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ESSENTIALS OF BUSINESS COMMUNICATION

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8th Canadian Edition

Mary Ellen Guffey/Dana Loewy/

Richard Almonte

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Chapter 1

Career Success Begins with Communication Skills

Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

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Learning Objectives
1. Understand the importance of becoming an effective business communicator in today’s changing workplace.
2. Identify ways in which technology helps improve business writing.
3. Discuss how to become an effective listener.
4. Analyze nonverbal communication and explain techniques
for improving nonverbal communication skills.
5. Explain professionalism in the workplace.
6. Explain how culture affects communication and describe methods for improving cross-cultural communication.
7. Identify specific techniques that improve effective communication among diverse workplace audiences.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

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Succeeding in the Changing World of Work
Why is it important to develop communication skills?
Innovative communication technologies (we communicate rapidly)
Flattened management hierarchy (more employees making decisions)
More participatory management
Increase emphasis on self-directed work and project teams
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Ask students to offer examples of different occupations they have had, have now, or may have in the future. Discuss the extent to which written or verbal communication was/is required and how the jobs they will obtain after graduation will place more emphasis on their communication skills.
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Succeeding in the Changing World of Work
Heightened global competition (interaction with other cultures)
New work environments (telecommuting)
The move to a knowledge economy (growth of business)
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

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How Technology Improves Business Writing
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Designing and producing professional-looking documents, presentations and Web pages
Using templates and collecting information electronically
Adding graphics for emphasis
Improving correctness and precision
Using software for team writing

Examining the Communication Process
Transmission of information between sender and receiver
Purpose of communicating is to deliver meaning (though there are several factors that can interfere)
Five essential steps in all forms of communication
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Communication Process
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

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Examining the Communication Process
Sender forms idea influenced by a number of factors
Sender encodes idea in a message by using words or gestures
Message travels over a channel, which could include e-mail, letter, smartphone, etc.
Receiver decodes message and understands the meaning
Feedback travels to sender through a nod or responding message
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Communication is successful only when the reader understands the message as the receiver intended it. Feedback is central to the communication process.
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Developing Better Listening Skills
Barriers to Effective Listening
Physical Barriers
You are sick or uncomfortable.
You cannot hear the speaker.
Personal Barriers
Your values conflict with those of the speaker.
Language Problems
You cannot understand the speaker.

Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Ask the students: Which barrier to effective listening do you struggle with the most?
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Developing Better Listening Skills
Barriers to Effective Listening
Thought Speed
You start thinking about other things.
Faking Attention
You find it difficult to concentrate.
Grandstanding
You would rather speak than listen.
You become impatient.
Technological Barriers
You are distracted by your laptop or cell phone.

Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Ask the students: Which barrier to effective listening do you struggle with the most?
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Tips for Becoming an Active Listener
Stop talking.
Control your surroundings.
Establish a receptive mindset, and keep an open mind.
Listen for main points.
Capitalize on lag time.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Becoming an active listener is an active process. It requires effort.
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Tips for Becoming an Active Listener
Listen between the lines.
Judge ideas, not appearances.
Be patient.
Take selective notes (only important points).
Provide feedback (ask questions, give opinions).
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Improving Your Nonverbal Communication Skills
How the Eyes, Face, and Body Send Silent Messages
Messages are delivered beyond words.
Nonverbal cues are as, if not more, important than words.
Examples:
Eye contact
Facial expression
Posture and gestures
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Successful communicators attend to nonverbal cues.
Ask your students: What are some examples of positive or negative nonverbal cues?
Ask students: What attitudes do the following body positions and movements suggest to you? Do they always mean the same thing? What part does context play in your interpretations?
a. Whistling, wringing hands
b. Bowed posture, twiddling thumbs
c. Steepled hands, sitting in sprawled position
d. Rubbing hand through hair
e. Pacing back and forth, tugging ears
f. Twisting fingers through hair
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Improving Your Nonverbal Communication Skills
How Time, Space, and Territory Send Silent Messages:
Time
We allocate more time to respected clients.
Space
Formal decor indicates formal communication.
Territory
We maintain zones of privacy to feel comfortable.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Meaning is also conveyed through external elements like time, space, and distance.
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Four Space Zones for Social Interaction
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
for Social Interaction]]

Culture influences the way we look at space.
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Improving Your Nonverbal Communication Skills
How Appearance Sends Silent Messages
Business Documents
Organized, readable, and correct
People
Professional, presentable, and polite
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Appearance sends a powerful nonverbal message.
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Improving Your Nonverbal Communication Skills
Tips for Improving Your Nonverbal Skills
Establish and maintain eye contact.
Use posture to show interest (look alert).
Improve your decoding skills.
Probe for more information.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

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Improving Your Nonverbal Communication Skills
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Tips for Improving Your Nonverbal Skills
Avoid assigning nonverbal meanings out of context.
Associate with people from diverse cultures (learn their customs).
Appreciate the power of appearance (maintain professionalism).
Observe yourself.
Enlist friends and family.

