|Writing Scenarios and Practice|
This section looks at a few of the most commonly required forms of
business writing, several of which can be applied for home use. Documents
such as memos, letters, and reports are used daily to inform or inquire.
Regardless of their explicit purpose, they must be written accurately,
professionally, and honestly. They should be free of error, and be
logically constructed for maximum effectiveness.
EFFECTIVE MEMO WRITING AND CHECKLIST
-- Memo Checklist:
2 Write a memo to your fellow employees
requesting that everyone take part in keeping the break room appliances
|TYPES OF BUSINESS LETTERS|
|Inquiry||Response to an Inquiry|
-- how to get a response?
--state reason for writing that person or company/organization
-- get quickly to the point and clearly your questions
-- don't assume the help: communicate how helpful a response will be
-- if a short answer is requested, include a stamped, self-addressed envelop
-- correct format?
RESPONSE TO AN INQUIRY
| -- claims are courteous,
-- purpose: to make the recipient understand your personal honesty and fairness
-- company response to fair & reasonable letters?
-- clearly identify the goods or services you're writing about: serial numbers, date of service, etc.
-- explain the problem specifically and clearly
-- suggest a fair outcome or solution to the complaint
-- conclude politely
3 You lost a ten dollar bill in the change machine at the Main Street Carwash. Write a letter for compensation of the lost amount.
-- What does this letter accomplish?
-- grant request, expressing regret about the situation; sound positive
-- if impossible to request, try to sound upbeat, saving as much customer goodwill as possible
-- if denying request, state your company's position
-- inform so that a future problem can be avoided
2 As manager of the above hotel where the customer wants to change set a booking back two weeks, write a letter informing her that the hotel is unable to grant the request.
|We can't cover everything, but we can talk about informal reports. You may be asked to submit such a report to explain or inform your employer about an activity you've been engaged in. For example, you may have to write a trip report explaining expenses, a progress report on a project you head, or meeting minutes for your department.|
Trip Report: Often in memo form, this records info you learned at a conference, meeting, seminar, etc. After the memo heading and memo info, place additional info under headings. You may want to summarize what you learned under SUMMARY, explain other viewpoints or comments made under DISCUSSION, and suggest to your employer action to be taken under RECOMMENDATION.
1 Purpose of trip explained?
2 important info highlighted?
3 included any handouts or info with report?
EXERCISE: On behalf of your office, you are sent to a seminar to learn about new software for desktop publishing. You are introduced to Adobe PageMaker, Microsoft Word, and Corel WordPerfect. Write an informal report in memo form offering your employer the info she needs to know.
Progress Report: Write this
report when your employer needs to know what action has been taken to date
on a project you head. It's an intermediate form of communication that
makes everyone current on how a project is moving forward.
EXERCISE: You've been asked to organize training for employees to use the new P-card within the next month. What seemed like a fairly easy task has become more complicated for you when you learn that there are no existing materials to use as handouts for the training classes. Also, a number of employees have scheduled vacations and can't be trained within the month. Write your boss a report informing her of the progress you've made, and what difficulties you're encountering.
Meeting Minutes: Minutes
constitute an official record for your organization. As such, they need to
include the meeting's logistical details (when, where, why, who, etc.), an
accurate and objective record, and a positive representation of the
meeting and its participants.
EXERCISE: Pretend you are recording minutes for the "meeting" you're currently at. After the heading, name of group, and date, list the attendees, and then in separate paragraphs attempt to record topics covered so far.
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