Better Business Writing


  • What makes for good business writing?
  • Can you think of the top ten criteria?
  • What should effective business writing not be?
  • How does this compare with typical business writing in your own country?
  • How does your business writing stack up?

Think of these questions as you engage in and seek to improve your own business writing.

First,  what types of business writing do you do?    What kind of feedback have you gotten about it?

You may not be able to fix everything about your business writing,  but you can make a start by focusing on a few significant trouble spots.      What are three specific things you can improve about your business writing?

A recent Forbes article noted 8 keys to better business writing.    While clearly important for business contexts, they are applicable to all writing.

  1. Know your purpose.
  2. Know and understand your reader.   (What do they need and want?  What do they like?)
  3. Write a quick first draft.  (Don’t over-think things.)
  4. Revise and edit.  (Always be sure to check  before clicking the ‘send’ button.)
  5. Be extremely clear and direct.
  6. Avoid redundancy (of words and ideas).
  7. Avoid jargon.
  8. Use the appropriate tone. (This point is related to point 2;  be neither overly formal, no excessively informal).
To these,  I would add:
9.   Use non-discriminatory language (this link explains it well — scroll down)

Here is a  wonderful example of how writing can be improved.

Remember,   your writing is an immediate and enduring reflection of who you are.

Useful websites:

Good Business Writing Style

8 Keys to Better Business Writing

Business Writing

10 Business Writing Tips Direct from the Experts

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