What Employers Want: Professionalism
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Technical Knowledge
Soft Skills (employability skills; key competencies)
Able to communicate
Work with others
Solve problems
Make ethical decisions
Appreciate diversity

Soft skills are also known as employability skills and key competencies.
Ask the students to offer examples of professionalism in the workplace. Write on board. Discuss meaning behind answers.
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Projecting Professionalism When You Communicate
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Check your conduct to ensure professionalism.
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Understanding How Culture Affects Communication
Be sensitive to other cultures.
Learn customs and traditions of other cultures when doing business with them.
Canadians value collective decision making and tolerance of others.
Americans value individualism (common among most Western cultures).
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Have students read the article “Doing business abroad? Simple faux pas can sink you” by Gary Stoller in USA TODAY at www.usatoday.com/money/industries/travel/2007-08-23-faux-pas_N.htm.
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Understanding How Culture Affects Communication
Comparing Key Cultural Values: Five Key Dimensions
Low vs. high context (depend little on context of situation to convey meaning)
Individualism vs. collectivism (more collectivist than the United States)
Formality (less emphasis on tradition)
Communication style (straightforward, polite)
Time orientation (formal and task oriented)
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Ask the students: Can you think of evidence to support the argument that Canadians are more collectivist than Americans?
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Context Continuum
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Learning Intercultural Workplace Skills
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Learn to understand and accept people from other cultures.
Control ethnocentrism and stereotyping.
Develop tolerance (practise empathy and patience).

Control ethnocentrism and stereotyping (judging others based on own values; oversimplifying behaviour and applying it to all members of a group of people)
Develop tolerance (practise empathy and patience)

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Tips for Minimizing Oral Miscommunication Among Cross-Cultural Audiences
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Use simple English.
Speak slowly and enunciate clearly.
Encourage accurate feedback.
Check frequently for comprehension.
Observe eye messages.

Tips for Minimizing Oral Miscommunication Among Cross-Cultural Audiences
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Accept blame.
Listen without interrupting.
Remember to smile.
Follow up in writing.

Tips for Minimizing Written Miscommunication Among Cross-Cultural Audiences
Adopt local styles.
Consider hiring a translator.
Use short sentences and short paragraphs.
Avoid ambiguous writing (idioms, acronyms, etc.).
Cite numbers carefully (especially with dates).
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Ask students to explain in simple English what the following idiomatic expressions mean. Have them assume that they are explaining them to people for whom English is a second language.
a. let the cat out of the bag
b. take the bull by the horns
c. he is a tightwad
d. putting the cart before the horse
e. to be on the road
f. lend someone a hand
g. with flying colours
h. turn over a new leaf
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Tips for Effective Communication with Diverse Workplace Audiences
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Understand the value of differences.
Don’t expect conformity.
Create zero tolerance for bias and stereotypes.
Practise focused, thoughtful, and open-minded listening.

Tips for Effective Communication with Diverse Workplace Audiences
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Invite, use, and give feedback.
Make fewer assumptions.
Learn about your cultural self.
Seek common ground.

Summary
Senders must successfully deliver messages to receivers (through verbal and nonverbal communication).
Listening is an important part of the communication process.
Understanding cultural values plays an important role in effective communication.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

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Essentials of business communication

8th Canadian Edition

Mary Ellen Guffey/Dana Loewy/

Richard Almonte

Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Chapter 2

Before You Write

Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

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Learning Objectives
1. Understand that business writing should be audience oriented, purposeful, and economical.
2. Identify and implement the three phases of the writing process.
3. Appreciate the importance of analyzing the task and profiling the audience for business messages.
4. Create messages that spotlight audience benefits and cultivate a “you” view.
5. Develop a conversational tone and use positive and courteous language.
6. Explain the need for inclusive language, plain expression, and familiar words.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

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Basics of Business Writing
Your writing must be:
Audience oriented
Purposeful
Professional
Economical (clear and concise)
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Think about your audience: how will the reader react to your message?
It’s not just what you want to say that’s important; it’s also how your audience will react upon seeing/reading/hearing your communication. In other words, all workplace communicators need to think about their audience.

Break the process of business writing into three phases: prewriting, writing, and revising.

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Writing Processes for Business Messages and Oral Presentations
Prewriting
Analyze your purpose.
Analyze your audience.
Adapt message to your audience.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Ask the students which types of audiences/companies/customers might require special consideration before you begin writing. For example, you must be apologetic to a customer who is upset because a product she ordered from your company is defective.
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Writing Processes for Business Messages and Oral Presentations
Writing
Research.
Organize information.
Compose the message.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Direct the students to your school’s library database to practise finding scholarly material or introduce “Google Scholar” Web site.
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Writing Processes for Business Messages and Oral Presentations
Revising
Revise.
Proofread.
Evaluate the entire message to ensure it meets requirements.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Have students create a revision checklist they must follow when writing in-class assignments.
The Writing process shows the three phases equally; however, the amount of time you devote to each varies depending on the task itself, your purpose, your audience, and your schedule.
Use the following as a guide when scheduling a writing project:
Prewriting—25 percent
Writing—25 percent
Revising—50 percent
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Analyzing the Purpose for Writing
Identifying Your Purpose
Ask yourself
Why am I sending this message?
What do I hope to achieve?
Select the best channel
E-mail
Report
Letter
Etc.
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Analyzing the Purpose for Writing
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Selecting the Best Channel
E-Mail
You need feedback but not immediately
Lack of security
Letter
Written record/formality is required (customers, the government, suppliers, etc.)

