Improving Your Business Writing Skills

    Communication is at the core of a successful business, but at times otherwise talented businesspeople are not necessarily great writers. If you are just starting out your career, looking to attract head hunters or planning your future in the realm of business, attractive communication skills are vital, and will help you set yourself apart from the rest.  So if you are looking for a future in business, here are some steps to consider:

    Get a Business Degree

    Formally studying business in college will give you a good sense of the extent of the field. If you major in general business or business administration, you’ll come away with a good sense of many different areas, and this will make you more versatile. To pay for your degree, you can take out a private student loan to supplement other sources of funding. Look for loans with a low interest rate. Checking your eligibility online is usually quick and easy.

    Take Some Writing Classes

    While you’re pursuing your business degree, take some writing classes as well. You don’t need to take classes in fiction or poetry, although you certainly can if that’s an area of interest. However, in order to better prepare you as a business writer, look for any classes in that topic as well as classes in technical writing and other types of professional communication. This is a great way to get writing advice for job seekers from not only a professional instructor but your peers as well.

    Learn From Journalists

    A journalism class might be useful as well. In fact, there is a lot you can learn from journalists, who are experts at collating information on topics that they don’t know much about and distilling it for an audience that knows even less about the subject. Journalists also must write clearly and concisely and get to the point. They avoid jargon, which is a bad habit that can sink many a promising business writer. All of these skills will serve you well.

    Think About Purpose

    When you sit down to compose a piece, think about the purpose. For example, if you are writing something to go on your company website, you may need to educate yourself about SEO. Knowing the purpose will also help you focus. An email to persuade a customer to try a product differs from a proposal to an investor. In every piece, try to think in terms of a call to action. What action are you trying to make the reader do? How can you push them toward that?

    Self-Study

    There’s also a lot you can teach yourself. Read a book on the topic. Go back to the basics in terms of grammar, sentence structure and punctuation and look at how word choice affects the way you read a sentence. Think about tone, different degrees of formality and how to write professionally but not stiffly. Look around online at examples. Find good ones and analyze them to figure out why they’re good. Find bad ones and do the same. If you are the target audience for the piece, think about whether it is persuasive, what parts are unclear and how it could be improved. Seeking feedback from others can be another excellent way to improve.

     

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