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EXCUSE ME, BUT YOUR WRITING IS SHOWING!

Think about it.How many people do you write to during a business day? Howmany of these people know you only through your ... so maybe you have shared a few ... with someof them. But the

Think about it.

How many people do you write to during a business day? How
many of these people know you only through your words?

Okay, so maybe you have shared a few handshakes with some
of them. But their opinion of who you are and your worth as
an employee or business person may still be judged
primarily by the words you write.

It comes down to this. Everything...EVERYTHING!!!...you
write is a picture of you. It might be the wrong picture
but that doesn't make any difference.

The PERCEPTION of who you are is far more
powerful than the REALITY.

DECLINING WRITING SKILLS IN BUSINESS

For over 30 years, I've served as a Business Writing
Consultant to hundreds of companies, both privately owned
and Fortune 500. During the past 15 years, I've noticed a
steady decline in the ability of many business people to
effectively express their ideas in writing. They are
often extremely articulate in meetings. But when asked to
reduce something to writing they can't get past the subject
line.

Here's an example. I recently received a phone call from a
brilliant articulate middle management executive of a
Fortune 500 company. He was calling from his office at the
company's headquarters after nine in the evening.

He had just spent several hours trying to draft a Purpose
Statement for a marketing proposal. This Purpose Statement
was important. It set the tone for the rest of the written
proposal. If it was clear, concise and promising, he could
expect a full reading. If the statement was
confused and dull, he was on his way toward rejection.

I had him fax me what he had written. It was little more
than company cliches strung together with connectives which
said almost nothing. If I had not known and worked with
this man on other projects, I would have considered him
dull and ordinary.

I had him tell me in his own words what he wanted to say.
We then worked together to draft a statement that helped
sell his program...AND HIMSELF.

DOES EFFECTIVE BUSINESS WRITING REQUIRE TALENT?

I won't deny that having a writing talent can help.
Although I have seen many imcoms (important communications
such as letters, memos, proposals and reports) fail because
a literary style called more attention to the words than
the message.

Effective business writing is not literature. It requires
the application of common sense rules and easily learned
techniques.

You start with the basic business writing
formula...attention, interest, action. Although I don't
promote formula writing, every imcom MUST include these
basic steps to succeed.

ATTENTION

Every working day, countless imcoms are distributed with
openings that say nothing. It's as though the writer is
thinking, "Hey, I wrote this wonderful imcom so, of course,
it will be read."

The reality is that an imcom has only two to three seconds
to begin communicating. If it fails to grab a foothold on
the target's attention immediately, it is either trashed,
put on a 'read whenever' pile or quickly scanned and
instantly forgotten.

INTEREST

Business people often equate interest to length. "People
just don't read long imcoms," I am told. No, the truth is
people don't read boring imcoms.

I have read two paragraph imcoms that were too long. I
have also read multi-page imcoms that were just right. The
difference was content.

Remember, you can never bore anyone into reading anything!

ACTION

The action desired might be a budget approval, acceptance
of an idea or program, go-ahead on a project...whatever.
However, too often, this action is never motivated or even
asked for. The imcom simply shrivels up and dies at the
end. Sometimes the imcom writer assumes a
certain action will be taken. Or, the writer is afraid of
appearing too pushy. Actually the reverse is true. A strong
close suggests that the writer is in control, decisive and
self-confident.

DO YOUR IMCOMS SPEAK WELL OF YOU?

Do they present you as an organized, intelligent and
knowledgeable business person or employee? If not, you can
do something about it. Becoming a power writer is neither
difficult nor time consuming. It primarily involves a
commitment to begin. You'll be stepping out ahead of a lot
of other people if you make that commitment today.
Discovering ways to impress when you express can put you
months, even yearsFree Web Content, ahead on your career path.

Source: Free Articles from ArticlesFactory.com

ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Doug C. Grant is the author of ‘HOW TO MOVE FROM CUBICLE
TO CORNER OFFICE WITH THE SECRETS OF POWER WRITING. A FREE
preview plus details on receiving a no-cost Blue Pencil
Edit for one of your own imcoms is available by e-mailing:
mailto:edit@newbieclub.com



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