Your SlideShare is downloading. ×
Business Communication: Course notes topic 2 210613 024417
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in...5
×

Thanks for flagging this SlideShare!

Oops! An error has occurred.

×

Introducing the official SlideShare app

Stunning, full-screen experience for iPhone and Android

Text the download link to your phone

Standard text messaging rates apply

Business Communication: Course notes topic 2 210613 024417

341
views

Published on

Published in: Education, Business

0 Comments
0 Likes
Statistics
Notes
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Views
Total Views
341
On Slideshare
0
From Embeds
0
Number of Embeds
0
Actions
Shares
0
Downloads
2
Comments
0
Likes
0
Embeds 0
No embeds

Report content
Flagged as inappropriate Flag as inappropriate
Flag as inappropriate

Select your reason for flagging this presentation as inappropriate.

Cancel
No notes for slide

Transcript

  • 1. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies . UGQB3013/UQB3013: BUSINESS COMMUNICATION ONE Course Leader: Paul Chandra Bose S/O Selvarajoo Topic 2: Business Writing Towards Effective Written Communication Tactful Personal Positive Active Unified Coherent Clear Concise Readable Mechanically Sound 1. Business Correspondence Should Sound Formal AND Natural Example: As per your request, please find enclosed herewith a cheque in the amount of RM200. As requested, I am enclosing a cheque of RM200. (Natural yet formal) Example: • We have received your order. • Thank you for your recent order. (Natural yet formal) 2. Business Correspondence Should Be Concise and Specific Example: • This manual of instructions was prepared to aid our dealers in being helpful to their customers. (16 words) • We prepared this manual to help our dealers serve their customers.(12 words) Example: • It is the responsibility of our Production Department to see that it meets the requirements of our Sales Division. (19 words) • Our Production Department must meet our Sales Division’s requirements. (9 words) 1
  • 2. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies b. Emphasize on ‘You’ oriented rather than ‘I’ or ‘We’ oriented ‘You’ oriented: is receiver centered, shows that you see from their point of view and know that you care.  Thank you for your order. You will receive your solid walnut desk by Tuesday, June 19th.  We are happy to receive your order of our solid walnut desk. We shipped it this morning. c. Tone Is Positive, Not Negative Example: • On March 3rd, we sent you the accident insurance forms and requested that you return them within two weeks. It is now March 20th, and we have not received your reply. (Negative) • To receive your insurance check within a month, please fill in the insurance form we sent you on March 3rd and return it within two weeks. (Positive) 2
  • 3. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies Tone in Business Writing What is Tone? Business writers should consider the tone of their message, whether they are writing a memo, letter, report, or any type of business document. Tone is present in all communication activities. Ultimately, the tone of a message is a reflection of the writer and it does affect how the reader will perceive the message. How can I make sure my messages have the appropriate tone? The writer should consider several things when preparing to write. The following questions will help you to determine the appropriate tone for your message.  Why am I writing this document?  Who am I writing to and what do I want them to understand?  What kind of tone should I use? Why am I writing this document? You should take time to consider the purpose of your document in order to determine how you should express the message you wish to convey. Obviously, you want the message to reach your audience, and you will probably want the reader to take some action in response to your message. For example: Suzy is writing a job acceptance letter to an employer but is unsure of the tone she should take in the message. She has decided to accept the position. When she asks herself, "What is my intent upon writing?" she answers, "I want to accept the position, thank the company for the offer, and establish goodwill with my new co-workers." As she writes the letter she quickly assumes a tone that is appreciative for the offer and enthusiastic about beginning a new job. 3
  • 4. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies Who am I writing to and what do I want them to understand? Who is your audience? Whether it is an employer or a fellow worker, it is essential that you consider your reader before writing any document. Your message will be much more effective if you tailor the document to reach your specific audience. The tone that you use to write the document directly affects how the reader will interpret what is said. For example: Bob is writing a cover letter for a position as a Sales Representative for a newspaper. He is unsure that he will be able to succeed at such a position, and uses phrases such as: "I hope that you will contact me..." "I know that my qualifications are not very impressive, but..." The reader is likely to interpret these phrases to mean that Bob isn't really qualified for the position or that he doesn't really want the position. Clearly, Bob is not assuming an appropriate tone. He must consider that:  He is applying for a position as a Sales Representative.  He wants the employer to ask him to come in for an interview.  The employer will look for highly motivated and confident individuals. If Bob were to consider these things he may rewrite his cover letter to include such phrases as: "You can reach me at 555-2233; I look forward to hearing from you." "My qualifications make me an excellent applicant for this position..." The tone of the message has changed drastically to sound more confident and selfassured. 4
