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English business writing souktel


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English business writing funded by Souktel and hosted by EHRD.

English business writing funded by Souktel and hosted by EHRD.

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  • 1. 1
  • 2. 2
  • 3. Today’s Topics1. Guidelines for Writing a professional email2. Guidelines for writing a professional business letter3. Guidelines for writing a professional cover letter 3
  • 4.  Write an email to your friend Ziad, telling him that you are attending a Professional Business Writing Course at the Experts Hall and will meet him tomorrow noon? The email should include any email details based on your knowledge. 4
  • 5. Know your organization’s e-mail policy.We are talking about professional email—notpersonal email. Do whatever you like inpersonal email, but remember this:“ In a study of 500 companies with ethicscodes, 90% of them monitored theiremployees’ email, and not all of theiremployees knew it” And those are thecompanies with ethics codes. 5
  • 6. Have a professional emailWrong: Right:  Tome_and_jerry_5@yahoo. ftamimi@yahoo.comcom Better:  Show your institutional affiliation if it will be impressive to your audience 6
  • 7. Make an outline or list of the main pointsand details you want to include in theemailDouble check any facts, dates, times, orother specific details that will be includedin the email 7
  • 8. Who are you writing to and what is your relationship with the person?If the person you are writing to is in a higher position thanyou, your email should use more formal language than ifthe person is someone in the same level position thanyou. If you have never met the person receiving your email before, you should use formal language in the first email to him or her.Once you have sent the first email and received a reply,you can choose to continue using formal language orchoose to use less formal language in future emails. 8
  • 9. Think about the reason you are sending theemail and decide if formal or informallanguage is better.If you are requesting a service or asking a favor,you should use formal language.If you are making a complaint, you should usestrong words to express your dissatisfaction orproblem but you must be polite.If you are introducing yourself, you should useformal language but you can use words orphrases that let your personality show throughas well.If you are writing a customer relation letter, youshould use formal language. 9
  • 10. Think about the reason for writing the email andwhat you want the person who receives the emailto do with it.If you want the receiver to do something for you, makeit clear. Tell the receiver exactly what action you wantdone.Tell the receiver if no action needs to be taken.If you want the receiver to respond by a certain date,write the response date.If you are negotiating or rearranging a meeting, writeyour demands or available times clearly. 10
  • 11. If the communication will require a lot ofback-and-forth discussion or if the subject isdelicate or sensitive you should call orspeak with the person directlyIf a discussion is becoming emotionallycharged, stop exchanging emails.Speak to the person directly to clear up anymisunderstandings. 11
  • 12. 12
  • 13. Don’t use unnecessary words and phrases thatdistract from the main idea of the email or mayconfuse the readerThe person reading your email does not have alot of time to read your email so you must makeit as direct as possible.Make the reason for writing the email clear atthe beginning and only add details that aredirectly related to the topic of the email. 13
  • 14. Avoiding difficult or complex sentencestructures will help you avoid grammarmistakes.Simple sentences will make the email easierfor your reader to understand, especially ifthe person reading the email is not a nativeEnglish speaker.Don’t use long paragraphs. Anything morethan five sentences can be too long. 14
  • 15. Remember that writing, is a form of indirectcommunication. Unlike having a conversationwith someone, you do not have a chance toclarify yourself by restating your ideas or usenonverbal signals to make your meaning clear.You have to make sure your readerunderstands what you want to say and gets theright “message” the first time. 15
  • 16. Think about how the email might beperceived by the reader. Are there any wordsor phrases that may make the tone seemangry, or disrespectful?Avoid trying to make a joke or say somethingfunny in an email. Sometimes what you think isfunny might be misunderstood by the readerand create a bad relationship.Use words that are specifically related to thetopic but define any words or phrases that youthink the reader might not be familiar with,especially words that are specific to a certaintype of job, field of study, or product. 16
