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CHAPTER 5: WRITING BUSINESS MESSAGES 1) OUTLINE Adapting to Your Audience Being Sensitive to Your Audience’s Needs Using the “You” Attitude Maintaining Standards of Etiquette Emphasizing the Positive Using Bias-Free Language Building Strong Relationships with Your Audience Establishing Your Credibility Projecting the Company’s Image Controlling Your Style and Tone Creating a Conversational Tone Using Plain English Selecting Active or Passive Voice Composing Your Message Choosing Strong Words Balancing Abstract and Concrete Words Finding Words that Communicate Well Creating Effective Sentences Choosing from the Four Types of Sentences Using Sentence Style to Emphasize Key Thoughts Crafting Coherent Paragraphs Understanding the Elements of a Paragraph Topic Sentence Support Sentences Transitions Developing Paragraphs Using Technology to Compose and Shape Your Messages 2) RÉSUMÉ Adapting to Your Audience In any communication situation, audiences are more likely to notice, pay attention to, and respond to messages that promise to address their concerns. To demonstrate true audience sensitivity, adopt the “you” attitude, maintain good standards of etiquette, emphasize the positive, and use bias-free language. Effective communicators adopt the “you” attitude—speaking and writing in terms of your audience’s wishes, interests, hopes and preferences. One way to use the “you” attitude is to replace words such as I, me, mine, we, us, and ours with words such as you and yours . Avoid overdoing the “you” attitude, otherwise, you run the risk of creating awkward sentences and sounding overly enthusiastic and artificial. The “you” attitude is not meant to be manipulative or insincere.
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In some situations, especially when trying to avoid sounding overly authoritative or accusing, it is best to avoid using you .
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