified – Provide details regarding the action requested – Avoid becoming angry or assigning blame – Include copies of all pertinent documentation – Cite names of people you spoke to and dates of calls (if appropriate)

12 Closing – End pleasantly with a goodwill statement – Include an end date if appropriate – Act promptly – Keep a copy of your letter or

13 Adjustment Letters (p ) Three goals: 1. To rectify the wrong, if one exists 2. To regain the confidence of the customer 3. To promote future business and goodwill Subject Line (optional) – Identify previous correspondence – Make a general reference to the main topic

14 Opening – Grant the request or announce adjustment immediately – Do not begin with an apology if you are complying with the request – Use positive language – Include sales promotion if appropriate Body – Explain how you are complying with the request – Try to regain the customer’s confidence – Use positive language

15 Decide Whether to Apologize (p ) – If you feel an apology is an appropriate goodwill gesture, include it. – Be brief! Apologize once, and let it go. – DO NOT admit negligence. Closing – End positively with a forward-looking thought – Express confidence in future business relations – Include a sales promotion if appropriate – Avoid referring to the unpleasantness

16 Goodwill Messages (p ) Written in response to: – Thanks – Recognition – Sympathy Goodwill messages should be: – Selfless – Specific – Sincere – Spontaneous – Short

17 Thank-You Notes (p ) – Direct opening – Special notebook paper or heavy cardstock – Written in response to: Gift Favor Hospitality Responding to Goodwill Messages (p. 160) – Rude not to respond to recognition – Written to: Answer congratulatory note Respond to pat on the back

18 Conveying Sympathy (p ) – Refer to the death or misfortune sensitively – Praise the deceased in a personal way – Offer assistance without going into excessive detail – End on a reassuring, forward-looking note

19 Is Appropriate for Goodwill Messages (p. 161) Handwritten messages more impressive appropriate if: – You frequently communicate with receiver via – You precede a phone call or a handwritten offering condolences – You immediately follow a condolence with a handwritten note


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