Basics of Business Writing

Basics of Business Writing - Lesson 1: Basics of Business...

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Lesson 1: Basics of Business Writing / Style Effective business communication practices have been clearly mapped for many years now. Many academic departments at universities have acknowledged the importance of business communication through offering courses in business writing. The principles established in these classes are based on research involving actual practice in the business world. You will proceed step by step in this lesson as you develop your style as a professional business communicator. Style is made up of a number of elements. The basic building blocks are words, sentences, and paragraphs. In addition, there are features of style that go beyond the building blocks— tone, audience orientation, courtesy, and goodwill. All of these features help you with the most basic purpose of business communication—to persuade your audience to take the action you are requesting. You develop a “voice” as you learn this style. Style – The way in which a writer communicates; the personality that comes through in writing. Diction—Word Choice In developing a business writing style, you need to remember this acronym, KISS. (No, you’re not asking for a kiss!) It stands for “Keep it simple, stupid!” Though it is more frequently used with business writing’s cousin, technical writing, the KISS principle (basic style of writing) applies equally well to business writing. The KISS principle applies to the writing concept of diction or, more simply, word choice. The English language evolved from a Germanic base and was heavily influenced by French. As it continued to evolve, it borrowed from many other languages. For your purposes in business communication, you will prefer the simpler, shorter Anglo- Saxon (Germanic) words to the multi-syllabic, Latinate (French) words.
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Of course, you occasionally need to use longer words. You should not assume, as some beginning writers, that you are being asked to write a kindergarten, “See Spot run,” style of writing. Connotation Versus Denotation A dictionary is always a valuable resource for a writer. An entry in a dictionary gives valuable advice about the word, such as its meaning, origin, and pronunciation. Actually, there are two types of meanings for words— denotation and connotation . For example, with denotation a chair is a chair, and with connotation a snake is a dishonest person. In business writing, you want to stay as close as possible to an exact, literal meaning. You want to use a word's denotation. Denotation – literal; dictionary meaning
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This note was uploaded on 08/26/2011 for the course COM 3100 taught by Professor Steinfatt during the Spring '11 term at FIU.

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Basics of Business Writing - Lesson 1: Basics of Business...

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