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  • 1. Chetana hazarimal somani college of com. & eco. & smt. Kusumtai chaudari college of artsGroup no: 6TOPIC:  BASICS OF EFFECTIVE WRIRING  BUSINESS LETTERS- TYPES, 2012 PURPOSE AND LAYOUT Presented to: Prof. shivaprasad
  • 3. Table of contains Page no.1. Introduction to Basics of Effective Writing ………………………………..42. What is Effective Writing??.........................................................43. Principles of Effective Writing…………………………………………………….54. Basics Rules of Effective Writing…………………………………………………85. Common Mistakes in Writing…………………………………………………..106. How to Avoid Mistakes??.........................................................147. Introduction to Business Letters………………………………………………158. Basics Principles of Business Letters…………………………………………159. Physical Appearance of Business Letter……………………………………1810. Types of Business Letters……………………………………………………….2011. Purpose of Business Letters……………………………………………………2412. Parts of Business Letters………………………………………………………..2813. Forms of Layout of Business Letters……………………………………….3114. Conclusion……………………………………………………………………………..3715. Bibliography…………………………………………………………………………..38 3
  • 4.  Basics of effective writing INTRODUCTIONCommunication through words may be in writing or oral. Writtencommunication entails transmission of message in black and white.It mainly consists of diagram, pictures, graphs etc. reports, policies,rules, orders, instructions, agreements, etc. have to be conveyed inwritten form for proper functioning of the organization.In our society, the study of language and literature is the domain ofpoets, novelist. Language is considered as attractive art, fit forentertainment and culture. WHAT IS EFFECTIVE WRITING..??Experiences in school leave, some people with the impression thateffective or good writing simply means writing that contain no badmistakes i.e. no errors of grammar, punctuation, or spelling. In fact,good writing is just more than correct writing. It is writing thatresponds to the interests and needs of our readers.Briefly, here are the basics characteristics of goods and effectivewriting:  Good writing has a clearly defined purpose.  It makes a clear point.  It supports point with specific information.  The information is clearly connected and arranged.  The words need to be appropriate, and the sentences must be clear, concise, emphatic, and correct. 4
  • 5.  PRINCIPLES OF GOOD OR EFFECTIVE WRITINGManagers and leaders must express their ideas clearly, concisely,and completely while speaking and writing. If your writtenmessages are not clear or lack important details, people will beconfused and will not know how to respond.The process of writing involves three basics steps- Preparing,Writing, and Editing. 1. KNOW YOUR OBJECTIVE: Think before you write. What’s your goal? Make sure you fully understand the assignment. Are you writing a one paragraph executive summary or a five page report? Try answering this question: What specifically do I want the reader to know, think, or do? 2. MAKE A LIST: Write down the ideas or points you want to cover. If you have trouble getting started, try discussing your ideas with someone else. “Kicking an idea around” often helps you clarify your objective and fine tune what you are trying to finish. 3. ORGANIZE YOUR IDEAS: Just as it is difficult to find what you want in a confused desk drawer, it’s hard to find important ideas in a poorly organized message. Here are a few ways you can organize your ideas: 5
  • 6.  Importance Begin with the most important piece of information and then move on to the next most important.  Chronological Order Describe what happened first, second, third. It must be in ascending order.  Problem- Solution Define the problem, and then describe possible alternatives or the solution you recommend.  Question- Answer State a question and then provide your answer. Organize your ideas so the reader can easily follow your argument or the point you are trying to get across.4. BACK IT UP Have an opinion but back it up- support with data. There are a number of ways you can support your ideas, including explanations, examples, facts, personal experiences, stories, statistics, and quotations. It’s best to use a combination of approaches to develop and support your ideas.5. SEPARATE MAIN IDEAS Each paragraph should have one main point or idea captured in a topic sentence. The topic sentence is normally the first sentence 6
