0135140560 pp9a


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BSA105: Business English
Section 9: Reports, Proposals, and References

Yavapai College
Lindsay Henning
Associate Professor

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0135140560 pp9a

  1. 1. Pearson Business Reference and Writer’s Handbook Section Nine Reports, Proposals, and References
  2. 2. This section provides <ul><li>The fundamentals of writing and formatting informative documents written for a specific purpose and designated audience. </li></ul><ul><li>Styles for documenting print and electronic sources used in the course of developing business communications. </li></ul>
  3. 3. Objectives <ul><li>Develop long documents that present information in a style and format that enable the reader to digest the information and extract the essentials quickly and efficiently. </li></ul><ul><li>Document sources used in the course of developing a report or other long document. </li></ul>
  4. 4. Business reports <ul><li>Cover one topic and are written for various purposes: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>To present findings and data from study </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>To summarize activities </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>To analyze/discuss a specific issue or problem </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>To offer recommendations or solutions </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. Reports usually include <ul><li>Cover </li></ul><ul><li>Table of Contents </li></ul><ul><li>Executive Summary </li></ul><ul><li>Introduction </li></ul><ul><li>Body </li></ul><ul><li>Conclusion </li></ul><ul><li>References </li></ul>
  6. 6. Reports might also include <ul><li>Title Page </li></ul><ul><li>Acknowledgments </li></ul><ul><li>Foreword or Preface </li></ul><ul><li>List of Figures </li></ul><ul><li>List of Tables </li></ul><ul><li>Appendix </li></ul><ul><li>Glossary </li></ul>
  7. 7. Cover/title page <ul><li>Title of the report </li></ul><ul><li>Name/title of author(s) </li></ul><ul><li>Name/title of person/group/organization for whom the report was prepared </li></ul><ul><li>Date the report is distributed </li></ul><ul><li>Company logo, if desired </li></ul>
  8. 8. Transmittal document (optional) <ul><li>Brief description giving the title and purpose </li></ul><ul><li>A brief statement as to why the report is being sent (if applicable) </li></ul><ul><li>What action, if any, is expected of the recipient </li></ul>
  9. 9. Table of contents <ul><li>Format for Readability </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Front matter </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Main headings of body text </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Subheadings, if appropriate </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Back matter </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. Foreword or Preface <ul><li>A preface is written by the author of a report. </li></ul><ul><li>A foreword is written by someone other than the author. </li></ul><ul><li>A report might include one or both or neither. </li></ul>
  11. 11. List of Tables/Figures <ul><li>Include if the report has a large number of figures and/or tables. </li></ul><ul><li>Place in the front matter. </li></ul>
  12. 12. Acknowledgments <ul><li>A brief statement of appreciation listing people/groups who contributed to and/or assisted with the report </li></ul><ul><li>May be written in paragraph form or in list format </li></ul><ul><li>May be a separate section or placed at the end of the preface or introduction </li></ul>
  13. 13. Executive Summary <ul><li>A brief but thorough synopsis of the cof a report. </li></ul><ul><li>Provides an overview of major points and conclusions/recommendations. </li></ul><ul><li>Is essential in a long report. </li></ul>
  14. 14. Introduction <ul><li>A brief discussion of the report contents. </li></ul><ul><li>Writer uses it set the stage for the reader’s interpretation and response to the information. </li></ul>
  15. 15. Introduction may include <ul><li>Overview of the report’s main focus </li></ul><ul><li>Summary of the scope of information covered </li></ul><ul><li>Background/context of the information </li></ul><ul><li>Methods used for gathering the information </li></ul><ul><li>Explanation of how the information is presented </li></ul><ul><li>Highlights of key findings or conclusions </li></ul>