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Analyzing the Purpose for Writing
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Selecting the Best Channel
Memo
Written record to clearly explain policies, discuss procedures, or collect information within an organization
Report
You are delivering considerable data internally or externally

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Analyzing the Purpose for Writing
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Switching to Faster Channels
Communicators are switching to ever-faster means of exchanging information.
Technology has increased the need for good writing skills.

Texting, e-mailing, and instant messaging can deliver the same information much faster than traditional channels of communication.
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Anticipating the Audience
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Profiling the audience (by visualizing your audience before you write, you can identify the appropriate tone, language, and channel).
Responding to the profile (after profiling your decide whether your audience you can decide whether the receiver will be neutral, positive, or hostile toward your message).

Anticipating the Audience
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Adapting to the Task and Audience
Audience Benefits
Adapt your message to receiver’s needs.
Positive messages use you often.
You may begin your vacation May 1.
Your well-being is the most important consideration.
Negative messages avoid you.
Customers may return merchandise with written approval.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Ask students how they might put themselves in someone else’s shoes (empathy).
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Adapting to the Task and Audience
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Sender Focus:
To enable us to update our shareholder records, we ask that the enclosed card be returned.
Audience Focus:
So that you may promptly receive dividend cheques and information related to your shares, please return the enclosed card.

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Adapting to the Task and Audience
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Sender Focus:
Our warranty becomes effective only when we receive an owner’s registration.
Audience Focus:
Your warranty begins working for you as soon as you return your owner’s registration.

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Adapting to the Task and Audience
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Polite “You” View
When delivering a positive message, use you and your whenever possible.
Used to inform, persuade, or promote goodwill.
“I/We” View:
I have scheduled your vacation to begin May 1.
“You” View:
You may begin your vacation May 1.

Emphasize you but do not eliminate I and we.
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Adapting to the Task and Audience
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Conversational but Professional
Use conversational tone to be effective.
Avoid sounding too casual.
Avoid slang and texting/messaging abbreviations.

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Adapting to the Task and Audience
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Conversational but Professional
Unprofessional:
If we just hang in there, we can grab the contract.
Conversational:
If we don’t get discouraged, we can win the contract.
Formal:
If the principals persevere, they can acquire the contract.

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Adapting to the Task and Audience
Positive Language
Say what is and can be done, not what isn’t or cannot be done.
Avoid:
Never
Cannot
Fail/reject/deny
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

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Adapting to the Task and Audience
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Positive Language
Negative:
We are unable to send your shipment until we receive proof of your payment.
Positive:
We look forward to sending your shipment as soon as we receive your payment.
Negative:
You will never regret opening an account with us.
Positive:
Your new account enables you to purchase high-quality clothing at reasonable prices.

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Adapting to the Task and Audience
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Courteous Language
Less courteous:
You must complete the report before Friday.
More courteous and helpful:
Will you please complete the report before Friday.

Adapting to the Task and Audience
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Bias-Free Language
The words we use can stereotype people.
Be cautious about expressions that might be biased in terms of gender, race, ethnicity, age, and disability.

Adapting to the Task and Audience
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Bias-Free Language
Avoid gender-based language.
Alternative: leave out the words man or woman
Alternative: pluralize nouns and pronouns
Alternative: use gender-free words (person or representative)
Example:
Gender-biased: mankind, man-hour, man-made
Bias-free: humanity, working hours, artificial

Adapting to the Task and Audience
Plain Language and Familiar Words
Avoid pretentious and pompous language.
Use “obvious” words to convey meaning.
For example:
use begin instead of commence or initiate
use pay instead of compensate
use end instead of terminate
use return instead of reciprocate

Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Shorter, simpler words deliver a clearer message.
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Adapting to the Task and Audience
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Plain Language and Familiar Words
Be selective in your use of jargon.
Use specialized words only when the audience will understand it
Use precise vigorous words (strong verbs and concrete nouns).
Use a 25 percent hike in profits, or a 10 percent plunge in profits instead of a change in profits.

Technical or specialized terms within a field.
These terms enable insiders to communicate complex ideas briefly, but to outsiders they mean nothing. Human resources professionals, for example, know precisely what’s meant by cafeteria plan (a benefits option program), but most of us would be thinking about lunch. Geologists refer to plate tectonics, and physicians discuss metastatic carcinomas.
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Improving the Tone in an E-Mail
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Summary
Follow writing process (prewriting, writing, revising).
Emphasize audience benefits.
Use inclusive language.
Use plain and familiar language.
Use precise expressions.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

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Essentials of business communication

8th Canadian Edition

Mary Ellen Guffey/Dana Loewy/

Richard Almonte

Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Chapter 3

Writing and Revising

Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

2

Learning Objectives
1. Contrast different methods of researching data and generating ideas for messages.
2. Explain how to organize information into outlines.
3. Compare direct and indirect patterns for organizing messages.
4. Identify components of effective sentences.
5. Revise messages to achieve conciseness, clarity, and impact.
6. Revise messages to achieve visual persuasiveness.
7. Describe effective techniques for proofreading documents.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

3

The Writing Process
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

[[Catch—Figure 3.1 from p.57 of 8ce, The Writing Process]]

4

Writing: Researching
Ask yourself the following questions:
What does the receiver need to know about this topic?
What is the receiver to do?
How is the receiver to do it?
When must the receiver do it?
What will happen if the receiver doesn’t do it?
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Collect the needed information before writing to a customer, client, or manager.
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Writing: Researching
Research Methods
Search secondary sources (books, dictionaries, company files, library databases).
Go directly to the source (interviews, surveys).
Conduct experiments.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Writing: Researching
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Informal Research and Idea Generation
Search your company (company files, consult colleagues).
Talk with your manager (get information from the person who gave you the assignment).
Interview the target audience (talk with individuals to whom the message is aimed).
Conduct an informal survey (questionnaires, telephone surveys).
Brainstorm for ideas (alone or with others).