  • 7. in the paragraph. Each paragraph should be started by an indentation or by skipping a line.6. BE PRECISE AND ACCURATE Words like “large”, “small”, “as soon as possible”, “they” are unclear and imprecise. The reader may interpret these words to mean something different than what you intended. Reduce communication breakdowns by being specific and precise. Define terms as needed. The reader may not understand certain acronyms and abbreviations.7. WRITE COMPLETE SENTENCES A sentence is about someone doing something- taking action. They may be a manger, employee, customer, etc. The “Doing something- taking action” can include mental process such as thinking, evaluating, and deciding, or physical action such as writing and talking. A good rule to practice is to have subjects closely followed by their verbs.8. USE SHORT SENTENCES Sentences should be a maximum of 12 to 15 words in length. According to the American Press Institute, sentences with 15 or fewer words are understood 90% of the time. Sentences with 8 or fewer words are understood 100%. 7
  • 8.  Basic Rules of effective writing: BEING CONCISE:a. Use of short sentencesb. Start document with purposec. Creation of ‘single screen view’ messagesd. Elimination of unnecessary words i. E.g.. “Avoid bad miscommunication in email writing.” ii. (the word ‘bad’ is a modifier which is used unnecessarily)e. Use lesser number of words• PARAGRAPHING:a. Short Sentencesb. Short Paragraphs (2 to 5 sentences) i. Creates “white space” ii. Quicker to read iii. Engages the readerc. Opening Paragraph i. Five “Ws” - “Who?”, “What?”, “When?”, “Where?”, & “Why?”• Use of Lists:1) Benefits of using lists: a. Writer organizes thoughts b. Reader sees main points c. Important points are not overlooked 8
  • 9. 2) Formatting a list: a. Use numbers or bullets b. Items should be parallel c. Capitalize the first word of each point d. Be consistent with punctuation3) Spacing of a list: a. Double spacing makes reading easier b. Double spacing takes more valuable screen space c. Single spacing does not enhance the list d. Single spacing takes less room USE OF NON-DISCRIMINATORY LANGUAGE a) Nondiscriminatory language is language that treats all people equally. b) Use language that is free of religious, age and sexual bias c) Nondiscriminatory language can come between you and your reader. PUNCTUATION ,GRAMMAR AND SPELLING a) Use ‘Spell Check’ function. b) Always Proof Read document Tone a) How can I make sure my messages have the appropriate tone? b) Ask the following questions: a. Why am I writing this document? b. Who am I writing to and what do I want them to understand? c. What kind of tone should I use? 9
  • 10.  Common mistakes people make when writing letters: People have a tendency to avoid tasks for one of two reasons: 1) They find the task unpleasant or 2) They fear or know they are bad at it. Letter writing can fall into either of these two categories. The category you can do something to change, however, is the second one. Become aware of common mistakes people make when writing letters and you can improve your letter writing skills. Mistake #1: Not identifying the purpose of the letter. Whether your letter is for business or personal communications, you should state in the beginning what the letter is about. For example, you are requesting a refund for a broken product or you are following up on a proposal. Mistake #2: Not getting to the point. Just as when you dont identify the purpose for your letter, not getting to the point risks having the recipient miss the intended message entirely. If youre really writing to resolve a specific problem, dont spend three paragraphs apologizing in advance or talking about unrelated issues. 10
  • 11. Mistake #3: Redundancy. There are several types of redundancy, and all of them are equally unnecessary. The first, and easiest to identify, is using the same word more than once in the same sentence or more than three times in the same paragraph. An example is "She added a personal touch to the personal letter she wrote." The second type of redundancy that many writers miss in their own writing is repeating the same idea in different words: "Her message was effective because it was personal. Mistake #4: Using unfamiliar acronyms, abbreviations or technical language. Dont assume your audience knows all the abbreviations, lingo and acronyms that you know. An acronym is word formed from the initial letters of a name, such as CHOP for Childrens Hospital of Philadelphia. The same letters can stand for different organizations or meanings depending on where the person lives or other frame of reference. Or they simply may not know what it stands for. Mistake #5: Using ambiguous or confusing words. Similar to avoiding acronyms try to choose words with clear meaning, especially if your letter is attempting to resolve a conflict. Ambiguous subjects or misplaced descriptive phrases can totally change the intended meaning of your words. If you are having trouble identifying your own ambiguity, try writing your major points in very simple subject-verb-object format. 11
