Completing Business Messages

Revising Your Messages

  • Evaluating your content, organization, style & tone
    • Make sure the content is accurate, relevant to audience’s needs & complete
    • Review the organization (logic & convincing)
    • Consider whether the right tone has been achieved
    • Make sure the opening is relevant, interesting, & focus on reader’s reaction
    • Make sure the conclusion shows the summary of the main idea & leaves positive impression
  • Reviewing for readability
    • Varying your sentence length

Revising Your Messages

  • Evaluating your content, organization, style & tone
    • Make sure the content is accurate, relevant to audience’s needs & complete
    • Review the organization (logic & convincing)
    • Consider whether the right tone has been achieved
    • Make sure the opening is relevant, interesting, & focus on reader’s reaction
    • Make sure the conclusion shows the summary of the main idea & leaves positive impression
  • Reviewing for readability
    • Varying your sentence length

Sentence Length

Advantages

Disadvantages

Short (0-15 words)
  • Processed quickly
  • Easy to understand
  • Easy to translate
  • Disconnected
  • Choppy
Medium (15-25 words)
  • Showing relationships among ideas
  • Lack the punch of short sentence & informative power of long sentence
Long (>25 words)
  • Convey complex ideas
  • List multiple points
  • Summarize information
  • Harder to understand
  • Harder to skim
    • Keeping your paragraph short
      • Optimum paragraph length is short to medium
      • Short paragraph is easier to read, look inviting & helps audience to read more carefully
      • Add enough transitions to ensure a clear connection between ideas
    • Using lists & bullets to clarify & emphasize
      • Lists are effective tools for highlighting & simplifying material
    • Adding headings & subheadings
      • Heading – brief title about the content of the section
      • Subheadings – subsections
      • Descriptive headings – identify a topic
      • Informative headings – put reader into the context & as the writer’s guideline
  • Editing for clarity
    • If there is too long sentence, try to break it up
    • Avoid hedging to the point
    • Parallel writing – expressing ideas using the same grammatical structure
    • Do not leave the phrases unconnected (dangling)
    • Clarify the sentence by putting some of the nouns in a modifying phrase
    • Watch for word endings such as ion, tion, ing, ment, ant, ent, ance, & ency
    • Keep the subject & predicate of a sentence close together
    • Use specific references
    • Moderate your enthusiasm
  • Editing for conciseness
    • Delete the unnecessary words & phrases
    • Shorten the long words & phrases
    • Eliminate the redundancies
    • Rewrite the ‘It is/There are’ starters or remove it
  • Using technology to revise your message
    • Spell checkers
    • Computerized thesauruses
    • Grammar checkers
    • Style checkers

Producing Your Messages

  • Adding graphics, sound, video & hypertext
    • Take advantage of software’s ability
  • Designing for readability
    • Effective design :
      • Consistence
      • Balance
      • Restraint
      • Detail
    • White space
      • Free space of the text (outside margins, open area around headings etc)
      • Be generous with white space
      • Less intimidating & easier to read
    • Margins & justifications
      • Space around text & between text columns
      • Types : justified, centered, right & left
      • Typefaces/Font – Text characters
    • Type style – modification (bold, italic, underline)
  • Using technology to produce your message
    • Templates & style sheets
    • Page setup
    • Column formatting
    • Paragraph formatting
    • Numbered & bulleted list
    • Tables
    • Photos, illustrations, text boxes & objects

Proofreading Your Messages

  • Look for language errors, missing material, design errors & typographical error
    • Make multiple passes
    • Use perceptual tricks
    • Focus on high-priority items
    • Get some distance
    • Stay focused & vigilant
    • Take your time

Distributing Your Messages

  • Consider these factors :
    • Cost
    • Convenience
    • Time
    • Security & privacy

One thought on “Completing Business Messages

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