Writing: Organizing Data
Outlining
Create outline.
Choosing a pattern
Direct pattern (you expect the reader to be pleased, mildly interested, or neutral; put your main point in the first or second sentence).
Indirect pattern (you expect the reader to be unwilling or displeased; put the main idea deeper in the message).

Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

8

Sample Outline
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

9

Writing: Organizing Data
Openings
Direct Opening
The Marketing Department at Bombardier suggests cutting costs for the annual awards ceremony by adjusting the way we order food and the way we handle rentals.
Indirect Opening
Bombardier is seeking to improve the process undertaken in producing its annual company awards ceremony. To this end, the Marketing Department, which is in charge of the event, has been refining last year’s plan, especially as regards the issue of rental costs and food and beverage costs.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Ask the students to think of two possible situations in which they would use the indirect opening and two possible situations in which they would use the direct opening.
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Writing: Organizing Data
Direct Pattern
Use if the audience is likely to be receptive or agreeable
Saves the reader time
Sets a proper frame of mind
Prevents frustration
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Writing: Organizing Data
Indirect Pattern
Use if audience is likely to be upset by bad news
Respects the feelings of the audience
Encourages a fair hearing
Minimizes a negative reaction
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Writing: Organizing Data
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Indirect Pattern
Works well with three kinds of messages:
1. Bad news
2. Ideas that require persuasion
3. Sensitive news

Constructing Effective Sentences
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Use a variety of sentence types:
A simple sentence (contains one complete thought)
A compound sentence (contains two complete but related thoughts)
A complex sentence (contains an independent clause and a dependent clause)
A compound-complex sentence (contains at least two independent clauses and one dependent clause)

To add variety to your writing, use four different sentence types.
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Constructing Effective Sentences
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Controlling Sentence Length
Limit your sentences to 20 or fewer words.
Reader comprehension drops off as sentences become longer (American Press Institute).

Controlling sentence length influences readability.
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Constructing Effective Sentences
Fragments
A sentence that is usually a broken-off part of a complex sentence
Often identified by the words that introduce the sentence (although, as, because, even, except, for example, if, instead of, since, such as, that, which, and when)
If the sentence starts with any of these words, make sure the clause is attached to an independent clause
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

One of the most serious offences a writer can make.
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Constructing Effective Sentences
Run-On (Fused) Sentences
Sentence that has two or more independent clauses
Clauses must be joined by
a coordinating conjunction (and, or, not, but)
a semicolon (;)

Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

17

Constructing Effective Sentences
Comma Splice Sentences
Sentence that has two independent clauses joined by a comma
Clauses should be joined with
a coordinating conjunction
a conjunctive adverb (however, consequently, therefore, etc.) and a semicolon
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

18

Writing: The First Draft
Prevent “writer’s block” by referring to your plan.
Write quickly (sprint writing) and don’t be afraid of errors—you can correct them later.
Read the message out loud to catch mistakes or an uneven flow.
Save your work!
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Revising: Understanding the Process of Revision
Revising means improving the content and sentence structure of the message.
You may add or delete material.
Try to make the message as concise as possible (less is more).
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Ask students for any suggestions for revising and proofreading that they may have used that are not mentioned in the chapter. Reinforce the advice given in Chapter 2 of the text: that 50 percent of the time spent completing a business message should be devoted to revising and proofreading.
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Revising: Understanding the Process of Revision
Concise Wording
Search for expressions that could be conveyed with one or two words.
Common examples:
at a later date = later
at this point in time = now
afford an opportunity = allow
are of the opinion that = believe, think that
in the event that = if
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Discuss with your students how the expression “Time is money” is relevant in this situation.
21

Revising: Understanding the Process of Revision
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Long Lead-Ins
Delete unnecessary introductory words or phrases.
Wordy:
I am sending you this announcement to let you all know that the office will be closed Monday.
Concise:
The office will be closed Monday.

Revising: Understanding the Process of Revision
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Outdated Expressions
Use modern, concise phrasing
as per your request = at your request
attached hereto = attached
thanking you in advance = thank you

Revising: Understanding the Process of Revision
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Needless Adverbs
Eliminating intensifying adverbs such as very, definitely, quite, completely, extremely, really, actually, somewhat, and rather streamlines your writing.
Omitting these intensifiers generally makes you sound more credible and businesslike.

Revising: Understanding the Process of Revision
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Fillers
Avoid crowding sentences with extra words.

Wordy Concise
There are three vice presidents who report directly to the president. Three vice presidents report directly to the president.
It is the client who should make application for licensing. The client should apply for licensing.