  • 12.  Mistake #6: Monotonous sentence structure. Counterbalance to mistake #5; you dont want to bore your audience to sleep either. Writing every sentence in the same exact structure and length is amateurish and disruptive to the flow of the letter Mistake #7: Inconsistency. Variety, however, should not be confused with inconsistency. There are two things that generally should not vary within a sentence or even within your letter: person and tense. Person refers to first (me, I, we), second (you) and third (he, them, etc.). Tense pertains to verbs or action happening in the past, present or future. Of course, there are always exceptions to this rule, such as occasions where” Mistake #8: Fragments, run-on sentences and missing or incorrect punctuation. A lot of people have heard of a fragment but dont recognize it when they write one. A fragment is simply not a complete sentence. Commonly used fragments are noun phrases (the man with the short beard and navy jacket), verb phrases (walking through the park and over the hill), and prepositional phrases (on a tree stump within the national park reserve). Mistake #9: Bad spelling and misused words. 12
  • 13. It ought to go without saying; misspelled words are a common mistake in letter writing. Not only does bad spelling make you look unprofessional, it also gives the reader the impression that you dont know what you are talking about. If they dont believe you, your communication is ineffective. Mistake #10: Not reading it over before you send it. The last example is an excellent reason to be sure to re-read your letter before sending it to anyone. Even if you think your letter is free of human error (which would be rare!), your letter may have been corrupted by computer error or unintentional (and sometimes misfortunate) auto-formatting. 13
  • 14.  How to avoid mistakes…?? Where Do Commas Go?The proper use of commas may seem difficult, but it really isnt. Themost common writing mistake is failure to separate two independentclauses with a comma and a coordinating conjunction. Plain English?When you write two complete sentences, sometimes you join themwith an "and" or "but." To be correct, a sentence like this needs acomma before the "and" or "but." For example, "I went to the store,and I bought some bread." Insert a comma before the "and" becausethe phrases on each side are complete sentences.You and Me... Me and YouPronouns can be tricky. The following phrase in incorrect: "Me andMolly are going to the movies." The pronoun "me" is incorrect. Takeout the other persons name, and read the sentence. You are left with,"Me are going to the movies." You wouldnt say that. You would say, "Iam going to the movies." The correct pronoun, in this instance wouldbe "I." To revise, "Molly and I are going to the movies."Can I Be a Writing Expert?The online writing lab of Purdue University offers many helpfulresources. You can check out their proofreading section No writer will ever be perfect, but you canavoid most common mistakes. 14
  • 15.  BUSINESS LETTERS A LETTER IS REALLY, “A PIECE OF CONVERSATION BY POST.” EVERY LETTER YOU WRITE BEARS A HALLMARK OF YOUR PERSONALITY. BUSINESS LETTER IS AN OLD FORM OF OFFICIAL CORRESPONDENCE. A Business Letter is written by an individual to an organization or an organization to another organization. Business letters are written for various purposes. You will be writing letter to other companies, firms, customers, government officers, employees etc. Their aim is to achieve a definite purpose, such as selling a product, making an enquiry, creating goodwill etc. BASICS PRINCIPALS OF BUSINESS letter: There are certain well accepted principals of good correspondence. Such principals provide guidelines to write or draft business communication more effectively. The principals are: A. PLANNING OF THE LETTER 15
  • 16. A business letter should be properly planned. The writer should know what to say, to whom, when and why. While planning a letter, the writer should consider the following factors: Assembling of facts: The writer should collect as much as information as possible. Up- to-date or latest facts must be collected. If the latest facts are not collected, then the information exchanged will be incorrect, inaccurate and incomplete. This may even annoy or irritate the receiver and the sender may not get the desired response. Selecting the Approach: It is not just ‘what to say’ is important, but ‘how to say it’ is equally important. One should always try to find out new and better ways to express the ideas or message to obtain the desire response from the receiver. At this stage, it is essential to understand the nature and the status of the receiver, and accordingly draft the letters. Knowing the purpose of the letter: A letter must have a definite purpose to serve. The purpose of the letter can be: To place or receive orders. To give or get information. To receive or pay money. To exchange views, ideas, etc. B. SINCERITY: 16
