Wriiten communiaction

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Wriiten communiaction

  1. 1. Written communication has great significance in today’s business world. It is an innovative activity of the mind. Effective written communication is essential for preparing worthy promotional materials for business development. Speech came before writing. But writing is more unique and formal than speech. Effective writing involves careful choice of words, their organization in correct order in sentences formation as well as cohesive composition of sentences. Also, writing is more valid and reliable than speech. But while speech is spontaneous, writing causes delay and takes time as feedback is not immediate. Advantages of Written Communication Written communication helps in laying down apparent principles, policies and rules for running of an organization. It is a permanent means of communication. Thus, it is useful where record maintenance is required. It assists in proper delegation of responsibilities. While in case of oral communication, it is impossible to fix and delegate responsibilities on the grounds of speech as it can be taken back by the speaker or he may refuse to acknowledge. Written communication is more precise and explicit. Effective written communication develops and enhances an organization’s image. It provides ready records and references. Legal defenses can depend upon written communication as it provides valid records. Disadvantages of Written Communication Written communication does not save upon the costs. It costs huge in terms of stationery and the manpower employed in writing/typing and delivering letters. Also, if the receivers of the written message are separated by distance and if they need to clear their doubts, the response is not spontaneous. Written communication is time-consuming as the feedback is not immediate. The encoding and sending of message takes time. Effective written communication requires great skills and competencies in language and vocabulary use. Poor writing skills and quality have a negative impact on organization’s reputation. Too much paper work and e-mails burden is involved
  2. 2. he Recruitment and Employment Commission (REC) says that around half of all CVs received by recruitment consultants contain spelling or grammatical errors. Candidates aged between 21 and 25 are most likely to make these mistakes and graduates in this age group are, surprisingly, twice as likely to make mistakes as those who did not go on to university. http://careers.guardian.co.uk/cv-mistakes Even something as basic as the name of an employer, or an individual recruiter, is often spelled incorrectly. The former Graduate Recruitment Manager at City law firm Mayer Brown found that 20% of applicants got the firm’s name wrong (one hopes that these people did not also apply to another law firm called Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (UK) LLP!). Your covering letter is an important part of your job application, as it demonstrates your writing style better than your CV (which is usually more brief and factual). For advice on writing a covering letter see www.kent.ac.uk/careers/cv/coveringletters.htm Written Communication involves expressing yourself clearly, using language with precision; constructing a logical argument; note taking, editing and summarising; and writing reports. There are three main elements to written communication structure (the way the content is laid out) style (the way it is written) content (what you are writing about) Here are the results of a survey of graduate recruiters at our careers fair on: "What are the key skills that students should be helped to develop during their time at University?" Number of employers voting for each skill Communication 9 Teamwork 3 Presentation skills 5 Enthusiasm/motivation 3
  3. 3. Structure and layout can be relatively quickly learnt but learning how to write good quality content takes much longer. Structuring A good structure will help you to express yourself more clearly, whether in a dissertation, an essay, a job application letter or a CV. The following tactics may help you to structure your writing: Work ethic: attitude for work 3 Leadership 2 Critical thinking/logic 2 Commercial awareness 2 Computing skills 2 Clarify your thoughts and the purpose of your communication before you start writing. In business communications, clarity is more important than style. Identify the key points, facts and themes Decide on a logical order for what you have to say Compose a strong introduction and ending. The first will make an immediate and positive impression on the reader; the second will remain in their mind after they have finished reading Use short paragraphs and sentences rather than long, rambling ones. Keep to one idea per paragraph and put your point in the first line, then add the supporting information. Help key points to stand out by the use of headings, sub-headings and bullet points. This will allow your reader to quickly scan your message for the main points. Writing in a style appropriate to the audience All good communicators should think about their readers: How much information and detail will they need? "A single spelling mistake can cut Should you use specialist terms or should you online sales in half." “translate” these to make yourself understood by a generalist reader? How formal or informal should your writing be? A study by the University of Hertfordshire on over 500 companies found that poor spelling or grammar A scientific paper aimed at an audience of nonalienated 77% of the companies scientists would have to be written in simpler and surveyed. For example: less technical language. A report in the Financial Times would be written in a very different style from one covering the same issue in the Sun A lawyer giving advice to a client would not go into the same amount of details as to legal The greatest attractors for employers were relevant work experience (46%), followed by a "good work ethic" (43%).