Revising: Understanding the Process of Revision
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Repetitious Words
Vary words to avoid unnecessary repetitions.
Employees will be able to elect an additional six employees to serve with the four previously elected employees who currently comprise the employees’ board of directors. To ensure representation, shift employees will be electing one shift employee as their sole representative.

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Revising: Understanding the Process of Revision
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Redundant Words
Words whose meanings are clearly implied by other words.
absolutely essential = essential
big in size = big
adequate enough = adequate
new beginning = beginning

Revising: Understanding the Process of Revision
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Parallelism
Use similar structures to express similar ideas.
Match nouns with nouns, verbs with verbs, and clauses with clauses.
Keep the wording balanced in expressing similar ideas.

Parallelism
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Lacks Parallelism Illustrates Parallelism
The policy affected all vendors, suppliers, and those involved with consulting. The policy affected all vendors, suppliers, and consultants. (Matches nouns)
Our primary goals are to increase productivity, reduce costs, and the improvement of product quality. Our primary goals are to increase productivity, reduce costs, and improve product quality. (Matches verbs)
We are scheduled to meet in Atlanta on January 5, we are meeting in Montreal on the 15th of March, and in Chicago on June 3. We are scheduled to meet in Atlanta on January 5, in Montreal on March 15, and in Chicago on June 3. (Matches phrases)

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Revising: Understanding the Process of Revision
Appropriate Wording
Avoid using jargon (technical terms) unless otherwise specified.
Avoid slang (even though it may be difficult).
Avoid clichés that could be misunderstood, for example:
hard facts
make a bundle
one in a million
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Revising: Understanding the Process of Revision
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Instant-Messaging and Texting Speak
As a rule, never use “instant-message speak” when your message is going to a customer, to another audience outside your company, to a manager, or fellow employee with whom you have never communicated before.

Revising: Understanding the Process of Revision
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Precise Verbs
Select verbs that will help the reader see precisely what is happening.
General:
Our salesperson will contact you next week.
Precise:
Our salesperson will (telephone, e-mail, visit) you next week.

Using Active and Passive Voice Effectively
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Revising: Understanding the Process of Revision
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Concrete Nouns
Help readers visualize the meanings of words
General:
a change in our budget
Concrete:
a 10 percent reduction in our budget

Revising: Understanding the Process of Revision
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Vivid Adjectives
General:
Clayton needs a better truck.
Vivid:
Clayton needs a rugged, four-wheel-drive, Dodge truck.

Revising: Understanding the Process of Revision
Designing Documents for Readability
Employ white space (use headings, margins, and small paragraphs).
Use lists for quick comprehension:
Numbered lists show a sequence.
Bulleted lists show items in no particular order.
Points must be parallel and capitalized.
Add end punctuation only if listed items are a complete sentence.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

36

Using Document Design to Improve Readability
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Revising: The Proofreading Process
Proofreading improves:
spelling (affect or effect? desert or dessert?)
grammar (do subjects agree with verbs?)
punctuation (commas, semicolons, and colons)
names and numbers
format (paragraphs)
consistency
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Have students complete the “Writing Improvement Exercises,” “Grammar/Mechanics Review,” and the “Grammar/Mechanics Challenge.” These can be done in or outside class and be evaluated formally or informally.
38

Summary
Researching: Ask yourself questions to prepare for writing.
Writing: Organize your data in an outline.
Writing: Write down whatever comes to mind.
Revising: Read over your work to improve wording and eliminate errors.
Proofreading: Look for irregularities in spelling, grammar, punctuation, names, and format; proofread from a printed copy.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

ESSENTIALS OF BUSINESS COMMUNICATION

8th Canadian Edition

Mary Ellen Guffey/Dana Loewy/

Richard Almonte

Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Chapter 4

E-Mails, Messages, Texts, Social Media, Letters, Memos, and Other Daily Writing

Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

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Learning Objectives
1. Understand the difference between electronic and traditional written workplace communication, and the ascendancy of electronic forms.
2. Explain the pros and cons of e-mail and how to use it professionally.
3. Explain the pros and cons of instant messaging and texting and how to use them professionally.
4. Explain the pros and cons of social media and how to use it professionally.
5. Explain the pros and cons of podcasts, wikis, and blogs and how to use them professionally.
6. Examine the traditional formats of memos and letters for business correspondence.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

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Written Communication in Business
Written information is exchanged electronically and on the go.
Netbooks, smartphones, tablets
Mobile and cloud computing are important electronic trends impacting business communication.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Written Communication in Business
Communicating With Electronic Messages
E-Mail
Short, routine messages
Instant Messaging
Conversation between two or more users
Texting
Short, person-to-person inquiries and responses
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Written Communication in Business
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Communicating With Electronic Messages
Social Media
One-to-many channel used mostly for marketing and promotion purposes
Podcasts/Blogs
Useful for improving customer relations, marketing, and training
Wikis
Enable multiple users to collaboratively create and edit pages

Ask students to name specific communication tasks for which each electronic message might be used.
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Written Communication in Business
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Communicating With Paper-Based Messages
Business Letters:
Permanent record, confidential, sensitive material, formality
Interoffice Memo:
Method of delivering confidential data
Useful for explaining company policies and procedures

Ask students to name specific purposes, situations, and audiences for which paper-based messages might be used.
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E-Mails and Their Proper Use
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Writing Plan for E-Mails
Subject line
Salutation
Opening
Body
Closing