  • 17. Anatomy of an E-mail MessageE-mail messages are similar to letters, with twomain parts:- The header contains the name and e-mail address of the recipient, the name and e- mail address of anyone who is being copied, and the subject of the message. Most e-mail programs also display your name, e-mail address and the date of the message.- The body contains the message itself. 17
  • 18. Always write the subject of the email on the subject lineRemember that business people often receivehundreds of emails every day. If you don’t writethe subject in the subject line the personreceiving the email might think it is SPAM or junkemail and delete the message. If the subjectisn’t clear they might delete the email as well,so make sure the subject is direct-don’t use toomany words. 18
  • 19.  If you just are providing information to the person, start the subject line with FYI. FYI—New Programmer begins Monday. Let the person know that he or she doesn’t need to do anything—it’s just for your information. If you just want the reader to review something, start the subject line with FYR. 19
  • 20.  Clarity Descriptive Critical informationNever, ever have a blank subject line. 20
  • 21. Subject: Date: Hi 9:17 am questions 10:11 am Meeting 12:44 pmOne more thing........... 3:02 pm Some thoughts 4:21pm 21
  • 22. Subject: Date: Party planning meeting rescheduled for 3pm 9:17 am Help: I can’t find the draft for the Smith Paper 10:11 amReminder: Weekly report due tomorrow (3/30) 12:44 pm Questions about the Math Assignment # 2 3:02 pmCongratulations to Fuad for winning Nobel Prize 4:21pm 22
  • 23. Subject: Date:Re: Question about Smith paper (was: please 10:11help with this!) am Changesubject line when necessary 23
  • 24. Subject: Date:Re: Re: Re: [Fwd: [Fwd: [Reminder: Deadline for 9:17 amSpring Semester Is Jan. 15]] Removeextra email prefixes 24
  • 25. Subject: Date: 9:17Thanks for the help today! <eom> <end of message> am 10:11Got your message <nm> <no message> am 12:44Today’s group meeting canceled <ssia> <subject says it all> pmSubject: 10/5 Meeting, 10am, Conf. Rm. A, On PASS Procedure EOM 25
  • 26. 1. Subject: Important! Read Immediately!!2. Subject: Meeting3. Subject: Follow-up About Meeting4. Subject: Announcement5. Subject: Do we need a larger room for Social meeting on May 14? 26
  • 27.  Now, how was your email subject that you prepared earlier today? Was it effective or not? 27
  • 28.  Limit to who really needs to know. Make it clear in text who has action and who is info addressee. Use BCC to protect Email addresses unless everyone knows each other. Watch Reply All. 28
  • 29.  Use address book with mail groups & validate often. › Avoid typing addresses free hand; many addresses are similar; watch auto fill. › Send same message to multiple recipients by editing message as new or cutting and pasting. 29
  • 30.  Make sure forward does not embarrass sender. › Get permission if in doubt. Fill in addresses last to avoid sending an incomplete Email by mistake. 30
  • 31.  It’s sneaky. Don’t use it unless you can 100% trust the person you are bcc-ing. Mostly, just don’t use it. 31
  • 32. Subject: MeetingHi Jim,I just wanted to remind you about themeeting we have scheduled next week.Do let me know if you have any questions!Best wishes,Mark 32
  • 33. Subject: Reminder of 10am Meeting Sched. 10/05 on PASSProcess.Hi Jim,I just wanted to remind you about the meeting we havescheduled for Monday, October 5, at 10:00am. Its being heldin conference room A, and well be discussing the new PASSProcess.If you have any questions, feel free to get in touch ( Phone:02-2234512).Best Wishes,Mark 33
  • 34. The Opening Tells the reader why you are writingThe Focus Tells the details about the topic The Action Tells what you want to happen and gives a time frameThe Closing Thank the reader and mention future communication 34
  • 35. From: reliablelandscapes@domain.comSubject: ProposalLynn,Did you get my proposal last week? Ihavent heard back and wanted to makesure.Can you please call me so we can discuss?Thanks!Fuad 35
  • 36. Subject: Checking On Reliable Landscapes ProposalDear Lynn,I just wanted to check that you have received thelandscaping proposal I emailed to you last week. I haventheard back and wanted to make sure it went through.Can you please call me by Thursday so we can discuss?This is when our discount offer expires, and I want to makesure you dont miss it!The quickest way to contact me is by cell phone.Thanks!Fuad Tamimi , OwnerReliable Landscaping, Inc.555.135.4598 (office)555.135.2929 (cell) 36
