From Strong Future Intentional Ask SC:
“In building relationships with your team members communication is the key. Your ability to communicate comes from experience, and experience can be an effective teacher.
The fact that you’re able to communicate what’s in your mind and asks this important question means that you can learn to write well and communicate with your team members effectively.
How to learn to write well and improve your communication skills in written form?
- Effective writing is not a gift that you’re born with; it’s a skill that you need to cultivate.
Before you start writing, consider what you want to say. Generally most people start working out their thoughts as they’re writing, which makes their writing less structured, meandering, and repetitive. Ask yourself this question: What should my audience know or think after reading this email/message? If the answer isn’t immediately clear, you’re moving too quickly. You need to step back and spend more time collecting your thoughts.
- Be direct to the point.
Make your point right up front. Most people find that the writing style and structure they developed in school doesn’t work as well in the business world. Postponing the message that you want to convey in the middle part of your writing will make your communication engagement with your audience unclear and ineffective. By concisely presenting your main idea first, you save your reader time and sharpen your argument before diving into the bulk of your writing.
- Avoid jargon.
Be selective in choosing words in consideration to your audience. As the business communicator, you must focus on the words you use and how you use them. Short, simple sentences, in themselves composed of words, also communicate a business style. In your previous English classes you may have learned to write eloquently, but in a business context, your goal is clear, direct communication. One strategy to achieve this goal is to write with the same words and phrases you use when you talk. However, since written communication lacks the immediate feedback that is present in an oral conversation, you need to choose words and phrases even more carefully to promote accuracy, clarity, and understanding.
- Always read what you write.
Consider putting your shoes in your reader’s shoes and ask the following questions: “Is my point clear and well structured? Are the sentences straightforward and concise?”
If you are writing ad copy, the goal is to motivate consumers to make a purchase decision. In each case, you are writing to a specific purpose, and a great place to start when considering what to write is to answer the following question: what are the readers’ expectations?
Reading is one step many writers point to as an integral step in learning to write effectively. If you want to write effectively in business, you need to read business-related documents. These can include letters, reports, business proposals, and business plans. You may find these where you work or in your school’s writing center, business department, or library; there are also many web sites that provide sample business documents of all kinds. Your reading should also include publications in the industry where you work.
You can also gain an advantage by reading publications in fields other than your chosen one; often reading outside your niche can enhance your versatility and help you learn how other people express similar concepts. Finally, don’t neglect general media like the business section of your local newspaper, and national publications like the Wall Street Journal. Reading is one of the most useful lifelong habits you can practice to boost your business communication skills.
- Allocate time to practice everyday.
Learning to write well takes time and your writing skills will improve as you practice everyday. Go to your local library and look for well written materials (books, magazines, etc.) to read everyday. When you read, be attentive to the word choice, sentence structure and flow. Most importantly, build time into your schedule for editing and revising. Writing and reworking your own writing is where the change happens, and it’s not quick. The time is well spent because good writers distinguish themselves on the job.
To summarize, here are the list of do’s and don’ts:
- Plan out what you will say to make your writing more direct and effective.
- Use words sparingly and keep sentences short and to the point.
- Avoid jargon and fancy words. Strive for clarity instead.
- Argue that you simply can’t write. Anyone can become a better writer with practice.
- Pretend that your first draft is perfect, or even passable. Every document can be improved.
- Bury your argument. Present your main idea as soon as possible. “