  16. 16. Body—main content of the report <ul><li>Logical order; clear and comprehensive coverage </li></ul><ul><li>Broken into topics and subtopics </li></ul><ul><li>Structured with clear, consistently worded and styled headings </li></ul>
  17. 17. Recommendations/solutions <ul><li>May be </li></ul><ul><ul><li>A list of possible actions to solve a problem </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Suggestions for organizational changes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>A plan for implementation of an idea. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The need to include recommendations depends on the purpose of the report. </li></ul></ul>
  18. 18. Conclusion <ul><li>Lists or summarizes the writer’s interpretation of the contents. </li></ul><ul><li>Is a standard element that needs to be included in most any report. </li></ul>
  19. 19. Recommendations and Conclusion <ul><li>May be placed at the end of major sections </li></ul><ul><li>May be placed only at the end of the report </li></ul><ul><li>All reports should have a conclusion at the end. </li></ul>
  20. 20. Document sources/ avoid plagiarism <ul><li>Plagiarism is the presentation of another’s intellectual property as your own. </li></ul><ul><li>When you paraphrase, summarize, or quote from sources documentation is necessary – for published and unpublished sources in print or electronic format. </li></ul>
  21. 21. Typical business reports use <ul><li>Footnotes indicated with a superscript number (or asterisk) at the point of reference in the text </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Source documented at the bottom of the page </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Bibliography (reference list) – an alphabetic listing of sources, always placed at the end of a document. </li></ul>
  22. 22. Parts of a source citation <ul><li>Name of author(s) or editor(s) </li></ul><ul><li>Title/name of publication </li></ul><ul><li>Publisher and location </li></ul><ul><li>Date of publication </li></ul><ul><li>Page reference (if applicable) </li></ul><ul><li>Volume number (if applicable) </li></ul><ul><li>Web site URL (if applicable) </li></ul>
  23. 23. A typical book source citation <ul><li>Blumenthal, Karen, Grande Expectations: A Year in the Life of Starbucks’ Stock, Crown, New York, 2008. </li></ul>Author’s name Title Publisher Location of publisher Date of publication
  24. 24. Proposal <ul><li>A document written to make a request, for example, funding a project, purchasing a service, or approving a reorganization of staff. </li></ul><ul><li>Its essential purpose is to persuade. </li></ul>
  25. 25. Types of proposals <ul><li>Internal/external </li></ul><ul><li>Solicited/unsolicited </li></ul><ul><li>Based on RFP (Request for Proposal) </li></ul>
  26. 26. Opening of a proposal <ul><li>Tells the reader the who, what, where, and why of </li></ul><ul><li>Needs to capture the readers attention </li></ul>
  27. 27. Methods for the opening <ul><li>An anecdote : a (brief) story/example that elicits an emotional reaction </li></ul><ul><li>A historical perspective : explanation of what has led up to the need </li></ul><ul><li>Statistics : studies and facts that dramatize the situation </li></ul><ul><li>A description of the current situation : what is creating the need </li></ul>
  28. 28. Project description <ul><li>A detailed discussion of the product, service, or project </li></ul><ul><li>Tells the reader what you are going to do and how you are going to do it </li></ul>
  29. 29. Description might include <ul><li>Facts and figures : data that supports the rationale for the proposed </li></ul><ul><li>Research : verification of the need for your project (formal studies, data, expert opinion) </li></ul><ul><li>Methods : details of how you will proceed to reassure the reader that you can do what you are proposing </li></ul>
  30. 30. Budget/Financial Impact <ul><li>Charts and graphs : showing proposed income and/or costs and allocation </li></ul><ul><li>Milestones and time lines : stages of development tied to funding </li></ul><ul><li>Staffing requirements : persons and/or position descriptions </li></ul>
  31. 31. Conclusion <ul><li>A brief summary of the “why” of the proposal. </li></ul><ul><li>Can include a sales pitch focusing on the proposers qualifications and unique ability to provide the service or product being proposed. </li></ul>
  32. 32. Developing long documents <ul><li>The examples in this Section focus on business reports and proposals, but the standard parts are explained and shown so that you may adapt them to the needs of other long documents as well. </li></ul>