Monday, January 17, 2011
A failure to communicate
The internet has brought a screaming welter of English as a second language communication—even from people who speak only English.
Stupid, confusing, cliched, jargony, and SHORT—140 characters.
And this is just the business stuff.
Anita Bruzzese, CareerBuilder, asks if you have ever written the phrase “multiple regression analysis.”
If so, wash your computer out with soap!
Poor writing means people aren’t thinking the same thing—and then will make poor decisions.
Many companies do not think this is important—itself a poor decision. They don’t offer writing classes.
Get a book called Be a Brilliant Business Writer by Diana Young.
Think about making your first sentence answer, “So what?”
Include only relevant content. Just because you know it, Bruzzese says, doesn't mean it belongs in your memo, white paper, or email.
Make the paper visually appealing--no big gray blocks of prose clumping down the page.
Forget the ten-dollar words. Don’t say aggregate-say total. Use instead of utilize.
Keep sentences under 28 words.
I have done something to my MS Word under Tools that tells me the reading level after it spellchecks. Sixth grade is fine, even for physicians, I have found.