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It’s impossible to retain the same level of retention after first learning a skill. That’s why many companies offer refresher courses. To help employees keep abilities current, popular courses include leadership training, management courses, safety training, and product updates.

Writing is often overlooked in these options, and it shouldn’t be. No one can possibly remember all the rules and guidelines when it comes to writing.

When writing for business communications, style becomes one of the most important elements. Style does not necessarily refer to a particular writer’s style (think C.S. Lewis or Toni Morrison) but rather to the style of the particular medium.

logo-img_large_abc_blocksThe ABCs of business writing are Accuracy, Brevity and Clarity.

The most important of these three is Accuracy. Accuracy is the chief goal for any writer, who ultimately spends most of his or her efforts in getting it right. That means the writer makes every possible attempt to ensure the writing is factually correct, and the language and style the writer uses correctly presents that information. It’s important to keep an open mind and be receptive to new ideas.

Next in importance is Clarity. Keep it simple, avoid jargon and be specific. Facts or information that is unclear has little use for the reader. The goal is to avoid confusion – not so much to write that you are understood, but to write so that you are not misunderstood.

Finally, Brevity is key in writing. Look at blogs – most come in about 350 words. For some, that length may seem like a 20-page term paper, but in reality it’s little more than one typed page. So, get to the point, avoid redundancies and repetitions, and cut out unnecessary words.

Consider this your refresher course in writing. And, ultimately, when you have run out of things to write about, stop writing.