  4. 4. precedents and arguments as a law student would when writing an academic essay. Emails sent with job applications should be treated more formally than emails to friends and family! "Bad writers, and especially scientific, political, and sociological writers, are nearly always haunted by the notion that Latin or Greek words are grander than Saxon ones, and (use) unnecessary words like expedite, ameliorate, predict, extraneous, deracinated, clandestine, subaqueous." George Orwell Simplicity: Checklist Look at a piece of writing you have had to do (i.e. an essay, report or job application) and check it against the following points. Structure (the way the content is laid out) Is the layout clear and easy to follow? Do headings stand out (e.g. are they in a larger font size)? Is the information arranged in a logical sequence with a beginning (introduction), middle, and end (conclusion)? Does the introduction clearly state the subject and purpose? Does it briefly summarise the content? Style (the way it is written) The four basic premises of writing are clarity, brevity, simplicity, and humanity. William Zinsser Beauty of style and harmony and grace and good rhythm depend on simplicity. Plato Simplicity is the final achievement. After one has played a vast quantity of notes and more notes, it is simplicity that emerges as the crowning reward of art. Chopin Hard writing makes easy reading. Easy writing makes hard reading. William Zinsser In other words writing improves in proportion to the amount of effort put in. Does it look neat, and elegant? As a careers adviser, I can tell Is it concise, with an exact use of words and within 30 seconds if a CV has economy of style? been worked on for 1 hour or 10 "If in doubt, cut it out!". Learn to be laconic! hours! For example instead of saying forward planning, See our page on simplicity in CVs just say planning - there is no such thing as backward planning! Is is simple, direct and lucid? (See table on right) For example a bureaucrat would write: Political organisation administered directly via the populace, intended for the employment of the general community, on behalf of each and every one of the citizens of the nation. Abraham Lincoln wrote: Government of the people, by the people, for the people. Are paragraphs too long?
  5. 5. Paragraphs of less than 10 lines are easier to read. Is a blank line left between paragraphs to aid clarity? Are sentences too long? A sentence should contain just one idea. Sentences with more than 30 words Use single words rather than clichés: should normally be split. Let us have an end to such phrases as Is the first sentence interesting/ Does it these: "it is also important to bear in draw the reader in? mind the following considerations" .... Have you avoided unnecessary jargon? "or consideration should be given to the Is the style suitable for the intended possibility of carrying into effect". Most audience? A scientific report aimed at an audience of these woolly phrases are mere of non-scientists would have to be padding, which can be left out written in simpler and more jargon free altogether, or replaced by a single word. language. Are bulleted lists used where Churchill appropriate? Have you used short, concrete, familiar Some Kent student examples of how words rather than long, obscure, not to do it: complex words? Use the active words where possible Within the workplace arena = at work rather than the passive voice? "It is At this point in time = now recommended ...." should be replaced by "We recommend" as this is simpler and In addition to the aforementioned = more direct also Have you kept wordy phrases to a Acquainted with = told minimum? Effective practitioner = teacher Have you avoided repetition? The Plain English Campaign recommends sans serif fonts (e.g. Arial, Verdana) such as this, as clearer and easier to read than serif fonts (e.g. Times New Roman, Garamond) such as this. Content (what you are writing about) Using language with precision Correct spelling, grammar and punctuation. Use your spell checker but don’t rely on it completely: a spell-checker failed to pick up the following errors: administrator in a busty office I have all the right qualities to make an excellent manger I have a long-standing interest in
  6. 6. Have you carefully checked the spelling and pubic relations punctuation? I attended a fist aid course with St. Have you thought through in advance what you John Ambulance want to say? Studied for an A-level in Art & Have you a clear objective? Design at Canterbury Collage Have you listed the essential points you wish to In my spare time I enjoy hiding my make? horse Have you made these points clearly? I was responsible for sock control Have you developed your argument in a logical I hope to hear from you shorty way? Have you allowed detail to obscure the main issues? Is the content positive and constructive? “We receive standardised letters from Have you shown an interest in the reader by graduates which show no thought… writing with warmth, sensitivity and friendliness? They use text speak in covering Have you edited it through several revisions, letters...” Graduate Recruiter honing the text until it is just right? Have you left it overnight if possible: your mind will assimilate it better and you will come back with a fresh view. The writing rules of George Orwell Never use a long word where a short one will do. If it is possible to cut a word out, always cut it out. Never use the passive voice (e.g. "Bones are liked by dogs") where you can use the active voice ("Dogs like bones"). Never use jargon if you can think of an everyday equivalent. "Cut every page you write by one third". Hillary Mantel, author of Wolf Hall How will employers assess your written communication skills? Your very first contact with a prospective employer is likely to be in writing. When employers read application forms, CVs and covering letters they are not just looking at WHAT you have to say about yourself, your skills and your experience but also at HOW you say it. Application Forms Application forms often ask you to write a piece of text in response to questions such as the following: "Please write about yourself in no more than 4000 characters [approx. 750 words]. You may wish to mention any posts of responsibility held at school or subsequently, any regular employment or other work experience, any sporting or other achievements and any