  • 37.  If you have never met the person, use Dr., Mrs., Mr. and Ms. . If you have met the person, and they have invited you to call them by their first name, go ahead and do so. However, if you think they might not remember that invitation (it was at a cocktail party or a long time ago) revert to the title. 37
  • 38.  If you have been exchanging emails with the person all day, it’s okay to skip the greeting and salutation as if you’re having one long conversation. 38
  • 39. Formal Greetings For a formal business email message, the guidelines are essentially the same as those for a formal mail letter. The greeting should include the word "Dear," the persons title (optionally) and name, and a colon (:) 39
  • 40. Informal Greetings If the email message is business-related but more personal or social in nature, such as a congratulatory, thank-you or condolence message, a comma (,) replaces the colon at the end of the greeting. 40
  • 41. From: Bob Anderson <anderson@rand-unix>Date: 21 Dec 84 11:40:12 PST (Fri)To: randvax!anderson, randvax!gillogly, randvax!normSubject: meeting ... we need to setup a meeting bet. jim you and i -- can you arange? im free next wed. thks. 41
  • 42. Subject: MEETING ON FY PLANNING, 2PM 12/28/2011, CONFERENCE ROOM 1There will be a meeting of the FY planning task force in Conference Room 1 on December 28, 2011 at 2pm. The Agenda for the meeting is attached.Best Regards,Ali 42
  • 43. Subject: Revisions For Sales ReportHi Jackie,Thanks for sending in that report last week. I read through ityesterday and feel that you need more specificinformation regarding our sales figures in Chapter 2. I alsofelt that the tone could be a bit more formal. The report isgoing to be read by our Executive Team, and needs toreflect our professionalism.Also, I wanted to let you know that Ive scheduled ameeting with the PR department for this Friday, regardingthe new ad campaign. Its at 11:00, and will be in the smallconference room.Please let me know if you can make that time.Thanks!Monica 43
  • 44. Subject: Revisions For Sales ReportHi Jackie,Thanks for sending in that report last week. I read through it yesterdayand feel that you need more specific information regarding our salesfigures in Chapter 2. I also felt that the tone could be a bit more formal.The report is going to be read by our Executive Team, and needs toreflect our professionalism.Thanks for your hard work on this!Monica  ================================================Subject: Friday 10/9, 11am Meeting w/PR DeptHi Jackie,I wanted to let you know that Ive scheduled a meeting with the PRdepartment for this Friday, 10/9, regarding the new ad campaign.Its at 11:00am, and will be in the small conference room. Please let meknow if you can make that time.Thanks!Monica 44
  • 45. Instead of: Use:Bold or italics *bold*Bullets -hyphens to begin phraseAutomaticnumbering 1.Regular typed numbering 45
  • 46.  Write in standard professional English with Capitalization and correct spelling. › Don’t try to impress. › Avoid chat speak, e.g., Keek 7alak & emoticons, . Don’t type in All Caps – like yelling. Avoid !!! Proofread & spell check. 46
  • 47.  Identify yourself clearly to cold contacts. › Hello, I am…The reason I am writing… › Hello, so-in-so suggested I contact you… Respond Promptly. › Apologize if you don’t. › Interim reply when too busy. Don’t shoot the messenger. Be polite and watch your email tone 47
  • 48. To: Female employeesFrom: H. HonchoRe: Dress codeDate: 1 July 2012Clients will be visiting next week. Jeans will not make the rightimpression. It’s time you started dressing for the office insteadof the beach. Leave your flip-flops at home! 48
  • 49. To: All staffFrom: H. HonchoRe: Reminder about what to wear to workDate: 1 July 2012During the summer, our dress code is business casual. Wethink “business casual” means clothes that feel comfortableand look professional.Men Women•khaki pants •casual pants and skirts•leather shoes… •leather or fabric shoes… 49
  • 50.  Use carefully. Cut and paste relevant parts of attachment into text of Email. Use URL links instead. › Upload attachments to website and cite URL. › is a free service. Recipients who do not know you may be unwilling to open attachments or click URLs. Post attachment first to avoid “Oops, here’s the attachment.” When you are sending an attachment tell your recipient what the name of the file is, what program it is saved in, and the version of the program. Ex. The attached file is in MSWord (.doc or .docx) under the name “LabFile.docx” If you use an open source word processor send files as RTF or PDF. 50