  • 17. A letter should be written with sincerity. The writer should makethe reader to understand that he is seriously and sincerely writingthe letter. The letter should be able to convince the receiver thatthe information provided in the letter is correct. C. SIMPLICITY:The letter should be written in an easy and simple language. Useof technical and commercial language must be avoided. Simplelanguage is only kind which people understand. D. CLARITY:The message must be clearly understood by the reader. For thetime the words should not be simple but must very clear. Wordswhich have different suggestion should be avoided. The readershould clearly understand the message of the letter in firstreading itself. Use of complex sentences is to be avoided. E. BREVITY:A letter should write briefly, and effectively. Every word shouldhave its own value. Study each and every sentence carefully.Consider its meaning and importance. Convey maximuminformation in minimum words. F. COURTESY:Every letter must be courteously worded. Polite and convincingwords go long way in generating positive response from thereaders. G. LAYOUT: 17
  • 18. The letter must have a proper layout. A layout is a plan which shows the position of different parts of the letter. Just like an architect’s plan which shows the number and position of doors, windows, rooms, stairways etc. In the same way the layout of the letter should shows the proper position of all parts of a letter, i.e. it must have a heading, address, reference number, data, salutation, subject matter, complementary close and the signature  PHYSICAL APPEARANCE OF BUSINESS LETTER A good business letter should have a pleasing appearance. i. PAPER: The paper used for writing letter must be of a good quality. Cheap quality of paper creates poor impression of the sender on the mind of the receiver. Therefore, to create good impression, the sender should use good quality paper.ii. LETTER-HEAD: It refers to the name and address of the sender. The letter-head must be well designed so as to impress the reader. The type, design of letter and the color used for such letters must be appealing. The letter head introduces the sender to the reader.iii. TYPING: The letter must be type neatly and without mistakes and correction. Overtyping must be avoided. Quality ribbons must be 18
  • 19. used for typing. Nowadays, commercial organizations use electronic typewriters and computers with lasers printers. iv. MARGIN: Proper margin must be kept on the left hand side and the right hand side. Also, necessary space must be left at the bottom of the letter. If there is less matter, then small sized paper must be used. v. SPACING: Proper spacing must be kept between the paragraphs. This is because it facilities easy and quick reading. There should be proper indenting. There should be proper justification on the both side. Nowadays, electronic typewriter provides the facility of justification. vi. FOLDING: As far as possible, letters must be folded with minimum folds. Too many folds give a crumpled look and create poor impression.vii. ENVELOPE: Proper size, color and quality envelope must be used. The address on the envelope must be neatly typed. Right letter must be placed on the right envelope. Nowadays, some firms use window envelope saves time and labor. It also gives an attractive appearance.viii. LAYOUT: 19
  • 20. There must be proper layout of the letter. All the parts of the letter, i.e. date, letter heading, reference number, etc. must be placed properly at the right place to give a balance look. TYPES OF BUSINESS LETTERS1) JOB APPLICATION AND ATTACHMENT A letter of application is one of the most important letters that an individual writes, because of which a particular individual future prospects and career depend. Therefore, it is very important for every individual to possess, the ability to write a good and effective letter of application.2) RECOMMENDATION LETTER A recommendation letter is a letter which expresses the personal opining of a referee. This referee is, generally, a person who has known the applicant for a certain period of time, in a particular capacity. The applicant seeks the referee’s permission before suggesting his name as referee, it is essential that he write in favors of the applicant. The referees balance his opinions in stamped and addressed envelopes given by the aspirant and send it directly to the company after entitling me ‘confidential’. It is therefore, advisable that the applicant select his referees carefully. 20