  • 5. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies What kind of tone should I use? Here are some general guidelines to keep in mind when considering what kind of tone to use in your letters and how to present information in that tone:  Be confident.  Be courteous and sincere.  Use appropriate emphasis and subordination.  Use non-discriminatory language.  Stress the benefits for the reader.  Write at an appropriate level of difficulty. The only major exceptions to these guidelines are when you need to write a negative business message, such as when you deny a job offer or a customer request. Be Confident You can feel confident if you have carefully prepared and are knowledgeable about the material you wish to express. The manner in which you write should assume a confident tone as well. As you prepare business documents, you want the reader to do as you ask or to accept your decision. A confident tone will have a persuasive effect on your audience. The reader will become more inclined to accept your position, and will notice the confidence that you have. Employers are inclined to hire individuals that appear confident and sure of their abilities. This does not mean however; that you should appear overconfident. This can easily be interpreted as arrogant or presumptuous. For example: Not: You must agree that I am qualified for the position. But: My qualifications in the areas of accounting and customer service meet your job requirements. 5
  • 6. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies Be Courteous and Sincere Consider the words and phrases you use in your document and how your reader will likely receive them. If you are respectful and honest, readers will be more willing to accept your message, even if it is negative. For example: Not: You didn't read the instructions carefully, thus your system has shut down. But: The system may automatically shut down if any installation errors occur. Use Appropriate Emphasis and Subordination You can help your readers to understand which of your ideas you consider most important by using emphasis and subordination. You can choose from a variety of strategies to emphasize an idea or to subordinate it. To emphasize an idea, place it in a short sentence. A short and simple sentence will most effectively convey an important idea. You can provide further explanation, sufficient examples, or evidence in following sentences. To subordinate an idea, place it in a compound sentence. Emphasis: Smoking will no longer be permitted in the building. The committee on employee health and safety reached this decision after considering evidence from researchers and physicians on the dangers of second-hand smoke. Subordination: The committee on employee health and safety has finished considering evidence, and they have reached the decision that smoking will no longer be permitted in the building. 6
  • 7. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies Ideas placed in the first paragraph of a document or message receive the most emphasis, followed by information placed in the last paragraph. You can subordinate an idea by placing it in middle paragraphs of your message because these paragraphs receive the least emphasis. Use active voice to emphasize the person or thing performing an action and passive voice to emphasize the action that is being performed. Active: Scientists have conducted experiments to test the hypothesis. Passive: Experiments have been conducted to test the hypothesis. Note: In most nonscientific writing situations, active voice is preferable to passive for the majority of your sentences. Sentences in active voice are generally—though not always— clearer and more direct than those in passive voice. You can recognize passive-voice expressions because the verb phrase will always include a form of be, such as am, is, was, were, are, or been. Another way to recognize passive-voice sentences is that they may include a "by the..." phrase after the verb; the agent performing the action, if named, is the object of the preposition in this phrase. The language you use to describe your ideas can also suggest how important that idea is. Use phrases such as "most important," "major," or "primary" when discussing ideas you want to emphasize and phrases such as "a minor point to consider" or "least important" to discuss ideas you want to subordinate. Emphasis: Our primary consideration must be cost. Subordination: A minor point to consider is appearance 7
