August 21, 2006
Liz published this at 11:09 am
Improving Your Writing Skills Is an Investment
Straight talk on business writing is a crucial need in the 21st century. We do business with people we don’t meet. It doesn’t matter whether we work at home or in a Fortune 500 environment, being able to communicate effectively in writing affects our ability to get work; it affects our place in society.
Do you want that job as a police officer, designer, detective, cook,or landscaper? Do you need to write a deal memo or a letter of complaint? You have to express yourself well and clearly, and to know the form and style that best suits the information you’re presenting, or you won’t be heard.
“With the fast pace of today’s electronic communications, one might think that the value of fundamental writing skills has diminished in the workplace,” said Joseph M. Tucci, president and CEO of EMC Corporation and chairman of the Business Roundtable’s Education and the Workforce Task Force. “Actually, the need to write clearly and quickly has never been more important than in today’s highly competitive, technology-driven global economy.”
The National Commission on Writing also found that American corporations have been spending $3.1 BILLION annually on improving employee deficits in writing.
This fact alone has lead many companies to look on people lacking writing skills as unfit for hire and unlikely to last long enough for promotion.
“In most cases, writing ability could be your ticket in . . . or it could be your ticket out,” said one respondent.
How we write is how we are judged by others. It is often the only picture of us they see. Certainly many of the key people in our lives see more of our words than they see of us.
So I’m going to spend this series looking at communication in all of its forms as we interact with businesses — getting and giving work and talking about the work we do together — why it works and why it doesn’t. We’ll talk about targeting your audience, sounding professional and easy to work with, how to delegate properly, emails, deal memos, proposals, conversation, and when things should be in person, on the phone, and in text.
I’m interested in what else you think this series should include.It’s all about business communication. No one is perfect at that.
So comment away on the problems you see and I’ll add them to the list of what’s covered. Improving this single skill set is the quickest way to ensure job security.
–ME “Liz” Strauss
If you think Liz can help with a problem you’re having with your writing, check out the Work with Liz!! page in the sidebar.
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