  • 51. Formal closings Informal closingsSincerelySincerely yours Best,Regards Take care,Best regards Regards,Kind regards Warm regards,Yours trulyMost sincerelyRespectfullyRespectfully yoursSincerely yoursThank youThank you for your considerationFollow the closing with a comma, a space, and thenyour name. For example:Best regards,Your NameYour Email AddressYour Phone Number 51
  • 52.  Use an appropriate signature Brief (4-5 lines) Informative provide all contact information Professional do not include pictures, quotes, animations 52
  • 53. Your nameTitleOrganization / EmployerEmail addressWebsiteFax, Phones & MobileFuad Sultan TamimiCapacity Development and Projects Management SpecialistABC Excellence Center for TrainingOffice: 02-2773888Fax:02-2773889Mobile: 0599-XXXXXXEmail: 53
  • 54.  Always spell-check before sending Set your email program to automatically check before sending Re-read email for other spelling, grammar and punctuation errors. Read it out loud Sleep on it 54
  • 55.  Negative comments about management Criticisms of staff or performance issues Bonuses or salary issues Gossip Humor or other ambiguities 55
  • 56. Common e-mail pitfalls Unintentional replying to all. Omitting the context of a reply. Shooting the messenger. Misaddressed recipients. Displaying addresses of recipients who are strangers to each other. Replying vs. forwarding. 56
  • 57. 57
  • 58.  Writing good business letters is an art that all technical people should master. When writing a business letter, the writer produces a one-sided conversation with the reader in the sense that he/she has to anticipate the readers questions and provide answers to those questions. 58
  • 59.  A business letter is a letter written in formal language, usually used when writing from one business organization to another, or for correspondence between such organizations and their customers, clients and other external parties. 59
  • 60. 1. It provides a record of the activity for someones file.2. It allows the writer to provide more context or explanation than is usually possible on a form.3. It helps the audience( reader ) remember what is to be done. 60
  • 61.  Business letters usually contain the following information (in this order): 1. Writers address (street, city, country). 2. Date of writing 3. Recipients name, job title, and address 4. Subject 5. Salutation or Greeting (Dear Mr./ Mrs./ Ms…..) 6. Message (body of the letter) 7. Closing 8. writers signature, typed name, and position of sender 9. In some situations, a business letter may also include the following optional information: 10. Writers Initials: typists initials ( if writer did not type letter). 11. Enclosures (Encl:) 12. Carbon copy Recipients (cc:) 13. Photocopy recipients (xc:) Note: The last four components are not always included. 61
  • 62.  There are three common formats for the business letter:1. The unblocked format.2. The semi-blocked format.2. The blocked format. 62
  • 63.  The first line of the paragraph is indented a few spaces The writers address, the date, the closing, the writers signature , and the typed version of the writers name and job title are indented two thirds of the way across the page. 63
  • 64.  The first line of the paragraph is lined up with the left margin There is a blank line between paragraphs to signal the start of a new paragraph. The writers address, date, closing, and signature are indented as in the unblocked format. 64
  • 65.  The first lines of paragraphs and all the other address, date, closing and signature information are lined up with the left margin. 65
  • 66.  When a writer is representing a company or organization, he/she should use the organizations letterhead stationery for correspondences with people outside the organization. When using letterhead, the location of the writers address, city, state will be changed These are usually given in the letterhead typed at the top of the page. If a letter requires more than one page, the additional pages are called continuation pages are typed on plain paper, not letterhead. 66
  • 67.  Letters normally begin with some sort of salutation. In formal correspondence, it is customary to use the recipients title and last name: “Dear Dr. Smith.” If the person does not have a title, use “Mr.” or “Ms.” In the American business world, it is becoming increasingly common to address people by their first name as a sign of goodwill. However, sometimes it is seen as disrespectful. So, try to make sure whether it is acceptable or not. If you do not know whether the reader is male or female, do one of the following:  Use the complete name: “Dear J.L Williams.”  Use both titles: ” Dear Mr. or Ms. Williams.”  Use a memo format: “ To: J.L Williams.” From: your name.” 67
