Three Quick Tips to Improve your Business Writing Skills

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Writing is an important part of our professional life. We need to write emails, messages, presentations, reports, etc. on continuous basis irrespective of the verticals we work in. In fact, written communication forms a significant part of our daily work in the office. We are living in the era of virtual offices where team members could be thousands of miles apart. Excellent writing skills are required for team members and clients to work efficiently on projects. In my early days, I used to look for some people who can write a paper for me as I was not very confident of writing professional reports. In the process, I met excellent writers and learnt the business writing skills. Research has proven that individuals with good writing skills do well in their professional career. Irrespective of your native language, you can master business writing skills in a very short period. You can become a brilliant business writer by following three quick tips:

Use Active Voice and Be Direct

Being polite is important in non-verbal communication. Whenever you are writing business related content, you must choose the words carefully. The words should express the situation without hurting anyone. The end objective of your content should be to convince someone about something and not pointing out individuals’ errors. Use active voice wherever possible. Writing in the third person and passive sentences make the content boring. It also takes away the conversational tone of the content. So be direct and write to-the-point to keep your content interesting and fresh.

Use Combination of Short and Long Sentences

Many people have a habit of writing extremely short or long sentences. I have seen many emails from my colleagues that seem to explain everything in one or two sentences. Similarly, some people write in such a way that one slide of a PowerPoint presentation can contain only one sentence. Avoid this common mistake of writing long sentences. Use a combination of short and long sentences. You should start with short sentences and then gradually move to the long sentences. A sentence should not include more than one idea.

Avoid using Adverbs

Usage of modifiers is quite common in colloquial language. However, they make the business content weak and ineffective. At some places, modifiers may be necessary. However, it should be avoided as much as possible. For example, a blog of 500 words should not contain more than one or two adverbs. Thus avoid using terms such as “very important”, “extremely urgent,” “very difficult”, etc. The terms “important, urgent or difficult” convey the same message with better impact.

Concluding Suggestions

Any prolific writer will always have sufficient room to improve their writing skills. Like any other skills, writing also requires constant practice. If you want to become a good writer, then you have to be a voracious reader. The more you read, the better you will write. While reading, start paying attention to the usage of various terms. Whenever you come across a new word, try to include that in your next content, be it an email, a report or a presentation. You need to spend some time initially to learn. In case of urgent writing requirements, don’t rush to start writing. Rather spend some time in preparing the layout to get a clarity of the topic. It will help you during actual writing by streamlining your thought process and save a lot of your time.

About Mohit Tater

Mohit is the co-founder and editor of Entrepreneurship Life, a place where entrepreneurs, start-ups, and business owners can find wide ranging information, advice, resources, and tools for starting, running, and growing their businesses.

Comments

  1. I like your advice to avoid using adverbs. As you said, those can really be frustrating to read. The last thing you want to do is use a lot of adverbs and bore the reader. Avoiding adverbs can really make a difference even outside of business writing. Do you have any other tips about business, maybe more outside of writing?

  2. Becca Holton says:

    That’s a bit interesting how your reading affects how well you write. It would probably help to remember to be patient with yourself as you’re trying to develop this skill. I’ve had a friend mention how she thinks that it might even be worth the investment to get professional assistance to make sure you’re using good communication.

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