  • 8. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies Use Nondiscriminatory Language Nondiscriminatory language is language that treats all people equally. It does not use any discriminatory words, remarks, or ideas. It is very important that the business writer communicate in a way that expresses equality and respect for all individuals. Discriminatory language can come between your message and your reader. Make sure your writing is free of sexist language and free of bias based on such factors as race, ethnicity, religion, age, sexual orientation, and disability.  Use neutral job titles Not: Chairman But: Chairperson  Avoid demeaning or stereotypical terms Not: After the girls in the office receive an order, our office fills it within 24 hours. But: When orders are received from the office, they are filled within 24 hours.  Avoid words and phrases that unnecessarily imply gender. Not: Executives and their wives But: Executives and their spouses  Omit information about group membership. Not: Connie Green performed the job well for her age. But: Connie Green performed the job well.  If you do not know a reader's gender, use a non-sexist salutation. Not: Dear Gentlemen: But: To Whom it May Concern: 8
  • 9. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies  Do not use masculine pronouns. Not: Each student must provide his own lab jacket. But: Students must provide their own lab jackets. Or Each student must provide his or her own lab jacket. Stress the Benefits for the Reader Write from the reader's perspective. Instead of simply writing from the perspective of what the reader can do for you, write in a way that shows what you can do for the reader. A reader will often read a document wondering "What's in it for me?" It is your job to tailor your document accordingly. Not: I am processing your order tomorrow. But: Your order will be available in two weeks. Stressing reader benefits will help you to avoid sounding self-centered and uninterested. Write at an Appropriate Level of Difficulty It is essential that you write at an appropriate level of difficulty in order to clearly convey your message. Consider your audience and prepare your writing so that the reader will clearly understand what it is that you are saying. In other words, prepare your style of reading to match the reading abilities of your audience. Do not use complex passages or terms that the reader will not understand. Accordingly, do not use simple terms or insufficient examples if the reader is capable of understanding your writing. A competent writer will match the needs and abilities of their reader and find the most effective way to communicate with a particular reader. 9
  • 10. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies What kind of tone should I use with a negative message? It is especially important to consider tone when you are writing a negative message. In a negative message, such as a document that rejects a job offer or denies a request, be sure to assume a tone that is gracious and sincere. Thank the reader for their input or involvement and carefully state that you cannot comply with their wishes. Follow this response with an explanation as necessary. Not: Thank you for offering me the position as General Manager at Simon's Inc. Unfortunately, I am unable to accept the position. I did not think that the position you offered me would utilize my communication and customer-service skills to the degree that I wanted. Therefore, I have accepted a position as Assistant Director at a different company But: Thank you for offering me the position as General Manager at Simon's Inc. I appreciate your prompt and generous offer. Unfortunately, I am unable to accept the position. I have accepted a different position that will allow me to utilize my communication and customer-service skills. In some negative messages, you may need to address faults or issues concerning an individual. When writing messages such as this, maintain a professional tone that does not attack the individual but that makes your position on the issue clear. For example: Not: I do not understand why you made such discriminatory remarks. But: Discriminatory remarks are not tolerated in this organization. 10
  • 11. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies Format Block (OPTIONAL) = means that you can choose to ignore this part. 11
  • 12. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies Legend: 1. Return Address: If your stationery has a letterhead, skip this. Otherwise, type your name, address and optionally, phone number. These days, it's common to also include an email address. 2. Date: Type the date of your letter two to six lines below the letterhead. Three are standard. If there is no letterhead, type it where shown. 3. Reference Line: If the recipient specifically requests information, such as a job reference or invoice number, type it on one or two lines, immediately below the 4. Date (2). If you're replying to a letter, refer to it here. 5. Special Mailing Notations: Type in all uppercase characters, if appropriate. (OPTIONAL) 6. On-Arrival Notations: Type in all uppercase characters, if appropriate. You might want to include a notation on private correspondence, such as resignation letter. Include the same on the envelope. (OPTIONAL) 7. Inside Address: Type the name and address of the person and/or company to whom you're sending the letter, three to eight lines below the last component you typed. Four lines are standard. If you type an Attention Line (7), skip the person's name here. 8. Attention Line: Type the name of the person to whom you're sending the letter. If you type the person's name in the Inside Address (6), skip this. 12
