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Business Writing Skills

COURSE OBJECTIVES

Upon attendance to the Effective Business Writing Skills training course, the participants will gain:

  • A clear understanding of how to plan and structure business writing in a professional manner
  • Practice in building the introduction, the main body, and the conclusion of an effective business communication
  • The ability to compile the writing in a logical sequence
  • A guide to help recognize, and eliminate, common errors in business writing
  • The ability to focus on the main purpose of the communication
  • The skills to maintain clarity in preparing business communication

COURSE Outline

Business Writing Overview

Introduction to Business Writing

    • Course objectives & agenda
    • Review examples of participants current written communication
    • Q & A

The Nature and Range of Business Writing

    • Differences between written and oral communication
    • Differences between types of business writing
    • Effective writing v/s efficient writing

Target Audience

    • Identifying the aim of the business writing
    • Analysing and understanding the target audience and the readers’ needs

Characteristics of Effective Writing

    • Putting the reader first
    • Types of communication to provide information (informative), to make recommendations (persuasive)
    • Setting and meeting objectives and terms of reference
    • Length of writing and the use of appendices
    • Layout and structure
    • Developing and following a house style

Information Gathering, Writing Process and Document Design

Researching Information & Gathering Material

    • Scheduling and deadlines
    • Identifying your knowledge sources
    • Organising and grouping your material

Selection Material and Structuring Communication

    • Criteria of Relevance what to leave out and what to put in
    • Developing logical sequencing
    • Using headings and sub-headings as signposts for the reader
    • The role of introductions and conclusions

The Writing Process

    • Concept and application of rapid composition
    • Planning and drafting processes
    • Developing keyboard skills
    • Editing
    • Getting the best from spell and grammar checks
    • Proofreading

Document Design

    • Standard templates
    • Agree font style & size
    • Use of BOLD and capital letters
    • Headings & subheadings
    • Consistent and correct use of display lists and bullet points
    • Justifications
    • Using and presenting tables
    • Diagrams, figures, and graphs
    • Numbering
    • Footnotes, endnotes, and hyperlinks
    • Addendums

Persuasive Writing and Examples

How to Make Your Writing More Persuasive

    • The 5 Ps of persuasion
    • The 12 most persuasive words
    • The Aikido approach
    • Dr. Cialdini’s 6 levers of persuasion

Examples of Different Types of Written Documents

    • Work Instructions
    • Operating & Maintenance Procedures
    • Manuals & Handbooks
    • Questionnaires

Other Forms of Written Communication (Letters, E-mails & Minutes)

    • Letter style, tone, and structures
    • E-mail style and purpose
    • Meeting notes purpose, structure and writing processes

Readability and Grammar Improvement Techniques

Improve Readability

    • Why is simplicity so important?
    • Fog factor analysis and readability scores
    • Sentence length and paragraph structure
    • Dimensions of writing style
    • Active v/s passive voice
    • Improving language content and style
    • Choosing your words
    • Confusing pronouns

Punctuation and Grammar

    • The language of grammar (a guide to grammatical terms and functions)
    • Commas, full-stops, colons, semi-colons, dashes, brackets, etc.
    • The apostrophes
    • Hyphenating words
    • Consistency in using capital letters for proper nouns

Final Document Review and Presentation

Checking the Final Document

    • Appendices & References
    • Editing & Proof Reading
    • Scheduling into the preparation
    • Developing the skills of a proofreader
    • Developing a systematic approach

Presenting the Document Verbally

    • Selecting relevant information
    • PowerPoint clarity rules
    • Presentation skills