Chapter 6
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Chapter 6 Chapter 6 Presentation Transcript

  • Chapter 6 Organizing and Writing Business Messages Mary Ellen Guffey, Business Communication: Process and Product , 5e Copyright © 2006
  • Formal Research Methods
    • Access electronically – Internet, databases, CD-ROMs
    • Search manually – books, articles, and other secondary sources
    • Investigate primary sources – interviews, surveys, focus groups
    • Experiment scientifically – tests with experimental and control groups
  • Informal Research and Idea Generation
    • Look in office files.
    • Talk with your boss.
    • Interview the target audience.
    • Conduct an informal survey.
    • Brainstorm for ideas.
    • Develop a cluster diagram.
  • Using a Cluster Diagram to Generate Ideas
    • 1. In the center of a clean sheet of paper, write your topic name and circle it.
    • 2. Around the circle, record any topic ideas that pop into your mind.
    • 3. Circle each separate area.
    • 4. Avoid censoring ideas.
    • 5. If ideas seem related, join them with lines; don’t spend time on organization just yet.
  • Organizing Data
    • Listing and outlining
    • Grouping ideas into patterns.
        • Direct pattern for receptive audiences
        • Indirect pattern for unreceptive audiences
  • Organizing Cluster Diagram Ideas Into Subclusters
    • Analyze the idea generated in the original cluster diagram.
    • Cross out ideas that are obviously irrelevant; simplify and clarify.
    • Add new ideas that seem appropriate.
    • Study the ideas for similarities.
    • Group similar ideas into classifications (such as Purpose, Content, Development, and Form).
    • If the organization seems clear at this point, prepare an outline.
    • For further visualization, make subcluster circles around each classification.
    Organizing Cluster Diagram Ideas Into Subclusters Tips
  • Audience Response Determines Pattern of Organization If pleased If neutral DIRECT PATTERN Good News or Main Idea If mildly interested
  • Audience Response Determines Pattern of Organization If unwilling or uninterested If hostile INDIRECT PATTERN If displeased or disappointed Bad News or Main Idea
  • Composing
  • Creating Effective Sentences
    • Recognize phrases and clauses.
    • Use short sentences.
    • Emphasize important ideas.
    • Use the active voice for most sentences.
    • Use the passive voice to deemphasize the performer and/or to be tactful.
    • Avoid dangling and misplaced modifiers.
  • Recognizing Phrases and Clauses
    • Clauses have subjects and verbs; phrases do not.
    • Independent clauses are complete; dependent clauses are not.
    • Phrases and dependent clauses cannot function as sentences.
        • Independent Clause: They were eating cold pizza.
        • Dependent Clause: that they want to return for a refund
        • Phrase: to return for a refund
  • Using Short Sentences
    • Sentence Length
    • 8 words
    • 15 words
    • 19 words
    • 28 words
    • Comprehension Rate
    • 100%
    • 90%
    • 80%
    • 50%
    Source: American Press Institute
  • Emphasizing Important Ideas
    • Position the most important idea at the beginning of the sentence.
    • Make sure the most important idea is the subject of the sentence.
    • Place the main idea in a short sentence.
  • Use the Active Voice for Most Sentences
    • Active voice: We lost money .
    • Active voice: I sent the e-mail message yesterday.
    • (The subject is the performer.)
  • Use the Passive Voice To Deemphasize the Performer and/or To Be Tactful
    • Passive voice: Money was lost (by us).
    • Passive voice: The e-mail message was sent yesterday (by me).
    • (Passive voice test: Ask “By whom?” If you can fill in the performer, the verb is probably in the passive voice.)
  • Avoid Dangling Modifiers
    • Dangling modifier: To be hired, an application must be completed.
    • Revision: To be hired, you must complete an application.
    • Revision: To be hired, fill out an application.
    • (In the last example, you is understood to be the subject of fill .)
  • Avoid Misplaced Modifiers
    • Misplaced modifier: The patient was referred to a psychiatrist with a severe emotional problem.
    • Revision: The patient with a severe emotional problem was referred to a psychiatrist.
  • Effective Paragraphs
    • Drafting effective paragraphs
      • Discuss only one topic in each paragraph.
      • Arrange sentences in a strategic plan.
      • Link ideas to build coherence.
      • Use transitional expressions for coherence.
      • Compose short paragraphs for effective business messages.
    Effective Paragraphs
    • Discussing only one topic in each paragraph
      • Group similar ideas together.
      • Start a new paragraph for each new topic.
    Effective Paragraphs
      • Direct Plan: main sentence followed by supporting sentences (for defining, classifying, illustrating, and describing ideas)
      • Pivoting Plan: limiting sentences, main sentence, supporting sentences (for comparing and contrasting)
    Effective Paragraphs
    • Arranging Sentences in a Strategic Plan
    • Indirect Plan: supporting sentences, main sentence (for describing causes followed by effects)
    Effective Paragraphs
    • Arranging Sentences in a Strategic Plan
    • Linking ideas to build coherence
      • Sustain the key idea by repeating or rephrasing it.
      • Use a pronoun (. . . to fulfill three goals. They are . . .).
      • Dovetail sentences. Connect the beginning of each new sentence with a word from the end of the previous sentence (. . . to hire new employees. These employees . . .).
    Effective Paragraphs
    • Using transitional expressions for coherence
      • Recommended expressions:
        • additionally
        • also
        • as a result
        • for example
        • in other words
        • therefore
    Effective Paragraphs
  • Document for Analysis Revision Activity 6.1
  • To: All Southeast Division Employees To help you make better hardware and software selections that benefit you and the Southeast Division, the Systems Development Department has developed three steps we'd like you to follow in making any future purchases. 1. Contact SDD when you begin your search for hardware or software. Our staff is very knowledgeable about personal computers, word processing programs, and other software. As a result, we can provide you with invaluable assistance in making the best selection for your needs at the best possible prices. Activity 6.1
  • 2. Present a written proposal and a purchase request form for approval. The proposal must establish the need for computer equipment and analyze the benefits resulting from the purchase. Also include an itemized statement of costs for all proposed hardware and software. 3. Coordinate all future purchases with SDD. After your equipment or software arrives, be sure to continue to schedule all purchases through SDD. In this way, we can help maintain compatibility; your computer can "talk" with those of your colleagues in the division. We can also help you develop a library of resources to share. Activity 6.1
  • If you follow these three steps, we'll all benefit from a coordinated purchase effort. Call me at X466 if you have any questions. Activity 6.1
  • Organizing Data Outline Activity 6.2
    • I. Before purchase
    • II. Purchase authorization
    • III. After purchase
    • A. Let us help you make a decision.
    • B. Our knowledgeable staff is available for consultation.
    • C. We know personal computers, word processing programs, and other software.
    I. Before purchase Activity 6.2
  • II. Purchase authorization
    • A. Present written proposal.
    • 1. Describe need for equipment.
    • 2. Analyze benefits resulting from purchase.
    • 3. Itemize costs for all hardware and software.
    • B. Prepare purchase request form for approval.
    Activity 6.2
  • III. After purchase
    • A. Coordinate all future hardware and software purchases to facilitate compatibility.
    • 1. Allows computers to “talk” to each other.
    • 2. Develops a library of resources for the entire division.
    Activity 6.2
  • End