Art of International Professional Writing

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Art of International Professional Writing


Don’t take your reader on a long scenic journey to get to your point. Instead, go straight, albeit colorfully, to your point of view quickly. PICTURES | SHUTTER

Many college graduates struggle in professional work with writing standards even though they hold prestigious degrees. There is a difference between written English and verbal English, but too often most alumni from various campuses only capture verbal English in their writing instead of real business English. Thus, for five weeks, business daily will capture salient tips to boost one’s writing at executive levels.

Insofar as, first of all, please take a moment and write a paragraph longer than three sentences about any particular announcement coming to your organization. Create a post about a change you want to see implemented in your business. Now please refer to it throughout the day and weeks to come and rewrite it at the end. As an example, please read the following:

Example 1

“I’ve been in this business for a long time. At first, I entered this industry thinking that I could grow it quickly. A LOT of challenges had occurred. I’ve been spending a lot of time sitting and talking with friends and colleagues recently. I realize that things here have changed and maybe the old challenges can be overcome. I am very happy with the work everyone has done over the past 3 months. Our sales have improved a lot and customers are satisfied. It made us change the way we will pay you. We all hope the new system works better for you and rewards you the right way. Please feel free to call Human Resources if you have any questions. Thanks for all your hard work.

The real example above of a real USIU executive training highlights a very well-meaning former CEO. However, the executive lacks the depth and expertise to take the ad away from its basic feel and towards professional sophistication. The example below reaffirms the above in international professional writing:

Example #2

“Management would like to humbly thank all employees for their hard work over the past three months. Working as a team, the organization exceeded all sales expectations, beat the competition and delighted customers by delivering new levels of value that were previously unrecognized. Therefore, the Society is working to introduce a new incentive bonus system to reward everyone appropriately for their valuable and appreciated contributions. As the program rolls out in the coming weeks, please direct any questions or comments to your appropriate human resources managers. Thank you again and may the Society reach new heights as the team continues to grow and prosper.

Do you notice a difference between the two? Some differences: use of declarative language, active verbs, specifics, business-oriented and no use of “this”, “is”, “are”, “I” and “we”.

Written vs verbal

Now that you look at the paragraph you wrote, think to yourself. Did you write the paragraph the same way you speak verbally or did you write it specifically differently due to the written nature? I hope you wrote it differently than what you’re talking about. You see, there is a dramatic difference between verbal English and written English. For example, when you learn a foreign language, such as German or French, qualified tutors actively teach you to distinguish between conversational and written styles. Written language should often appear more formal.

When you hold a verbal conversation, your listener gains advantages because they hear your tone of voice and intonation as well as witness your hand gestures and realize the sincerity in your eyes. So when you write your thoughts and lose the above benefits, if your writing is as simple as speaking it, you lose your power to enchant your reader.

Take more time to construct written communication than to simply transcribe the thoughts in your head as if you were speaking them. Show depth and keep the reader curious about the words and topics that come next. Don’t make your writing too obvious.

Direct

Don’t take your reader on a long scenic journey to get to your point. Instead, go straight, albeit colorfully, to your point of view quickly.

When writing a longer communication, an old adage must resonate in your mind every time: “Tell them what you are going to tell them, then tell them what you want to tell them, then tell them what what you told them”. Many university students around the world hear these words in their introductory writing classes. Start with a statement stating your main point, then give details that support your point, then summarize your point for your readers.

Next week, business daily will dive into some simple yet powerful do’s and don’ts of professional writing.

Do you have a management or leadership issue, question or challenge? Contact Scott Bellows @scottprofessor or [email protected]

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