Business Writing Fundamentals
Illustration by Neil Webb

Business Writing Fundamentals

with Judy Steiner-Williams
image
lynda.com's PMI® Program
This course qualifies for 1.50 PDUs towards maintaining PMI® certification. Learn More

Video: Making your writing complete

- Complete. Self-explanatory, right? Understanding what it means is simple, but making certain that your communications are complete isn't as simplistic. Once I received a letter asking me to speak at a conference. It told me where the conference would be, how many attendees were expected, what my topic would be, what the room provided, what my stipend would be, and by when the committee needed my answer. Did you notice that the date of the conference was missing? That was a vital piece of information.

Start your free trial now, and begin learning software, business and creative skills—anytime, anywhere—with video instruction from recognized industry experts.

Start Your Free Trial Now
please wait ...
Watch the Online Video Course Business Writing Fundamentals
1h 32m Appropriate for all Feb 04, 2014

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

Discover the secrets to effective business writing and crafting messages that others want to read and act on. Judy Steiner-Williams, senior lecturer at Kelley School of Business, introduces you to the 10 Cs of strong business communication and provides you with before-and-after writing samples that give you the opportunity to apply each principle and sharpen your communication skills. Judy also points out common grammar and writing mistakes and shares special considerations for formats like emails and reports.

This course qualifies for 1.5 Category A professional development units (PDUs) through lynda.com, PMI Registered Education Provider #4101.


The PMI Registered Education Provider logo is a registered mark of the Project Management Institute, Inc.

Subject:
Business
Author:
Judy Steiner-Williams

Making your writing complete

- Complete. Self-explanatory, right? Understanding what it means is simple, but making certain that your communications are complete isn't as simplistic. Once I received a letter asking me to speak at a conference. It told me where the conference would be, how many attendees were expected, what my topic would be, what the room provided, what my stipend would be, and by when the committee needed my answer. Did you notice that the date of the conference was missing? That was a vital piece of information.

Why are messages sent with incomplete information? One reason is that we forget that the reader doesn't know all the information we do. You know what you know and may not consider that the reader doesn't necessarily know the same information. Think about this example. You send this e-mail to your fellow meeting attendees. "Just a reminder that our monthly meeting Friday "will begin promptly at ten. "Be sure to bring your latest sales figures "and come prepared to discuss the three products "for which I've attached updated changes.

"As always, bagels and coffee will be provided." At 10:15, Corey, last month's promising new hire arrives obviously stressed and out of breath. Your immediate thought is that being late to the first meeting is not a good way to begin. Corey quickly explains that he had spent the previous 20 minutes trying to locate the meeting room. What happened? You and all the other team members knew where the meeting would be held, where it had always been held, but Corey, having never attended one of these meetings, needed that crucial bit of information.

So the major cause of incomplete writing is assuming or forgetting to analyze what your reader does and doesn't know. What can be done to be certain your communication is complete? Try to think like your reader. Even though that can be difficult, the more you know and can learn about your reader the more you can try to think like that reader. Ask yourself these questions. What is the primary purpose of the message? The most important point I need my reader to remember? What information must the message include? For example, ask the questions who, what, when, where, why, and how.

What does the audience already know about this situation? Will my reader need some background information or has he been part of all previous discussions or negotiations? What does my reader want to know and/or need to know? How does the information impact the reader? What should the reader do with the information? Additionally, what actions do you want from the reader? Is a follow-up necessary or is the message just to provide information? If follow-up is necessary, how is it to be shared, call a meeting, send an e-mail, or write a report? Also ask if you've worked with this reader before.

Do we have a working relationship so I know how the reader will react to the message? Will the reader have a positive, neutral, or negative reaction? To help you analyze if your message is complete, you might have someone who is unfamiliar with the situation read your message to see if he or she has any questions about what you are saying. If possible, write your message and then put it aside for even 10 or 15 minutes and then re-read it to help you identify holes in the message.

Keep trying to see the message through your reader's eyes, and ask those all-important questions so that you can be certain the message is complete.

There are currently no FAQs about Business Writing Fundamentals.

 
Share a link to this course

What are exercise files?

Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course. Save time by downloading the author's files instead of setting up your own files, and learn by following along with the instructor.

Can I take this course without the exercise files?

Yes! If you decide you would like the exercise files later, you can upgrade to a premium account any time.

Become a member Download sample files See plans and pricing

Please wait... please wait ...
Upgrade to get access to exercise files.

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Learn by watching, listening, and doing, Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along Premium memberships include access to all exercise files in the library.


Exercise files

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

For additional information on downloading and using exercise files, watch our instructional video or read the instructions in the FAQ .

This course includes free exercise files, so you can practice while you watch the course. To access all the exercise files in our library, become a Premium Member.

* Estimated file size

Are you sure you want to mark all the videos in this course as unwatched?

This will not affect your course history, your reports, or your certificates of completion for this course.


Mark all as unwatched Cancel

Congratulations

You have completed Business Writing Fundamentals.

Return to your organization's learning portal to continue training, or close this page.


OK
Become a member to add this course to a playlist

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses—and create as many playlists as you like.

Get started

Already a member ?

Exercise files

Learn by watching, listening, and doing! Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along. Exercise files are available with all Premium memberships. Learn more

Get started

Already a Premium member?

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Ask a question

Thanks for contacting us.
You’ll hear from our Customer Service team within 24 hours.

Please enter the text shown below:

The classic layout automatically defaults to the latest Flash Player.

To choose a different player, hold the cursor over your name at the top right of any lynda.com page and choose Site preferences from the dropdown menu.

Continue to classic layout Stay on new layout
Exercise files

Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.

Mark videos as unwatched

Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.

Control your viewing experience

Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.

Interactive transcripts

Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.

Learn more, save more. Upgrade today!

Get our Annual Premium Membership at our best savings yet.

Upgrade to our Annual Premium Membership today and get even more value from your lynda.com subscription:

“In a way, I feel like you are rooting for me. Like you are really invested in my experience, and want me to get as much out of these courses as possible this is the best place to start on your journey to learning new material.”— Nadine H.

Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.


Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

Keep up with news, tips, and latest courses with emails from lynda.com.

Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

   
submit Lightbox submit clicked
Terms and conditions of use

We've updated our terms and conditions (now called terms of service).Go
Review and accept our updated terms of service.