  • 21. 3) ACKNOWLEDGEMENT LETTER An acknowledgement letter is used to acknowledge a fact, action taken or a situation that happened. This letter is nothing but saying a thank you to someone who has helped or supported you in your difficult times. An acknowledgement is a spontaneous reaction whereas a thank you many times is used as a social norm. This sort of letter is used to convey your gratitude towards a person who stood with you in your bad phase. It is for a longer duration of time. A mere thank you works with a short term action. An acknowledgement is a great way to get response from other side. The letter has to be direct and should recall the past deeds and actions that you are acknowledging. This type of letter helps you in building a bond or strengthening the relationship with the recipient. This letter is also used to confirm that you have received a letter, report and you are working on it. The letter should have a positive tone. Do not bring any conflicts that you had in the past in the letter.4) ACCEPTANCE LETTER An acceptance letter is written to convey your acceptance of an offer. This letter helps the reader to understand and confirm individual’s acceptance. These letters are professional responses to the offers made by an organization or company. The letter has to be professional as it can be used to impress your employers. This type of letter has to be planned carefully and then neatly drafted. The letter has to address the hiring manager of the organization. The letter has to discuss the aspects of job like 21
  • 22. salary, benefits, insurance cover, etc. This will help the organization in understanding that there is no misunderstanding and all the terms and conditions are clear. This sort of letter helps in showing transparency from your side.5) AGREEMENT LETTER An agreement letter is a formal type of written communication. It is needed at the time of agreement between two parties. It contains all terms and conditions regarding the agreement. An agreement letter can be a written list of goods, services provided at the agreed price, terms. An agreement letter should not be vague in language and content and should state the purpose of the agreement. Mention all the details, specifications and conditions in an agreement letter. These letters acts as a model of communication between the customer, vendors, consultants and clients. This form of letters falls under the category of business writing hence should contain no ambiguity and doubt. The agreement letters should be crisp, direct and clear as far as the content is concerned.6) ANNOUNCEMENT LETTER An announcement letter is used to announce an event in personal or professional life. The announcement letter is a medium which helps the writer to give out information about a situation. Announcement letter is written for various purposes like announcing the quarter financial results to investor, announcing 22
  • 23. an event, business announcements, announcing an engagement or wedding, etc. Announcement letters are used both for professional as well as personal purposes. The announcement letter has to be direct and concise. The tone used in the letter is always positive. This letter has to begin with the main purpose i.e. announcement.7) SALES LETTER Selling is the index of success in business. It is the volume of sales that determines the rest of the activities in a business firm. Hence in the present days of keenly competitive business, businessmen want to sell their products or services as fast as possible so as to earn a suitable margin of profit. SOME FEATURES OF A SALES LETTER I. It is the least expensive and the most selective medium. II. It can reach any age, group, financial class etc. III. It can give complete information of a product. IV. It is a one kind of business communication where informality is not merely acceptable but is also appreciated. V. It compels more attention from the reader because it does not have to compete with other items such as advertisements in magazines or newspapers. It does not give a feeling of wasted efforts. 23
  • 24.  PURPOSE OF BUSINESS LETTER: Business letters are used for many purposes such as to make inquiries, send replies, to place orders or bank correspondences etc. The main and the basic function of the business letter is not only to convey your message to the person who receives the letter but also to influence the reader The single purpose of a letter is to convey thought. That thought may have to do with facts, and the further purpose may be to have the thought produce action. But plainly the action depends solely upon how well the thought is transferred. Words as used in a letter are vehicles for thought, but every word is not a vehicle for thought, because it may not be the kind of word that goes to the place where you want your thought to go; or, to put it another way, there is a wide variation in the understanding of words To request more information about a product To ask for a business reference To express your opinion about a product To thank a person As a sales tool to sell a productOne purpose of a business letter is to update customers on companyproducts.Business letters can be written to employees or managers, as well asclients and prospective customers. The business letter is a formaltype of communication that is usually typed on 8 1/2 by 11-inchwhite stationery paper. Business letters must be targeted to aspecific individual or group, have a clear and concise purpose, beconvincing and end with a specific objective, like a meeting date. 24
