Business Writing

Talk, tips, and best picks for writers on the job.

Syntax Training | Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

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September 12, 2017

Comments

Venessa

Hello Lynn,
You are consistent in providing great writing tips and at the same time creating awareness. Sometimes it is something small that inadvertently equates to something so obviously awry. I am a more conscientious writer thanks to your sharing and great writing tips!
Thank you!

JC

I completely agree with you. I am a writer for a nonprofit organization and I have always disliked that charitable organizations have often retained the business world's "Marketing Dept." titles. Makes me cringe. No one likes to be "marketed to." Especially for important causes - and sensitive, personal life decisions like your friends'.

I like your suggestions. I also thought of Prospective Residency as a department name.

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Venessa, thanks for your positive feedback! I'm very happy that this blog has helped you be a better writer.

Lynn

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi JC,

I'm glad you brought up the wider issue of nonprofits. I too have seen some overly corporate titles in community organizations.

"Prospective" is a good word in our new titles for the department.

Thanks for stopping by.

Lynn

Becky

My daughters and I recently stayed at a hotel that had this sign on the check-in desk - "We're sorry we do not allow pets". I thought it was oddly worded.

George Raymond

"Sales and Marketing" does have the benefit of warning you that you will be dealing with a business, not a charity.

Robbye

How about Resident Experience Director or the Office/Dept. of Resident Experience?

Bart Rosenberg

How about a short mission statement on the door? Nomenclature like "department of", "director of", "office of" are just titles for the egos of people.

Business terms that don't match the experience: whenever I've seen "Integrity" in the name, integrity seems to be lacking i.e. neglected promises, missed deadlines without notice or apology.

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi all,

Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

Becky, I'm not sure how I would word that message differently. Do you have ideas?

George, you're right. "Sales and Marketing" certainly communicates that message.

Robbye, I like Resident Experience. My guess is that an institution would not use it because the individual in that job would not want to focus on the ongoing experience, just on the initial one.

Bart, I like your ideas. Interesting observation about integrity. I'll be watching for that.

Lynn

Amy

For the "no pets" policy, how about: Sorry - only certified service animals allowed here.

Cathy Miller

Right or wrong, skilled nursing facilities have such a horrible reputation for high cost and often (unfortunately) poor care. So, you would think they would be a bit more sensitive in this area.

Why not something like Care Facility Advisor?

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Amy, I like your suggestion. Thanks!

Cathy, thanks for stopping by! I like "advisor" and "care" a lot. Somehow, though, I stumble over the full string, wondering whether "care" applies to the facility or the advisor. "Care Advisor" or "Resident Care Advisor" might be clearer to me.

Lynn

Cathy Miller

I thought of Care Advisor, but to me that sounds more like a caregiver than someone talking to you about what their facility has to offer. Just my 2 cents. ;-)

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Cathy, you're right. Thanks for your two cents!

Lynn

Pat Taylor

While using Google Search, l happened upon your blog! I applied for a mortgage modification from my Bank and much to my horror, received a second letter requesting more documentation. This letter contained 13 single spaced bullet points ( not numbered) as a list of items still needed to complete the modification packet! Wow! I replied by assigning a number and letter to each bullet question followed by a corresponding number and letter for each answer, with the reply. Then I got a third letter with 7 ( non numbered) bullet points asking for the same documents!! Wow! Confusing!

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Pat, what a terrible example. Thanks for sharing it. I'll try to use your story in a future blog post.

Lynn

Andrea Tantillo

What about Certified Service Animals Only. No Pets Allowed. Why are they apologizing for their policy?

Also, regarding Sales and Marketing, it's what they do. It's on their resume. It is their job function, and everyone who is not a resident customer needs to know that (vendors, media, state regulators, etc.) If they softened their title to "Prospective Resident Advisor," wouldn't you feel misled later when you find out it was really the sales guy--that you weren't advised but rather sold? Maybe they should just remove the sign altogether and customers can work with Jill Smith, as opposed to Jill Smith, Sales and Marketing. You don't need to know her title. You need to know what the facility offers for your loved one. Just my two cents (or four because of inflation and this is a long comment).

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi Andrea,

Thanks for stopping by and commenting. Regarding Sales and Marketing, I always judge the effectiveness of communication by whether it connects with the audience. My experience twice going through this process with elderly people is that the Sales and Marketing label is jarring. Because of how it feels to me in the target audience, I'm not going to recommend it. Maybe it's semantics, maybe more.

I like your suggestion of Certified Service Animals Only. No Pets Allowed. I think people apologize in this case not because they have done anything wrong but because they are sorry to disappoint.

I appreciate your four cents!

Lynn

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