  • 13. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies 9. Salutation: Type the recipient's name here. Type Mr. or Ms. [Last Name] to show respect, but don't guess spelling or gender. Some common salutations are       10. Ladies: Gentlemen: Dear Sir: Dear Sir or Madam: Dear [Full Name]: To Whom it May Concern: Subject Line: Type the gist of your letter in all uppercase characters. Be concise on one line. If you type a Reference Line (3), consider if you really need this line. While it's not really necessary for most employment-related letters, examples are below.    SUBJECT: RESIGNATION LETTER OF REFERENCE JOB INQUIRY 11. Body: Type two spaces between sentences. Keep it brief and to the point. 12. Complimentary Close: What you type here depends on the tone and degree of formality. For example,     13. Respectfully yours (very formal) Sincerely (typical, less formal) Very truly yours (polite, neutral) Cordially yours (friendly, informal) Signature Block: Leave four blank lines after the Complimentary Close (11) to sign your name. Sign your name exactly as you type it below your signature. Title is optional depending on relevancy and degree of formality. 13
  • 14. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies 14. Identification Initials: If someone typed the letter for you, he or she would typically include three of your initials in all uppercase characters, then two of his or hers in all lowercase characters. If you typed your own letter, just skip it since your name is already in the Signature Block (12). (OPTIONAL) 15. Enclosure Notation: This line tells the reader to look in the envelope for more. Type the singular for only one enclosure, plural for more. If you don't enclose anything, skip it. Common styles are below.  Enclosure  Enclosures: 3  Enclosures (3) 16. cc: Stands for courtesy copies (formerly carbon copies). List the names of people to whom you distribute copies, in alphabetical order. (OPTIONAL) 14
  • 15. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies Semi-block Format 15
  • 16. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies Legend: 1. Return Address: If your stationery has a letterhead, skip this. Otherwise, type your name, address and optionally, phone number, five spaces to the right of center or flush with the right margin. Five spaces to the right of center is common. These days, it's also common to include an email address. 2. Date: Type the date five spaces to the right of center or flush with the right margin, two to six lines below the letterhead. Five spaces to the right of center and three lines below the letterhead are common. 3. Reference Line: If the recipient specifically requests information, such as a job reference or invoice number, type it on one or two lines, immediately below and aligned with the Date (2). 4. Special Mailing Notations: Type in all uppercase characters, if appropriate. (OPTIONAL) 5. On-Arrival Notations: Type in all uppercase characters, if appropriate. (OPTIONAL) 6. Inside Address: Type the name and address of the person and/or company to whom you're sending the letter, three to eight lines below the last component you typed. Four lines are standard. If you type an Attention Line (7), skip the person's name here. 7. Attention Line: Type the name of the person to whom you're sending the letter. If you type the person's name in the Inside Address (6), skip this. 16
  • 17. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies 8. Salutation: Type the recipient's name here. Type Mr. or Ms. [Last Name] to show respect, but don't guess spelling or gender. Some common salutations are       9. Ladies: Gentlemen: Dear Sir: Dear Sir or Madam: Dear [Full Name]: To Whom it May Concern: Subject Line: Type the gist of your letter in all uppercase characters. Be concise on one line. If you type a Reference Line (3), consider if you really need this line. While it's not really necessary for most employment-related letters, examples are below.    10. SUBJECT: RESIGNATION LETTER OF REFERENCE JOB INQUIRY Body: Indent the first sentence in paragraphs five spaces. Type two spaces between sentences. Keep it brief and to the point. 11. Complimentary Close: Type this aligned with the Date (2). What you type here depends on the tone and degree of formality. For example,     12. Respectfully yours (very formal) Sincerely (typical, less formal) Very truly yours (polite, neutral) Cordially yours (friendly, informal) Signature Block: Align this block with the Complimentary Close (11). Leave four blank lines to sign your name. Sign it exactly the same as you typed it below your signature. Title is optional depending on relevancy and degree of formality. 17
  • 18. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies 13. Identification Initials: If someone typed the letter for you, he or she would typically include three of your initials in all uppercase characters, then two of his or hers in all lowercase characters. If you typed your own letter, just skip it since your name is already in the Signature Block (12). (OPTIONAL) 14. Enclosure Notation: This line tells the reader to look in the envelope for more. Type the singular for only one enclosure, plural for more. If you don't enclose anything, skip it. Common styles are below.    15. Enclosure Enclosures: 3 Enclosures (3) cc: Stands for courtesy copies (formerly carbon copies). List the names of people to whom you distribute copies, in alphabetical order. (OPTIONAL) 18