  • 25. I. Sales Efforts: The purpose of a business letter can include introducing customers to new products. In direct mail, a form of advertising, these letters are called sales letters. The sales letter is usually mailed with a brochure and order form. While the color brochure often features a companys products, the sales letter is designed to highlight the key benefits of the products for the consumer or business customer.II. Relationship Building: Purposes of business letters also include apprising or thanking business associates or customers. For example, a cover letter sent with a report can apprise business associates about the contents of the report. These letters are often very short, with bullet points highlighting key topics discussed in the report. Thank you letters can be used by companies to thank customers for a recent order. The objective of the thank you letter is to build rapport with the customer, and remind them of the companys products or website. Selling Incentive Sales: The purposes of business letters can include providing sales incentives for customers. Selling incentive sales letters are used to offer rebates, coupons or special deals to long-term customers. For example, a small printing company may offer a 20 percent discount to customers who have used their services for six months or longer. An alternative would be to offer the discount to customers who spend a certain dollar amount with the printer. Companies typically use selling incentive sales letters to promote existing products. 25
  • 26. III. Prevention/Solution Sometimes, a business must write a letter to acknowledge a complaint. This complaint could involve a customer service issue, damaged product or even an inaccurate shipment. Consequently, the company must write a letter to the customer that informs them what is being done to correct the error. Complaints can lead to potential legal problems. Considerations Finally, a company may write a business to a "lost customer" or someone who has not purchased products for a while, according to the Austin Business Journal. Internet, mail order and retail companies that use databases often have the ability to find these customers. Subsequently, they may write to these customers and offer them a special deal Delivering a Response Business letters can be sent to deliver a response directed at a request for something a person has applied for. These are usually sent to an individual from a business. Businesses or organizations can respond to an application for a job, funds, a scholarship, or admission to a program. The response can either be bad news, which is usually buried and cushioned between kind, polite words and advice, or good news, which often comes attached with a congratulations and further instructions. For legal purposes, response letters from businesses are always written as politely as possible so as not to excessively offend anyone. 26
  • 27. IV. Asking for Permission for a Project Business letters can be used for the purpose of asking the permission of a company to help with any project, such as to allow filming on company property. These types of letter answers the question "is this project reasonable?" to convince the company that if they do not help. They are the ones being unreasonable. If the project is reasonable, included are reasons why it will not hurt the businesss reputation, bank account and employees. Petitioning Something A business letter can be sent for the purpose of petitioning a problem that affects a group. This letter includes a description of the problem or opportunity, a statement of who it affects and approximately how many people are affected and the location of the problem. If the location is not a specific one, a list of examples may be included. 27
  • 28.  PARTS OF BUSINESS LETTERS The various parts of Business Letters are as follows:1. Letterhead: It refers to name, address, telephone number and such other details. It introduces the firm/ sender to the reader. The letter head must be attractively designed.2. Date: It refers to date, month and the year. A date in the letter has legal significance. It also helps for filing and referencing. Generally, date is written on the right hand side below the letterhead, but nowadays some companies write on left hand side. The date may be preferably written like this: 8th August, 2002’’.3. Reference Number: It helps for filing and referencing to both the parties i.e. sender and receiver. There are different ways of writing a reference number. It depends upon the requirement of the sender.4. Inside Address: It refers to name and address of the receiver/ addressee. This is always written on the left hand side. Whenever required Shri, Smt, Mr., Ms, M/s etc. must be type.5. Salutation: 28