E-Mails and Their Proper Use
Components of E-Mails
1. Subject Line
Summarize central idea.
Avoid meaningless words (a, the).
Avoid dangerous words (issue, problem).
2. Salutation
Hi, Rachna; Dear Rachna.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Refer students to Figure 4.1 on page 94 to see the “Before” (poorly written) and “After” (well-written) sample of an e-mail message.
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E-Mails and Their Proper Use
3. Opening
Reveal the main idea immediately.
4. Body
Provide details.
Ensure it is easy to comprehend (bulleted lists).
Limit to one topic.
5. Closing
Include action information, dates, or deadlines.
Summarize the message.
Close with a simple concluding thought.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

E-Mails and Their Proper Use
Formatting an E-Mail
Guide words (Date, To, From, Subject)
Salutation (Dear Leslie,)
Body (intro, body, and concluding paragraphs)
Single space; double-space between paragraphs
No indentation
Complimentary close (Sincerely,)
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Formatting an E-Mail
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Best Practices for Professional E-Mails
Getting Started
Compose your message offline.
Get the address right.
Avoid misleading subject lines.
Apply the top-of-the screen test.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Ask students what type of impression they give when they do not follow the advice given above.
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Best Practices for Professional E-Mails
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Content, Tone, and Correctness
Be concise.
Don’t send anything you wouldn’t want published.
Don’t use e-mail to avoid contact.
Care about correctness.
Care about tone.

Ask students what type of impression they give when they do not follow the advice given above.
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Best Practices for Professional E-Mails
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Netiquette
Consider the rules of polite online interaction.
Don’t copy everyone.
Don’t reply to an entire cc list.
Announce attachments.
Consider asking for permission before forwarding.

Ask students what type of impression they give when they do not follow the advice given above.
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Best Practices for Professional E-Mails
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Reading and Replying to E-Mail
Scan all messages in your inbox before replying to each individually.
Print only when necessary.
Acknowledge receipt.
Respond to messages quickly and efficiently.
Never respond to an e-mail when you are angry.

Best Practices for Professional E-Mails
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Other Smart E-Mail Practices
Design e-mails effectively.
Consider cultural differences.
Double-check before sending.

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Instant Messaging and Texting and Their Proper Use
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Best Practices for Instant Messaging and Texting
Learn about your employer’s instant messaging (IM) and texting policies.
Don’t text or IM while driving.
Go offline when you need to complete a project or meet a deadline.
Organize your contact lists.
Keep messages simple and to the point.

Instant Messaging and Texting and Their Proper Use
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Best Practices for Instant Messaging and Texting
Don’t use IM or texts to send confidential or sensitive information.
Be aware that IM and texts are retrievable.
Keep personal messaging to a minimum.
Show patience when responses are not immediate.
Keep your presence status current.

Social Media as a Business Writing Channel
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Tips for Using Social Networking Sites and Keeping Your Job
Exercise caution.
Establish boundaries.
Think twice before posting online.
Do not block users for no apparent reason.

Social networking sites allow businesses to connect with customers and employees, sell products and services, share company news,
and exchange ideas.
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Social Media as a Business Writing Channel
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
RSS Feeds and Social Bookmarking
Really simple syndication (RRS) is a fast and easy way to search and manage many news sources at once.
Social bookmarking helps users search, organize, manage, and store bookmarks on the Web.

Social bookmarking is a way for users to link to sites and share with others online. Digg, delicious, reditt, StumbleUpon, and squidoo are a few of the social bookmarking (content collector Web sites).
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Podcasts, Blogs, and Wikis for Business Writing
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
User-centred Virtual Environments
Individuals have enormous power because they can potentially reach huge audiences.
Fact-checking often falls by the wayside.
In some cases, creating a buzz becomes more important than truth.

Use podcasts, blogs, and wikis prudently.
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Podcasts, Blogs, and Wikis for Business Writing
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Business Podcasts
Digital audio or video files that can be downloaded to a computer or watched on a smartphone
Creating a simple, professional podcast is easy as long as it is scripted and well rehearsed.

Podcasts, Blogs and Wikis for Business Writing
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Professional Blogs and Twitter
Businesses use blogs to keep customers and employees informed and to interact with them.
Twitter is often referred to as a microblogging service, but it also invites social networking.

Ask students to read the following article for discussion http://cyberbuzz.com/how-to-use-a-company-twitter-account/
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Podcasts, Blogs, and Wikis for Business Writing
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
How Companies Use Blogs
Public relations, customer relations, and crisis communication
Market research
Online communities
Internal communication and recruiting

Podcasts, Blogs, and Wikis for Business Writing
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Tips for Creating a Professional Blog
Identify your audience.
Find a home for your blog.
Craft your message.
Make “blogrolling” work for you.
Attract search engines by choosing the right keywords.

Podcasts, Blogs, and Wikis for Business Writing
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Tips for Creating a Professional Blog
Blog often.
Monitor the traffic to your site.
Seek permission.
Stay away from inappropriate topics.