  • 19. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies Types of Business Writing 1. Enquiries 2. Complaints 3. Replies to enquiries 4. Replies to complaints 5. Applications 1. Enquiries To seek information on products, services, prices, quotations, requesting catalogues, samples or concessions. Generally there are 2 types: ▪ Solicited Enquiries ▪ Unsolicited Enquiries Solicited vs. Unsolicited Letter Also means: With invitation vs. No invitation  If Peter requests for information based on advertisement (printed, online, etc) on a product, the letter/e-mail sent is a solicited letter.  If David gets/sends a sales letter without any invitation, it is an unsolicited letter. 19
  • 20. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies Enquiry Letter Structure Subject Heading This should inform the reader that this is an enquiry or request; e.g.  Enquiry about Textbooks  Request for Brochure  Query about Website First Paragraph This should tell the reader what you want; e.g.  Please send me... (for things that the organisation offers to send)  I would be grateful if you could tell me... (for things that are not normally offered)  I am writing to enquire whether... (to see if something is possible)  I would especially like to know... ( + a more detailed request) Second Paragraph This paragraph tells the reader why you are contacting his or her organisation, and gives further details of the enquiry.There are two reasons why you may contact an organisation: 1. You have contacted this organisation before, and want to again. 2. You have not contacted this organisation before, but you have heard about them. You should describe from where, such as from an advert or a recommendation; e.g.   I saw your advert in the HK Daily on Friday, 2 July 2010. Your company was recommended to me by Ms. Elsie Wong of Far Eastern Logistics. 20
  • 21. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies Final Paragraph This paragraph should contain a polite expression and/or an expression of thanks to the reader. The degree of politeness (and therefore the length), depends on how unusual or difficult your request is. Possible language includes:    I look forward to hearing from you. Thank you for your assistance. I appreciate that this is an unusual request, but I would be very grateful for any help you could provide. I look forward to hearing from you. Sample Dragonfly Inn 124 Victoria Street, Stars Hollow, Connecticut PO Box 715 5th July 2012 Stars Training Centre 20 George Hudson Street North Yorkshire United Kingdom Dear Sir/Madam, Enquiry about Quality Control Course I am writing to enquire whether your company could offer a course on Quality Control for our managers. I saw your advert in the Stars Hollow Daily on Friday, 2 July 2012, and the Quality Control Training Course (Ref.: QC 101). As described in the advert, the course might be suitable for us. I would like to know if it is possible for you to offer a 3-month training course starting before or, at the latest, on Thursday, 22 July 2012, for a group of 20. Could you send us some information about the teaching staff and the possible schedule for this course? I am looking forward to receiving your reply. Yours faithfully, Lorelai__ Lorelai Gilmore Managing Director 21
  • 22. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies 2. Replies to Enquiry Enquiries must be acknowledged promptly and in terms that establish goodwill. It is important to provide all the necessary facts and relevant information clearly and effectively. 2 types of replies: • replies granting requests • Replies refusing requests Reply to Enquiry Letter Structure Content of replies: Acknowledging receipt of an enquiry/request - Thank you for your letter of … regarding / concerning / in connection with … - I refer to your enquiry about / relating to … Explaining action taken as a consequence of the enquiry - I have (reviewed our available stock) … - I have checked/looked into/investigated (the possible approaches) … Making suggestions / justifying recommendations / pointing out pros and cons / hedging - I highly recommend … as / due to the fact that … - … would probably be more suitable because … - … seems to suit you better although … - Perhaps you should choose … even though … - I suggest that you (should) choose … - I recommend this item since … 22
  • 23. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies Apologising and rejecting proposals - While I appreciate your firm’s need for this information, I regret that … - Your proposal is of interest to us, and we have had consultations about it. - However, we feel that it will not be in our interests to … for reasons of (privacy). Stipulating action requested or to be taken - We shall arrange for … by …at the latest. - I shall see to it that … - Our Company will arrange for … Establishing goodwill and suggesting contact - I hope this suggestion/information will be useful to you. - I look forward to receiving your confirmation of … - Please feel free to contact me again if you have any further queries on … - Do contact me on 27615432 if you need further information. 23
  • 24. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies Sample Stars Training Centre 20 George Hudson Street North Yorkshire United Kingdom 5th July 2010 Dragonfly Inn 124 Victoria Street Stars Hollow, Connecticut PO Box 715 Dear Ms. Gilmore RE: Enquiry about Quality Control Course Thank you for your enquiry regarding our course on Quality Control for managers. We are very sorry to inform you that we will not be able to accommodate to your request for training at this current juncture. We require at least a 2 month’s notice for the 3month training course. I highly recommend that we start the course in September as we need to meet and discuss to understand your needs and requirements. You will see from the enclosed catalogue that the course can accommodate more than 20 people and we are most willing to plan for the logistics. We are offering you as our new clients a 15% discount on confirmation of this course. We look forward to your decision and reply Yours faithfully, Luke__ Luke Dane Marketing Manager 24