  • 29. It refers to greeting to the addressee. It is written just below the inside address. Sir, Sirs, Madam, Madams, Dear Sirs, Dear Madam, etc. to be used depending upon the relations with the receiver. It is to be noted that in business letters, it advisable to address the party with his name in salutation for example, Dear Mr. Michael Vase. This gives a personal touch to the letter.6. Subject Line: It is necessary to mention the subject to which the letter relates. The subject line helps to sort out the letters and immediately the receiver may to come know the purpose of the letter. For instance, a complaint letter may contain a subject line like this: “Complaint against defective goods…”7. Body of letter: This contains the subject matter. It must be divided into paragraphs. Every separate idea or point must be presented in a separate paragraph so as to facilities quick and easy understanding.8. Complimentary Close: It refers to the regards or respect which the writer wants to convey to the leaders it must agree with the salutation. Salutation Complimentary Close Respected Sir, Dear Sir Yours faithfully Dear Mr. Sam Nair Yours sincerely 29
  • 30. It is to be noted that some organizations used “yours truly” instead of “yours faithfully”. In countries like Japan and Germany, “yours sincerely” is used even when the salutation is “Dear Sir”.9. Signature: Every letter contains the signature of the sender. It has legal significance. It reveals the identity of the sender. The signature must be always be handwritten and not rubber stamped, especially on important letter. Below the signature, the name and designation must be type. If a person is signing on behalf of boss or someone, then ‘for’ or ‘Per Pro’ should be type before the signature.10. Identification Mark: At the bottom of the letter, there may be initial of the clerk, who types the letter. This mark is put to hold the typist responsible for any grammatical or other errors, if any. However, the sender is overall responsible for the letter.11. Postscript: The writer wants to insert additional matter after the completion of the letter, and then such matter is written by indicating a P.S. As far as possible, Post-Script must be avoided, as its shows carelessness of the writer.12. Enclosures: 30
  • 31. They are document send along with the letter. If there are any enclosures, then they should be stated serially at the end of the letter.  LAYOUT OF BUSINESS LETTERS: The layout is the ‘arrangement’ or ‘planned setting’ of the parts of the letter. The format of the letter includes the margin, the space around the parts of letter and balanced arrangement of the obligatory parts of a letter. A Letter may follow any suitable layout but care should be taken to ensure that the layout is correct and complete. The following are some of the layouts used by firms for correspondence.i. The Indented Format: This is the traditional style of letter writing and in this style the lines are indented 5 to 10 spaces inside the left hand margin. The date and subscription are written on the right hand side towards the middle of the paper. The reference number is written on the left hand side. The subject heading is written towards the middle while the inside address is also indented. The letter becomes well balanced after all the setting of the matter. The writer of the letter should be careful about the full-stops, commas and other punctuation marks. The main characteristics of INDENTED STYLE are as follows: 31
  • 32. (a) A margin of about 1½” is adopted on both sides left and right of the paper. (b) The paragraphs and inside address in the body of letter are indented 5 to 10 spaces inside. The first line of the inside address starts from the left hand margin and the rest of other lines are indented. (c) The date and subscription are written on right hand side of paper. (d) All the paragraphs in a letter are separated by double line spacing. (e) The first line of each paragraph is indented and the rest of the lines are blocked on the left hand margin.ii. MODIFIED INDENTED STYLE: It is the new form of INDENTED STYLE and in this all things are like fully indented. The inside address is written as fully blocked and there is no indentation in the inside address while all the other things remain the same. The main characteristics of MODIFIED STTLE are as follow: a. The date, complimentary close and signature sections begin at the horizontal centre of the page or are placed so that they end near the right –hand margin. b. Attention, and subject lines may be indented, centered or begin at the left margin, where all other parts begin. c. Thus, in this format, most parts in this letter begin at the left margin but the date and the complimentary closing and signature lines end at right margin. 32