  • 68.  Dear Personnel Director, Dear Sir or Madam (use if you dont know who you are writing to) Dear Mr., Mrs., Miss or Ms (use if you know who you are writing to. VERY IMPORTANT use Ms for women unless asked to use Mrs. or Miss) Dear Frank (use if the person is a close business contact or friend) 68
  • 69.  In the first paragraph, consider a friendly opening and then a statement of the main point. The next paragraph should begin justifying the importance of the main point. In the next few paragraphs, continue justification with background information and supporting details. The closing paragraph should restate the purpose of the letter and, in some cases, request some type of action. 69
  • 70. With reference to: your advertisement in the Times, your letter on 23rd March, your phone call today, 70
  • 71. I am writing to enquire about I am writing to apologize for I am writing to confirm 71
  • 72.  Could you possibly? I would be grateful if you could•I would be delighted to 72
  • 73. •Unfortunately•I am afraid that•I am enclosing•Please find enclosed•Enclosed you will find 73
  • 74.  Thank you for your help. Please contact us again if we can help in any way. If there are any problems. If you have any questions. 74
  • 75. I look forward to ... hearing from you soon. meeting you next Tuesday. seeing you next Thursday. 75
  • 76.  Yours faithfully, (If you dont know the name of the person youre writing to) Yours sincerely, (If you know the name of the person youre writing to) Best wishes, Best regards, (If the person is a close business contact or friend)76
  • 77. 1. Letter of Inquiry2. Letter of Order3. Letter of Appointment4. Many others 77
  • 78.  Itcontains the query to the information being required and an expression of the writers appreciation. 78
  • 79.  State clearly and specifically what is wanted. If there are more than three queries, use a numbered list. Give the reason for the inquiry. Include an expression of appreciation. A simple "Thank you" is enough. Include a self-addressed, stamped envelope with the letter of inquiry sent to an individual who has to pay for the postage when giving his own reply. 79
  • 80. 80
  • 81.  State clearly, accurately and completely the description of the item being purchased (exact name of the item, quantity desired, size, color, weight, finish, price and model). Give the address where the goods will be delivered. Give the price and the mode of payment, (check or money order, credit card, cash on delivery or charge to account). Mention desired method of shipment (air express, truck, parcel post) 81
  • 82. 82
  • 83.  Individuals appointed to certain positions, committees or functions should be notified and informed of this task assigned to them through letters of appointment. 83
  • 84.  the nature of appointment; the services/duties that the appointee should render or perform; the term of office of the appointee; and The privileges attached to the position that the appointee is holding (optional). 84
  • 85. 85
  • 86. 86
  • 87. 87
  • 88.  A cover letter’s purpose is to get your resume read. 88
  • 89.  A business letter that accompanies a resume. Informs reader of your purpose and requests as in-person meeting. Highlights and directs attention to important information in the resume. 89
  • 90.  Introduces You; Your Resume Summarizes Appropriate Aspects of your Education or Experience States briefly how your Qualifications relate to the Job Indicates if you have included a Resume, Writing Sample, Transcript, or other documents Requests an Interview 90
  • 91.  Contact Information Employer Contact Information Email Cover Letter Contact Section Cover Letter Salutation Body of Cover Letter Cover Letter Closure 91
  • 92.  The first section of a written or uploaded cover letter should include your contact information: Your Name Your Address Your City, State, Zip Code Your Phone Number Your Mobile Number Your Email Address 92
  • 93.  If you have contact information of the employer, list it below your contact information. If not, leave this section off your cover letter. 93
  • 94.  Its important to include an appropriate salutation at the beginning of the cover letter or message. If you have a contact person for your letter, be sure to include their name in your letter. 94