  7. 7. particular interests and personal qualities which are relevant). Please also state briefly why you are making this application” Describe a time you were faced with a particularly difficult situation or problem. What did you do? (200 words) What are your interests and hobbies? What have you contributed and what do you get out of them? (no word limit, but this is the only question on one A4 page of a paper form!) EVIDENCE FOR WRITING SKILLS YOU COULD USE ON AN APPLICATION FORM o o o o o o o Writing up a project or dissertation Writing for the student newspaper Writing a report for a course placement Essays, dissertations, project reports Secretary of student society Publicity materials for a charity Letter to raise sponsorship for an event The strongest evidence will be the quality of the spelling and grammar on your application form, covering letter and CV. If these are full of spelling mistakes, sloppy grammar and poor presentation you are likely to be judged as having poor writing skills, whereas if your English is lucid, concise and to the point it will make a strongly positive impression. Your English GCSE grade may also be taken into account here and larger organisations may give you a VERBAL REASONING TEST See our competencies page for more about how to answer questions about
  8. 8. your skills. Structuring your answers, and choosing your words, carefully will help you to answer these questions effectively. Where you have a very tight word limit, it is essential to be very concise in your answers and to avoid any non-relevant information. Where you have a lot of space to fill, avoid the temptation to go into a lot of unnecessary detail simply in order to fill the page! Select what you are going to say, break down your answer into shorter paragraphs to make it easier for the recruiter to read and structure it into a coherent narrative. There is further information about tackling application-form questions at www.kent.ac.uk/careers/applic.htm Where written communication is the most important part of the job, for example in journalism, public relations or technical writing, you may also be asked to submit a piece of written work along with your application. Always send something that is relevant in style and content to the employer – academic essays and dissertations are unlikely to be the best example of your writing style in this situation! At the interview or assessment centre stage There may be further tests of your written communication skills such as: In-tray/In-box exercises. These are a form of role play in which you will be given a selection of letters, emails and reports which somebody doing the job might find in their in-tray or e-mail inbox first thing in the morning. Items may need a response such as drafting a reply to a customer complaint, writing a report, delegating tasks to colleagues or recommending action to superiors. For advice on handling these exercises, see www.kent.ac.uk/careers/interviews/intray.htm Case studies “We like to include a written test as it gives candidates an opportunity to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of the work by giving them a case study and then asking them to pull out the main issues, such as risk, analysis and planning ideas, legislative framework etc. You should never be tested on anything that is not included in the person specification for the job”. (Social work recruiter) “You will be presented with a file of papers which provide information from different sources on three fictitious projects, each of which is being considered by the government as a solution to a specific problem. Your task is to analyse the papers and prepare a note which builds a
  9. 9. balanced and convincing case for one of the three projects. To do this you will need to compare and contrast the options, using the stated criteria, and explain convincingly the reasons for your recommendation”. (Civil Service Fast Stream) “I was given 15 minutes to read through what the employer described as “the world’s worstwritten press release” (a fictitious example!), mark it up and note the mistakes.” (Marketing candidate) “You will have 30 minutes to read the exercise briefing materials and prepare a written report on the given subject. This exercise is designed to assess your ability to produce written reports to an appropriate standard. Your report will be assessed on the basis of your application of structure; use of clear, concise language; and logical and coherent presentation”. (PricewaterhouseCoopers) See www.kent.ac.uk/careers/interviews/Marstairs.htm for more about case studies as part of assessment centres. The connection between health, personality and writing In his book "The Secret Life of Pronouns" (Bloomsbury Press) Professor James W. Pennebaker describes how the more people changed from using first-person singular pronouns (I, me, my) to using other pronouns (we, you, he, they) in their writing, the better their health became. Their use of words reflected their psychological state. He also found that people who had a traumatic experience and kept the experience a secret had more health problems than people who talked openly. It was found that people who were asked to write about their secrets had improved health. Also, using words associated with positive emotions is also beneficial to health. Function words such as pronouns and articles require social skills to use properly and this is backed up by brain research. Men were found to typically use articles ("a" and "the") more than women. Ignoring gender, people who use "a" and "the" a lot tend to be more organised, emotionally stable, conscientious, politically conservative and older. Pennebaker found there were three main types of writing which related to personality: Formal writing can be stiff, humourless, and sometimes with a little arrogance. It contains lots of articles and prepositions but few I-words, and adverbs. Those who score highest in formal thinking tend to be concerned with status and power and to be less self-reflective. They drink and smoke less, tend to are more mentally healthy, but also less honest. Older people tend to have more formal writing. Analytical writing is about making distinctions. Analytical writers tend to do well academically, be more honest, and open to new experiences. They read more and tend to be more introspective.