  • 33. d. When this letter is filed, it is easy to see the data and the name of the letter writer, by quickly going through the right side of the pages. The page also looks balanced and neat. e. In this style every line starts from the left hand margin. The reference number, date, complimentary close of all letter are written or typed on the left hand margin and this style is called fully blocked. In this style the entire left hand margin is blocked by writing the matter on left hand side and there are no indentations inside the margin. This style is the most modern style of letter writing in business.iii. Fully Blocked: In this style every line starts from the left hand margin. The reference number, date, complimentary close of all letter are written or typed on the left hand margin and this style is called fully blocked. In this style the entire left hand margin is blocked by writing the matter on left hand side and there are no indentations inside the margin. This style is the most modern style of letter writing in business. The main characteristics of FULLY BLOCKED STYLE can be described in the following points: (a) Each and every part of the letter is written towards the left hand margin of the paper. Every line starts from the left hand margin. (b) The full stops and commas (pattern of punctuation) are implied only where these are absolutely necessary to maintain the accuracy of the letter.iv. Semi-Blocked: 33
  • 34. In this style of letter writing there are neither too many indentations nor the matters blocked on the left hand margin of the paper. The inside address and paragraph commence on the left hand side and the date and subscription or complimentary close are written on the right hand side. So the letter is neither one sided heavy or fully blocked nor fully-indented so it is called SEMI-BLOCKED. The main characteristics of SEMI BLOCKED STYLE are as follows: (1) The reference number, inside address, salutations, subject- Heading and all paragraphs of letter commence from the left- hand margin, similar to fully blocked style. (2) The date and subscription are written or typed on the right hand side of the paper. (3) Like in fully blocked letter, the open pattern of punctuations (meaning not using full stops and commas strictly) is used in this style of letter writing.v. Hanging Paragraph: In this style of letter writing, the paragraphs are displayed in such a way that they appear to be hanging on a peg. In this style, the first line of paragraph is fully blocked and the remaining lines are continuously indented 5 to 7 spaces inside the left hand margins. It is just reverse to the Indented style of letter writing because in this style the first line is not indented and the remaining lines are indented. The main characteristics of HANGING PARAGRAPH are as follows: 34
  • 35. (1) The reference number is written or typed on the left hand side and the date is typed or written towards the right of the paper, below the letter heading. The inside address is in fully blocked form. (2) The first few words of each paragraph are typed or written from the left hand margin, similar to fully blocked style. The remaining lines of paragraph are indented 5 to 7 spaces inside. (3) The complimentary close or subscription is written or typed in the normal position on right hand side towards the middle and is indented. The style is used rarely and is preferred for letter containing many topics or paragraphs. The disadvantage of this style is that it is time consuming due to many indentations. Secondly the appearance of the letter is not attractive as compared to letters written in other Norma-Simplified or Memorandum: This style of letter writing is implied in inter office correspondence or internal written communication in offices. In this style there is no salutation, no subscription as in business letters and the matter is written directly in a simplified manner. In writing or typing the body of a letter, fully blocked style is generally used. The main characteristics of MEMORANDUM style of writing can be described as: 35
  • 36. (1) The formal salutation “Dear Sir”, “Dear Sirs, “Sir” etc and thecomplimentary close like “Yours faithfully” or “Yours truly” etc arenot used.(2) The subject heading of the letter is written or typed in fullyblocked style.(3) In this style, the body of a letter is generally typed or writtenwith fully blocked style of letter writing by starting every line fromthe left hand margin. The usual spacing of double line is leftbetween the paragraphs.(4) The sender’s name and address are typed or written towardsthe right hand side at the end of the letter in bold capital lettersand the typist’s initials are written at the left hand bottom corner.The typist’s initial are written for record purposes and forestablishing as to who had typed the letter. 36
  • 37.  CONCLSION:A successful business letter is characterized by country,clarity and conciseness. Writing letter becomes a necessityfor business transaction. While writing, the reader’sinterest should be kept in mind. This would ensure quicktransmission of message and evoke the desired response.Let each letter have one main idea or point and this shouldbe communicated in plain and easy to understandlanguage. 37
  • 38.  Bibliography1. Manan Prakashan2. Vipul Prakashan3. Rishabh Prakashan4. Business Communication and Report Writing-R.C. Sharma and Krishna Mohan 38