How many of you have gotten an email and been unable to wade through all the blather to get to the point?
You know you have been on the giving and the receiving end of this scenario.
Many of us write as quickly as we can to get to the next thing on our list, but unedited writing can often mean you’ve wasted your reader’s time. And, after all, it’s the reader who needs to see and understand your message.
Communication doesn’t happen just with you, but between you and your receiver.
So, what can you do to improve your business communication?
Remember the three “T’s” – tone, time and technicality.
Tone matters. Whether you are writing to a supervisor, colleague or client, your writing tone matters. “Formal” can be a tone, but it does not mean to add a bunch of fancy language to make it sound more formal. Drop the $3 words, filler words (i.e., very, extra, quite) or flowery sentence construction and just say what you mean.
Time matters. Not only should you say what you mean, you should get to the point. Literally. Sometimes bullet points can help your reader quickly notice what the key messages are. This technique tends to force conciseness and clarity. It might take you more time to focus your writing, but your reader will appreciate the succinctness. A few minutes of editing on your part can often save hours of unnecessary back and forth responses.
Technicality matters. There are two types of “technicality.” The first is technically correct writing – meaning communication that is free from grammar or spelling mistakes. You should always proofread before you send. Writing without proofing can often show carelessness or haste on your part, which is not something you want to convey. The second type of “technicality” is specialty language. Nobody likes jargon. Remove buzzwords and industry-specific language unless you are completely certain the recipient is knowledgeable of acronyms and other uncommon words or phrases.
You might think this sounds like a process, but if you practice, writing like a boss will become your norm.