Tips and Guidelines for Business Communication
As you develop in your career, your ability to speak, listen, question and write efficiently and effectively becomes an essential skill set.
The ability to write clearly and professionally is key to business communication and brand management. Poor writing skills create negative impressions from both colleagues and clients.
With the increase in social media communication and access to the Internet, anyone can become their own publisher. We are seeing more and more examples of poor writing skills.
Tips and Guidelines for improving your writing skills:
- Always remember your audience, as this will ensure that you use the appropriate medium and structure. Style, tone and vocabulary must also be aligned with your audience and context.
- Remember that each piece of written communication should serve a clear purpose. Do not divert from the purpose.
- Use plain English – a style of writing which allows the reader to understand the message the first time they read it. Avoid using unnecessary jargon, buzz words and clichés. Keep your writing clear and concise.
- Formatting helps your writing become user-friendly but do not overdo it. Too many visual elements take the focus off your message. Use headlines, bullet points, numbering and other features to assist, not confuse, your reader.
- To check and improve your work, read it aloud. Reading your writing, forces you to slow down and enables you to pick up on mistakes that your eyes skipped over.
- Even if you know the spelling and grammar rules, double-check your work or have it proof-read by somebody else. Our brains work faster than our fingers can type and typographical errors do still creep in.
- Do not assume that computer spelling and grammar checkers identify all mistakes. Re-read and check your writing.