Good writing uses the right words to express our thoughts to someone else. It is a skill that can constantly be polished and refined. Good writing does not just happen by chance; it is something that is learned, practiced, and executed. Poor writing costs time, money, frustration, and possibly one’s reputation! In business writing, the language is concise, the point of view is clear, and the points are well expressed.
Good writing is work, and even the best writers get discouraged. However, with practice one can feel more confident about their own writing. This workshop will give participants the tools to become better writers, better communicators.
Specific Learning Objectives Include
Learning the value of good written communication
Understanding the importance of writing and proofreading your work so it is clear, concise, complete, correct, and courteous
Recognizing the “how” of writing effective and efficient emails, incorporating a variety of strategies and knowledge
Identifying the dos and don’ts of email writing
1. Why Write?
Many people feel that writing is a burden or something they should be able to delegate.This session will help participants identify the value of writing. It will also include the top challenges organizations face with regards to the writing of their employees and participants will have an opportunity to discuss their personal writing challenges.
2. The First Four C’s of Writing
Participants will discuss the first four C’s of writing: clear, concise, complete, and correct. The session includes the why and the how of the individual components of good writing Participants will practice each C through writing exercises to confirm understanding.
3. Word Agreement
During this session, participants will explore word agreement through a brief lecture and a writing exercise. This discussion includes pronouns, antecedents and modifiers and their role in good writing.
4. Active and Passive Voice
Most people prefer to read writing that is in the active voice. We will discuss and practice both voices during this session.
5. Sentences and Sentence Types
This session will discuss the structure of sentences and paragraphs and the importance of varied use with good writing. Manners and Courtesy, The Final C, the fifth C , courtesy, is an important principle of good business writing and will be discussed.
6. Practical Language
It is important to use words that best reflect what one is trying to say. In this session, they will examine some common dilemmas, such as fewer vs. less, that vs. which, than vs. then, and suggested solutions.
7. Sentence Construction
The two basic rules for constructing sentences are: use construction that makes the meaning clear and keep the construction parallel. Participants will learn the concepts and practice the theory by rewriting sentences that do not follow these rules.
After discussing all the punctuation rules, participants will work in pairs to develop a series of test questions for other participants. There are some key points that can be used to debrief the test. Capitalization rules will also be included in this section.
9. Writing Effective Emails
This session will explain why there is a lot of miscommunication when using email as one’s primary form of communication. Although email is convenient and fast, participants need to recognize tips, tricks, and strategies to ease the frustration of the reader and allow the writer to get their message across more efficiently.
10. When To Send an Email?
Participants will learn the dos and don’ts of when one should send an email and how planning is an important step in the evolution of an efficient, productive email.
11. Audience Needs
Being able to assess one’s reader’s needs before drafting an email is a crucial step in sending an efficient and productive email. These strategies would include: how to best use the subject line, which acronyms to use in order to speed up inbox recognition, and how to avoid thread jacking.
12. Reader versus Writer Focused
Emails are either reader or writer focused. Which one allows the writer, the best bang for their buck? This session is followed up with practical exercises to confirm the learning of the theory.
Participants discuss the pros and cons of various email formatting, including white space, lists, and parallel structure.
14. Trigger versus Positive Wording
This session deals with what triggers us as readers and how can we ensure that we default to positive wording when writing emails. Emotional responses to emails is also discussed in this section. Exercises are used to confirm understanding.
15. The Last Few Tips
Correct use of the “To and CC ” fields along with email signatures, salutations, and closings are discussed to end out the topic of email writing. Final email rules, dos and don’ts, are also included in this section.
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