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EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION : THE “KNOW- HOW” OF BUSINESS WRITING

by

RESOURCE CONSULTS September 2010

“A man is as alive as he can communicate”- L. Ron

Hubbard

INTRODUCTION

Communication skills are essential in every sphere of human endeavour the sole activity that all people share . It is either spoken or written with a clear motive . It packs with it the concept of understanding in the various forms in

which it is presented ; and of course ,there are strict rules that must be

adhered to if we are to be taken seriously when we communicate. The importance of this great tool central to the success of any organisation and what can arise if neglected form the crux of this presentation

WHAT IS COMMUNICATION?

Communication is the shift of a particle from one part of space to another. The particle is the thing being communicated: an object, a written message, a spoken word or words or an idea. According to Hybels & Weaver(2001), it is a process in which people share information, ideas and feelings, which not only involves spoken and written words but also body language,

personal mannerism and style which add meaning to a message.

UNDERSTANDING THE CONCEPT

The concept of communication can never be mastered unless one understands it.

-It is the consideration & action of forcing a strong wish or particle

from source point across a distance to receipt- point.

-The intention is to bring into reality at the receipt point a duplication

and understanding of what emanated (came forth) from the source

point .

FORMULA

Cause Distance Effect with intention Attention and Duplication with

Understanding

-In all these, there is a whole lot in the interplay on the question of interest

generated from Cause (speaker/ writer) and Effect (hearer/ receiver) who

finds the particle interesting . Of course, this is when communication takes place.

TYPES

It is essential to state that our objective is to learn to write effectively A central goal of business writing is conciseness: saying what you intend directly; not tiptoeing or beating about the bush.

There are different types of Business Letters:

Reports : General, Minutes of meetings Letters: cover, application

BUSINESS TO BUSINESS

Appreciation- gratitude for help extended /good business deal

Congratulations- in praise of the recipient for job well done

Recognition written statement of recognised efforts Reference- character build-up of a prospective candidate (employee) Recommendation endorsement to hire/ accept/ admit Sympathy Condolences person/ family Invite/ Invitation

Credit a way of endorsing a certain business to be considered a credit Loan

Letter of interest- Reply to an invitation that confirms presence Business memorandum Notices distributed to staff. They are reminders of company activities or imminent changes in the company Business introduction to introduce a new business to readers Donation asking for donations

Termination Resignation employee desire to leave a job

Business to Client letter

Welcome letter- welcome the client and thank him/her for choosing the company Appreciation Thank the client for having business with the company

Apology- asking the client for reconsideration, apologising for failing to

deliver

Collection Notice outstanding payment due Invoice letter Template asking the client to state the invoice number of the transactions

Invitation inviting a client to join a certain gathering

Marketing letter- stating the newest products that the company will provide soon or is presently providing Rejection – stating the rejection of a client’s request

FORMAT

Generally, -Use A4 or Letterhead

-2.5 cm or 1 inch margins on all four sides

-Use a simple font Times new Roman or Arial -10 to 12 point font -Use a comma after the salutation (Dear Mr. Ade,) -Lay out the letter so that it fits the paper appropriately -Single space within paragraphs -Double space between paragraphs

-Double space between last sentence & closing (Sincerely, Best wishes)

-Leave three to five spaces for a handwritten signature -CC- copies to after the typed name if necessary -Fold in three (horizontally)before placing in the envelope

-Block format is most common & everything begins at the left margin

-Best to type the envelope

September 22,2010

Mr. Ayodele Owolabi Leadway Assurance 20 Ruxton Road Ikoyi, Lagos.

Your Ref:

Our Ref:

LAYOUT

Dear Mr. Owolabi Forthcoming Presentation First Paragraph

Second Paragraph

Third Paragraph

Sincerely,

XXXXXXXXXXXXX, President

CC:

FOR MEMORANDA

Memos are short internal business letters, sent to other staff within the same

company. May also be posted somewhere inside a company for all to see Becoming less common because of e-mail. Do not usually contain salutation or closing Maybe typed or handwritten Text portion generally in block format Should include “ From ”, ’To’, “ Date ”, ‘subject’ and of course the message e.g

From: (name or initials) To: (name or initials)

Date:

Subject : (Short description) Message starts

-Often

-With

-bullet points

(Company Logo)

MEMORANDUM

FORMATTING BUSINESS EMAIL

When using email in business, most of the guidelines for standard formatting in business letters apply.

A few differences:r

Choose a subject line that is simple and straight forward Refrain from using key words that might cause an email to go into another person’s trash box

Repeat the subject line in the body of the email

Use the ‘cc’ address line to copy more than one person You can request a receipt the system will automatically let you know when someone has opened your email

Instead of a signature, include your typed name , your email address below it,

business name and address, phone & fax number and website if appropriate . Remember that people often print out emails , so your own email address and the subject line would be lost if you had not included them in the body of the email.

NOTE: Internal electronic mail may be formatted more like a memo than a formal letter.

FOR REPORTS:

-Four areas are represented:

- Terms of Reference : Gives background information on the reason for the report

-Procedure : Gives the exact steps taken & methods used

- Findings : Points out discoveries made during the course of the report

investigation.

-Conclusion Logical

-Recommendation: Actions the writer feels need to be taken