WEEK 11_1 - WEEK 11: MEMOS AND INSTRUCTIONS This week, we...

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WEEK 11: MEMOS AND INSTRUCTIONS This week, we examine two topics – memos and instructions. Your assignment this week is to create a memo with instructions. With the advent of the internet, memos are becoming rarer. As we communicate via e-mail, the often formal characteristics are seen as un-necessary – but they still serve a purpose, and it’s important for you to understand how to create them. As for instructions – no matter how workplace technology changes, instructions always have been and always will be a prominent fixture at work. The way we give instructions may change, but the instructions themselves remain. So let’s get started. MEMOS: The term “memo” is a shortened version of memorandum. Originally, when someone said “memo,” they meant a brief note or communication. But over time, the word and its meaning shifted and now when we say “memo” we refer to a specific written format. A memo has identifying information at the top without a formal signature. The memo is less formal and contains fewer elements than a formal report, but it’s more formal than an e-mail. Now, I mentioned above that as e-mail becomes more common, the memo becomes less common. But there are times when you want a certain level of formality. Let’s say, for instance, that your company is instituting a new random drug testing policy. The bosses could send the information out via e-mail, but e-mail can be deleted or ignored. E-mail is common – remember at the beginning of the class when we talked about how we tend to ignore things we see over and over again? Well, because this new policy is deemed important, chances are good that your bosses will utilize a more formal memo format to deliver the information. That way, they are sure to get your attention. The bosses also want you to be aware of this new policy, so that when your time comes to be tested, you can’t say “Hmmmm. I never heard about this new policy.” Lawyers like memos – that way, should you ever take your company to court, the company lawyer can say “Mr. So and So was aware of the drug testing policy – the information about it was distributed to every employee via memo on such and such date.” So there are times that the formality of a memo is a good thing. Effective memos should have: Identifying information : Identifying information should have five elements: The company logo or letterhead The “to” line The “from” line The “subject” line The “date” line An optional “c” or “copies” line On second and subsequent pages, include recipient's name, page number and date in upper left corner A clearly stated purpose: Make sure you clearly state your purpose. Your purpose can be stated in a separate purpose statement or in the first line of the first paragraph. While some writers would like to present information before stating the purpose most
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This note was uploaded on 03/23/2012 for the course ITEC 3290 taught by Professor Dunn during the Spring '12 term at East Carolina University .

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WEEK 11_1 - WEEK 11: MEMOS AND INSTRUCTIONS This week, we...

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