  • 25. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies 3. Letters of Complaint  Letters are written by consumers when they are not satisfied with the goods or services.  It should seek to bring about an improvement in a situation and an assurance that the unsatisfactory situation will not recur. The most common types of complaints: 1. Complaints regarding goods: a. Wrong goods b. Poor quality goods c. Damaged goods d. Wrong quality goods 2. Complaints regarding delivery of goods: a. Bad packing b. Non-delivery c. Late delivery 3. Complaints regarding services rendered: a. Poor service b. Uncompleted work 4. Complaints on financial matters: a. Delivery charges b. Excessive charges Complaint Letter Structure Letters of complaint usually include the following stages: 1. Background 2. Problem - cause and effect 3. Solution 4. Warning (optional) 5. Closing 25
  • 26. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies Background this section describes the situation; e.g.  I am writing to inform you that the goods we ordered from your company have not been supplied correctly.  I attended your exhibition Sound Systems 2012 at the Fortune Hotel (22-25 January) and found it informative and interesting. Unfortunately, my enjoyment of the event was spoiled by a number of organisational problems. Problem Cause:  On 30 June 2012 we placed an order with your firm for 12,000 ultra super long-life batteries. The consignment arrived yesterday but contained only 1,200 batteries.  Firstly, I had difficulty in registering to attend the event. You set up an on-line registration facility, but I found the facility totally unworkable. Effect:  This error put our firm in a difficult position, as we had to make some emergency purchases to fulfil our commitments to all our customers. This caused us considerable inconvenience.  Even after spending several wasted hours trying to register in this way, the computer would not accept my application. Solution  I am writing to ask you to please make up the shortfall immediately and to ensure that such errors do not happen again.  Could I please ask you to look into these matters? 26
  • 27. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies Warning (optional)  Otherwise, we may have to look elsewhere for our supplies.  I'm afraid that if these conditions are not met, we may be forced to take legal action. Closing  I look forward to receiving your explanation of these matters.  I look forward to receiving your payment.  I look forward to hearing from you shortly. Politeness The tone of complaint letters should not be aggressive or insulting, as this would annoy the reader and not encourage them to solve the problem. In addition, questions such as 'Why can't you get this right?' should not be included. Content  The content should contain enough details so that the receiver does not have to write back requesting more.  Legal action is not normally threatened in the first letter of complaint, unless the situation is very serious. 27
  • 28. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies Sample Fortune Goods 317 Orchard Road Singapore 7th July 2012 Attn: Mr David Choi Sales Manager Everlong Batteries 171 Choi Hung Road Hong Kong Dear Mr Choi Re. Order No. 768197 I am writing to inform you that the goods we ordered from your company have not been supplied correctly. On 30 June 2010 we placed an order with your firm for 12,000 ultra super long-life batteries. The consignment arrived yesterday but contained only 1,200 batteries. This error put our firm in a difficult position, as we had to make some emergency purchases to fulfil our commitments to all our customers. This caused us considerable inconvenience. I am writing to ask you to please make up the shortfall immediately and to ensure that such errors do not happen again. Otherwise, we may have to look elsewhere for our supplies. I look forward to hearing from you by return. Yours sincerely J. Wong J. Wong Purchasing Officer 28
  • 29. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies 4. Replies to Letters of Complaint Replies must be prompt in a courteous tone; even if you feel the complaint is not justified. It should serve the purpose of rectifying the mistake/situation and restoring business relationship. Types of Replies to Complaints 1. Replies granting the claim 2. Replies rejecting the 3. Letters Offering a They are written when the claim seller acknowledges Compromise his They are written by a Are written by sellers of mistake. They should apologize seller who, after giving goods/services when they for the mistake, explain how full consideration to the do not agree completely the mistake took place and buyer’s problem, finds with the complaint or inform the buyer customer that he has to reject the when both sides are at what action will be taken to buyer’s claim. fault. In this case, the rectify the mistake. seller may allowance make or give an a special discount on the invoiced cost. 29