  • 95.  Cover Letter Salutation Examples Dear Mr. Jones, Dear Ms. Jones, Dear Jane Doe, Dear Dr. Haven , When You Dont Have a Contact Person If you dont have a contact person of the company either leave off the salutation from your cover letter and start with the first paragraph of your letter or use a general salutation. General Salutations for Cover Letters Dear Hiring Manager To whom it may concern Dear Human Resources Manager Dear Sir or Madam 95
  • 96.  The body of your cover letter lets the employer know what position you are applying for, why the employer should select you for an interview, and how you will follow-up. This section of your cover letter should include: First Paragraph - Why you are writing Middle Paragraphs - What you have to offer to the employer (be specific) Final Paragraph - How you will follow-up 96
  • 97.  The first paragraph of your letter should include information on why you are writing. Mention the position you are applying for and where you saw the listing. Include the name of a contact, if you have one. 97
  • 98. Please accept my application for theteaching assistant position advertised on theEnglishPAL Website. I would like to continue todevelop my teaching skills while creating achallenging and fun learning environment forstudents. The middle school age group isparticularly appealing to me, becausestudents are very impressionable, interested inlearning, and open to new concepts. 98
  • 99.  The next section of your cover letter should describe what you have to offer the employer. Make strong connections between your qualifications and the position requirements. Mention specifically how your skills and experience match the job you are applying for. Use several shorter paragraphs or a bulleted list of your qualifications rather than one large block of text. 99
  • 100. I am very well qualified and would be an asset tothe school because of my experience working asa teaching assistant for XYZ School. I haveworked with both elementary and middle schoolteachers, as well as camp directors to developcurricula that meet the needs of students. I enjoytutoring students and helping them buildconfidence in their ability to achieve, bothacademically and socially. In addition, I haveartistic and computer skills that will be an assetwhen developing class projects. 100
  • 101.  Conclude your cover letter by thanking the employer for considering you for the position. Include information on how you will follow-up. 101
  • 102. I have attached my resume for your review.Thank you for considering my application. Iwould appreciate the opportunity to interviewand look forward to hearing from you in thenear future. 102
  • 103.  When youre writing a cover letter or sending an email message to apply for a job its important to close your letter in a professional manner. 103
  • 104.  Sincerely Sincerely yours Regards Best regards Kind regards Yours truly Most sincerely Respectfully Respectfully yours Thank you Thank you for your consideration Follow the closing with a comma, a space, and then your name and your contact information, if youre sending an email message. For example:Best regards,Your Name Your LinkedIn Profile URL Your Email Address Your Phone Number 104
  • 105. 105
  • 106. Your NameYour AddressYour City, State, Zip CodeYour Phone NumberYour EmailDateNameJob TitleCompanyStreetCity, State ZipDear Mr./Ms. LastName,Please accept my application for the teaching assistant position advertised on Craigs List. I would like to continue to develop my teachingskills while creating a challenging and fun learning environment for students. The middle school age group is particularly appealing to me,because students are very impressionable, interested in learning, and open to new concepts.I am very well qualified and would be an asset to the school because of my experience working as a teaching assistant for XYZ School. I haveworked with both elementary and middle school teachers, as well as camp directors to develop curricula that meet the needs of students. Ienjoy tutoring students and helping them build confidence in their ability to achieve, both academically and socially. In addition, I have artisticand computer skills that will be an asset when developing class projects.I have attached my resume for your review. Thank you for considering my application. I would appreciate the opportunity to interview andlook forward to hearing from you in the near future.Sincerely,Your SignatureYour Typed Name 106
  • 107. What makes a Good Cover Letter? › No spelling or typing errors. › Address it to the person who can hire you. › Write it in your own words. › Show that you know something about the company and the industry. › Use terms and phrases that are meaningful to the employer. 107