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A Corporate Blog
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Podcasts, Blogs, and Wikis for Business Writing
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
How Businesses Use Wikis
The global wiki
The wiki knowledge base
Wikis for meetings
Project management with wikis
Documentation and wikis

A wiki is a Web site that employs easy-to-use collaborative software to allow users to create documents that can be edited by tapping into the same technology that runs the well-known online encyclopedia Wikipedia.
If you use a wiki, be an effective participant. Pay attention to correct grammar, spelling, and verify your facts.
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Writing Hard-Copy Memos
Memos are useful for important internal messages that require a permanent record or formality.
Check if your company has memo templates.
Include guide words (Date, To, From, Subject).
Handwrite initials after your typed name.
Omit closing.
Single-space body; double-space between paragraphs
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

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Typical Business Memo
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Writing Hard-Copy Memos
Writing plan for Memos:
Subject line
Opening
Body
Closing
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Writing Hard-Copy Letters
A business letter is a powerful and effective channel for businesspeople to get their point across.
They produce a permanent record.
They can be confidential.
They convey formality and sensitivity.
They deliver persuasive, well-considered messages.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Writing Hard-Copy Letters
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Writing Plan for Letters:
Letterhead
Date and address
Body
Closing salutation and signature

Typical Business Letter
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Summary
Messages are sent internally and externally using both electronic and paper-based messages.
Follow basic rules and send safe and effective messages.
Use hard-copy memos to send confidential or important company information.
Use letters when formality, confidentiality, a permanent record, or persuasiveness are required.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

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ESSENTIALS OF BUSINESS COMMUNICATION

8th Canadian Edition

Mary Ellen Guffey/Dana Loewy/

Richard Almonte

Chapter 5

Routine Writing Situations

Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

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Learning Objectives
1. Identify routine writing situations.
2. Explain the relationship between routine writing situations and the direct plan for business writing.
3. Write messages that share information.
4. Write messages that request information and/or action.
5. Write reply messages to clients, customers, or coworkers.
6. Write instruction messages.
7. Write claim/complaint and adjustment messages.
8. Write recommendation messages.
9. Write goodwill messages.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

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Routine Situation: Sharing Information
Writing Plan
Opening (say hello and set context for sharing)
Body (share your information)
Closing (sign off with your name and a closing salutation)
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Routine Situation: Requesting Information or Action
Writing Plan
Opening (ask the most important question first or express a polite command)
Body (explain the request logically and courteously; ask other questions if necessary)
Closing (request a specific action with an end date, if appropriate, and show appreciation)
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

E-Mail Requesting Information
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

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Routine Situation: Replying to Shared Information or Requests
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Writing Plan
Subject line (identify previous correspondence)
Opening (deliver the most important information first)
Body (arrange information logically, explain and clarify it, provide additional information if appropriate, and build goodwill)
Closing (end pleasantly)

Subject lines should carry the purpose of the message in a few words.
‹#›

E-Mail Response to Customer
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Routine Situation: Giving Instructions
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Writing Plan
Subject line (summarize the content of the message)
Opening (expand the subject line by stating the main idea)
Body (divide the instructions into steps; use bullets or numbers and action verbs using the imperative mood)
Closing (request a specific action, summarize message, or present a closing thought)

Create logical steps in the correct order.
Ask students to revise the wordy, dense statements on p. 148.
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Memo Delivering Instructions
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Routine Situation: Making a Complaint or Claim
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Claims are written when a customer wants to identify or correct a wrong in business.
Writing Plan:
Opening (clearly describe the desired action)
Body (explain the nature of the claim and how the claim is justified, and provide details regarding the action requested)
Closing (end pleasantly with a goodwill statement and include an end date if appropriate)

Claim Letter
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

When reviewing the “Before” and “After” claim letter samples, point out to students how damaging a negative tone can be. Tell them that when they are writing claim letters, they should place themselves in the position of the Customer Service Representative (the person most likely to respond to claims) who is receiving the letter. People are more likely to be generous and understanding if the writer approaches them in a forgiving way. When writing claims, facts are more important than expressing emotion, especially anger.
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Routine Situation: Replying to Complaints and Claims
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Writing Plan:
Subject line (optional; identify the previous correspondence)
Opening (grant request or announce the adjustment immediately; include resale or sales promotion if appropriate)
Body (provide details about how you are complying with the request; try to regain the customer’s confidence and include resale or sales promotion if appropriate)
Closing (end positively with a forward-looking thought; express confidence in future business relations; avoid referring to unpleasantness)

Reveal good news in the opening: Present the good news immediately.
Explain compliance in the body: Explain how you are complying with the claim.
Decide whether to apologize: Avoid meaningless apologies.
Show confidence in the closing: Express confidence that the problem has been solved.
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Adjustment Letter
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Routine Situation: Recommending Someone
Written to nominate people for awards or to evaluate former employees
Writing Plan:
Opening (identify the applicant, the position, and the reason for writing; establish your relationship with the applicant; describe the length of employment or relationship)
Body (describe job duties; provide specific examples of the applicant’s professional and personal skills and attributes; compare the applicant with others in his or her field)
Closing (summarize the significant attributes of the applicant; offer an overall rating; draw a conclusion regarding the recommendation)
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

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Routine Situation: Recommending Someone
Identifying the purpose in the opening
Example: I’m very pleased to nominate Robert Walsh for the Employee-of-the-Month award. For the past 16 months, Mr. Walsh served as staff accountant in my division. During that time he distinguished himself by …
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Routine Situation: Expressing Goodwill
Include thanks, recognition, and sympathy.
Messages should be:
Selfless (don’t talk about yourself)
Specific
Sincere
Spontaneous
Short
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

E-Mail Thank-You for a Favour
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Replies to Goodwill Messages
Take time to respond to any goodwill messages you receive; it is simply the right thing to do.
Answer a congratulatory note.
Respond to a pat on the back.

Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

To Express Condolences
Letters of Sympathy are written to offer condolences and can be difficult to write.
Refer to the death or misfortune sensitively.
In the case of a death, praise the deceased in a personal way.
Offer assistance without going into excessive detail.
End on a positive reassuring note.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Ask students what might be difficult about writing letters of sympathy. What types of words and expressions should they use and/or avoid?
Ask students if electronic channels are appropriate for goodwill messages.
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To Express Condolences
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
We are deeply saddened, Gayle, to learn of the death of your husband. Warren’s kind nature and friendly spirit endeared him to all who knew him. He will be missed. Although words seem empty in expressing our grief, we want you to know that if we can help you or lighten your load in any way, you just have to let us know.

Summary
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Routine situations in the office require a written message.
Respond positively to information requests and customer complaints and claims.
Take time to write and respond to goodwill messages.
Use the direct strategy for these routine messages.

Essentials of business communication

8th Canadian Edition

Mary Ellen Guffey/Dana Loewy/

Richard Almonte

Chapter 6

Persuasive Writing Situations

Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

2

Learning Objectives
1. Understand why the indirect strategy is used to persuade and how the strategy works.
2. Request favours and other actions persuasively.
3. Write persuasive claim request messages.
4. Present persuasive new ideas within organizations.
5. Analyze techniques used in persuasive sales and promotional messages.
6. Compose various persuasive electronic sales and promotional messages.
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

3

Using the Indirect Writing Strategy in Persuasive Writing Situations
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Use the indirect strategy when you know you will encounter resistance.
It requires more practice and experience than the direct strategy.

Components of an Indirect Persuasive Request
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Writing Plan:
Gain attention in the opening.
Build interest in the body.
Reduce resistance in the body.
Motivate action in the closing.

Ask students why persuasion is such an important factor.
5

Persuasive Favour Request
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Discuss the differences in the “Before” and “After” documents.
6

Persuasive Situation: Making Complex Claims and Complaints
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Writing Plan:
Gain attention in the opening by paying the receiver a compliment.
Build interest in the body by explaining and justifying the complaint with convincing reasons and without anger.
Reduce resistance in the body by subtlety suggesting the responsibility of the receiver. Appeal to sense of fairness or desire for customer satisfaction.
Motivate action in the closing by explaining exactly what action you want taken and when.

7

Complex Indirect Claim
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Persuasive Situation: Sales and Promotional Messages
Writing Plan: AIDA
Opening (gain Attention. Offer something valuable; promise a benefit to the reader.)
Body (build Interest. Describe central selling points and make rational and emotional appeals; elicit Desire in the reader and reduce resistance.)
Closing (motivate Action. Offer a gift, promise an incentive, limit the offer, set a deadline, or guarantee satisfaction.)

Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

9

The AIDA Pattern
Attention
Opener should be short.
Begin with something to catch the reader’s attention:
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Offer Fact
Benefit Produce feature
Open-ended suggestive question Testimonial
Quotation Compliment Startling statement
Compliment Personalized action setting

10

The AIDA Pattern
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Interest
Describe product/service with appeals:

Rational Appeal Saving money or increasing efficiency

Emotional Appeal Status, ego, sensual feelings

Dual Appeal A combination of both rational and emotional appeal

The AIDA Pattern
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Desire
Elicit desire in the reader and overcome resistance.
Anticipate objections.
Focus on reader benefits:

Provide testimonials Offer free trial/sample

Use names of satisfied users (with permission) Mention performance tests, polls or awards

Offer a guarantee or warranty

The AIDA Pattern
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Action
Make it easy for the reader to respond.
Consider incentives to encourage action:

Offer a gift/incentive
Set a deadline/limit the offer
Guarantee satisfaction

The final paragraph of the sales letter carries the call to action.
13

Direct-Mail Sales Letter Using AIDA
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.

Ask students why it is important to understand the differences between direct and indirect sales messages.
14

Persuasive Situation: Online Sales and Promotional Messages
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Much like traditional direct mail, digital marketing can attract new customers, keep existing ones, encourage future sales, cross-sell, and cut costs.

15

Persuasive Situation: Online Sales and Promotional Messages
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Selling by e-mail:
Craft a catchy subject line.
Keep the main information “above the fold.”
Keep the message short, conversational, and focused.
Convey urgency.
Sprinkle testimonials throughout the copy.
Provide a means for opting out.

Using Other New Media to Connect With Customers
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
Facebook
Blogs
Wikis
RSS
Podcasting
Other social media (Twitter)

Ask students to give examples of when each of the other new media ideas would be appropriate for a company to use in the context of persuasive writing.
17

Summary
Copyright © 2016 by Nelson Education Ltd.
The ability to persuade is a powerful versatile communication tool.
Apply the indirect strategy when writing claim letters, favour requests, persuasive suggestions within organizations, and sales letters.

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