  • 30. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies Reply to Complaint Letter Structure Acknowledging receipt of a complaint letter Accepting a Complaint Offering a Compromise Rejecting a Complaint Apology for the error or fault Regret at dissatisfaction Accepting the Complaint Rejecting responsibility for the problem leading to the complaint Acknowledge your error as well as that of the other party Reasons for the rejection Reasons for compromise A short explanation of the fault Investigation to be made Regret at dissatisfaction Proposal to settle the difficulty An offer to take goods back, make a replacement, give a discount etc. If a third party (another person or organisation) is to blame, direct the complainer to that party A concluding paragraph aiming at retaining the goodwill of the customer 30 Suggest a compromise that will benefit both parties
  • 31. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies 5. Job Application Letter or Cover Letter A complete job application consists of a cover letter and a resume. The cover letter is meant to highlight your individuality or personality, and to make you stand out from among hundreds of other applicants. Market yourself to create a positive first impression in the cover letter, so that the person will read your resume, shortlist you for an interview, and offer you a job. A poorly written cover letter is likely to get instant rejection from the employer. Cover letter should not be generic, i.e. you should not use the same cover letter for all the companies you wish to approach. This is because details for each job application are different for each of these companies. Generally, a well written cover letter should provide answers to:  Are you the kind of person they are looking for?  Do you have the relevant education, work experience and skills?  Can you handle the work demands, based on the job description? Guidelines for writing a cover letter:  Organise your thoughts carefully  Express yourself clearly and reasonably  Use strong action words to describe your achievements  Use active rather than passive voice  Avoid jargon  Avoid long sentences  Avoid bad grammar and spelling mistakes  Limit the length to one page only 31
  • 32. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies Layout of a cover letter 1. The opening o Include your name and address, the date, employer's designation and address, salutation and subject. 2. Introduction o Nominate the job for which you are applying for. o Indicate the source and date of the job information. o Indicate your interest, career objective or goal. 3. Sales pitch o Highlight the extent to which you match the requirements of the job. o State your relevant experience gained from industrial attachments, projects, vacation or part-time jobs. o Give a brief summary of your educational achievements, experience, qualities, capabilities and skills. o Mention your interest in the organisation and your reason for applying for that particular position. 4. Request for further action o Write that you look forward to a call or letter. o State your availability for interview. o Thank the person for his or her time and consideration. 5. The complimentary close o Remember to sign personally and include your name. State your enclosures such as your attached resume, academic results or references. 32
  • 33. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies Sample Cover Letter 1 Jamie Oliver 5-A, Jalan Permata 10 Brilliant Park Petaling Jaya 55000 Selangor 5th December 2012 The Human Resource Manager JobStreet Sdn Bhd Suite 4.3, Wisma Maran 338, Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman 50100 Kuala Lumpur Dear Sir/Madam, APPLICATION FOR THE POST OF CHIEF EDITOR I refer to your advertisement placed in JobStreet's homepage dated 2 December 2012 for the above position. Allow me to introduce myself briefly. I gained basic knowledge of journalistic reporting, feature writing and editing skills from my major in Media Studies from the University of Malaya. My present job as a senior editor in a news agency since 2008 provides me with work experience and on-the-job training in the above areas. I'm also well-versed in HTML and Pagemaker 6.0 as I have been actively involved in maintaining the web site of the news agency I serve. I'm able to meet deadline promptly as a result of many years of working at a fast pace in this agency. The attached resume of mine will provide you more information about my work experience. I'll be glad to attend an interview to furnish you with more details. I can be reached via e-mail jamieoli@mol.com. Thank you for your time and consideration. Yours faithfully, ----------------------------(Jamie Oliver) Enclosed: Resume, Academic Results, and References. 33
  • 34. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies Sample Letter of Inquiry This sample letter of inquiry is a good base from which to start. [Date] [Address] [Phone [Employer’s Name [Employer's Address] Dear [Name of hiring manager] Tittle (Be Specific) I have been informed of a job opportunity as [specific position or area you are applying for] by [name of referrer]. I am very interested in such a position because [qualifications or related work & interests]. I am currently employed at [name of organisation] as [title of position]. Or I have just graduated from [name of academic organisation].[Achievements related to the position] [Note: Read Writing about achievements guide] I look forward to discussing this job opportunity further and how I can contribute to the success of [name of organization]. Yours Sincerely, [Sign your name] [Type your name] 34