  10. 10. Narrative writers are storytellers. Narrative writing uses lots of function words involving people, the past-tense and inclusive words such as "with" and "together". These writers tend to have good social skills, more friends and are more outgoing. Business communication (or simply "communications", in a business context) encompasses such topics as marketing, brand management, customer relations, consumer behaviour, advertising, public relations, corporate communication, community engagement, reputation management, interpersonal communication, employee engagement, and event management. It is closely related to the fields of professional communication and technical communication. Media channels for business communication include the Internet, print media, radio, television, ambient media, and word of mouth. Business communication can also refer to internal communication. A communications director will typically manage internal communication and craft messages sent to employees. It is vital that internal communications are managed properly because a poorly crafted or managed message could foster distrust or hostility from employees.[1] Business communication is a common topic included in the curricula of Masters of Business Administration (MBA) programs of many universities. AS well, many community colleges and universities offer degrees in Communications. There are several methods of business communication, including: Web-based communication - for better and improved communication, anytime anywhere ... video conferencing which allow people in different locations to hold interactive meetings; e-mails, which provide an instantaneous medium of written communication worldwide; Reports - important in documenting the activities of any department; Presentations - very popular method of communication in all types of organizations, usually involving audiovisual material, like copies of reports, or material prepared in Microsoft PowerPoint or Adobe Flash; telephoned meetings, which allow for long distance speech; forum boards, which allow people to instantly post information at a centralized location; and face-to-face meetings, which are personal and should be succeeded by a written followup. Business communication is somewhat different and unique from other types of communication since the purpose of business is to make money. Thus, to develop profitability, the communicator should develop good communication skills. Knowing the importance of communication, many organisations train their employees in communication techniques.
  11. 11. Types of business communication Verbal communication: Verbal communication is a type of communication that involves use of words for communicating. Non-verbal communication: [Non-verbal communication] is a mode of communication which only majorly uses body language and various other physical gestures as a means for communicating. Written communication: Written communication is a type that only includes written forms for communicating. Employment communication: Employment communication is a mode of communication that is particularly used for accepting the applicants for a job. Electronic communication: Electronic communication is the modern way of communication that includes electronics and latest technology for communicating such as teleconferencing e-mail, etc. Team B Communication: Team B Communication is a form of communication that exists in the cyber classroom where solid teamwork and collaboration results in excellent grades in academia. Top 6 Reasons for Business Communication Barrier 1.Complex Messages: The use of complex technical terms can result in a lack of communication. The remedy is to stick to the point, use clear and concise messages that are easy to understand. 2. Withholding Information: In an organization, much of the information is kept confidential due to company policies. Make sure the information that is needed is readily available and easily accessible. 3. Different Status: Management must keep employees well informed and encourage feedback.
  12. 12. 4. Ineffective Communication Processes: The maintenance of the hierarchy in the organization is essential, but its very presence can reduce the flow of the communication. It is therefore essential to reduce hierarchical levels and increase departmental interaction and communication. 5. Lack of Trust: The most important factor behind a lack of communication in an organization is competition, which leads to a lack of trust among the various employees. Share information, communicate openly and honestly, involve others in decisions. 6. Language barrier Language barrier is another important factor in business communication, if communication happens without a common language, it is not worthwhile. A business letter is an official form of correspondence. A person writes a business letter to an organization, or letters are sent from one organization to another organization. There are many reasons for writing business letters. You may write a letter to apply for a job, to request information, in appreciation of your job or to acknowledge a person's work. Acknowledgment Letter An acknowledgment letter acknowledges an action taken, a fact or a situation. An acknowledgment letter says thank you to an individual who has supported or helped you. This type of letter should be direct in acknowledging actions and deeds. This kind of business letter helps you to build a bond or strengthen a relationship with the person to whom you are writing. This kind of letter also serves as a confirmation that you have received a report or letter and that you are working on the project. Convey a positive tone throughout the letter. If there have been conflicts in the past, do not mention them in the letter. Business acknowledgment letters should consist of the following parts: heading, inside address, greeting, body, complimentary close and signature line. .

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