Dr. Deanna Sellnow (Director Division of Instructional Communication, University of Kentucky) and I recently facilitated a two day business writing fundamentals workshop for a Lexington area law firm.
Day 1: Established a foundation for writing and focused on the communication process, discussed the rhetorical situation, and dabbled in mechanics.
Day 2: Our material shifted to more applicable/personal instruction for this specific firm as we discussed “Communication Goals”: Building Relationships, Information Sharing, and Persuasion.
I am amazed at how many people (myself included) believe they are “effective”/”good”/”adequate” writers yet struggle with basic fundamentals. We believe that a written message must be flowery and verbose and end up sacrificing clear communication and shared understanding. In our sessions we belabored the 5 C’s of Effective Business Writing: Clear, Concise, Courteous, Complete, and Correct. At its core effective writing equates to message crafting. We follow certain rules (grammar, punctuation, sentence structure) but ultimately these rules help us achieve greater success.