  • 35. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies How to Reply to Enquiries Content of replies: Acknowledging receipt of an enquiry/request - Thank you for your letter of … regarding / concerning / in connection with … - I refer to your enquiry about / relating to … - I have received your letter of … requesting information about … Explaining action taken as a consequence of the enquiry - I have (reviewed our available stock) … - We held a meeting on 21 January to discuss possible solutions. - I have checked/looked into/investigated (the possible approaches) … Making suggestions / justifying recommendations / pointing out pros and cons / hedging - The best choice would be … since … - I highly recommend … as / due to the fact that … - … would probably be more suitable because … - … seems to suit you better although … - Perhaps you should choose … even though … - I suggest that you (should) choose … - I recommend this item since … - In view of the fact that …, I would strongly recommend … as … 35
  • 36. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies Apologising and rejecting proposals - While I appreciate your firm’s need for this information, I regret that … - It will not be possible to … for legal reasons. We are bound to … - Your proposal is of interest to us, and we have had consultations about it. - However, we feel that it will not be in our interests to … for reasons of (privacy). - We are concerned that … Stipulating action requested or to be taken - We shall arrange for … by …at the latest. - I shall see to it that … - Our Company will arrange for … Establishing goodwill and suggesting contact - I hope this suggestion/information will be useful to you. - I hope this information will prove useful to you. - I hope that this information will help you to make decisions on your order. - I look forward to hearing from you. - I look forward to receiving your confirmation of … - I look forward to doing business with your company in the future … - Please feel free to contact me again if you have any further queries on … - Do contact me on 27615432 if you need further information. - Please do not hesitate to contact me on 27615432 if I can be of further assistance. 36
  • 37. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies Sample Letter of Inquiry The Virtual Community Group, Inc. 17 Park Road Rural Town, NH 1 July 2012 Jane Smith, Executive Director Xavier Foundation 555 S. Smith St. Washington, D.C. 22222 Dear Ms. Smith, Title: ___________________________________________________________________ I am writing to inquire whether the Xavier Foundation would invite a proposal from the Virtual Community Group, Inc., requesting an investment of $50,000 per year over two years to support our Enterprise 2000 initiative. This grant would provide part of the funds needed for us to train at least 1200 low-income entrepreneurs in rural New Hampshire in the computer skills they need to create sustainable businesses as we enter the twenty-first century. Your literature indicates that the Xavier Foundation is searching for innovative ideas to improve the lives of the rural poor; we believe Enterprise 2000 falls well within your area of interest. Information technologies are a promising solution to one of the primary obstacles facing the small rural enterprise: the geographic distances which inhibit networking with other businesses, and which segregate them from a larger marketplace. The Internet and other networks are now making it possible for entrepreneurs even in the most remote locations to communicate and do business on a region-wide, national, or even international basis. Working in conjunction with other organizations, Enterprise 2000 gives program participants technical skills training adapted to individual need; and, in collaboration with 37
  • 38. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies organizations which recondition and redistribute used computers, we also assure that they obtain the necessary computer hardware, at low or no cost. We believe that broadly-implemented technical skills programs such as Enterprise 2000 have the potential to transform the lives of many struggling entrepreneurs, and change the economic landscape of impoverished rural communities. Unlike many poverty alleviation initiatives, all of the Virtual Community Group programs are predicated on the assumption that these entrepreneurs already have 90% of what it takes to compete in the marketplace -- intelligence, ambition, initiative, and talent. After two years of experimentation and program development, the Virtual Community Group has fashioned a superb, easily replicable model in Enterprise 2000, and established a high degree of credibility among community groups, policy makers, and funders. With your support, we can make that 10% difference in the lives of these hard-working people and the future of our rural communities. Please feel free to call me with any questions. I look forward to hearing from you soon. Yours Sincerely, ( ) Executive Director 38
  • 39. Business Communication One (1) School of Foundation and General Studies REFERENCES A Guide to Business Communication (2010) C Bracken Meyers Business Communication Today (2009) John V. Thill and Coutland L.Bovee Excellence in Business Communication 9th Edition (2010) John V. Thill and Coutland L.Bovee 39