Dynamic communication is one of the keys to success that I discuss in Straight Talk for Success. If you want to become a dynamic communicator, you need to master three skills. 1) Become an excellent conversationalist. 2) Learn to write clearly and succinctly. 3) Become an excellent presenter – to groups two or two hundred.
Good writing will set you apart and put you on the road to personal and professional success. Most people are poor writers. They are unclear. They ramble. Their e mails, letters and reports are a series of long sentences filled with big words that don’t really say anything. You can’t catch people’s attention by writing this way. You need to write in a clear, crisp, concise manner.
I try to write like a journalist. I use short sentences with a simple subject – verb – object structure. My writing may read a little staccato like, but it communicates. People tell me that they can understand my points and the reasoning behind them. And that’s why I want when I write.
Your objective in writing at work is to communicate – not to impress others with your vocabulary. When I was speaking with my niece about my book “Straight Talk for Success” at her college graduation party, I said that I tried for an “avuncular hip” writing style. She said, “What does that mean?” I replied, “Avuncular means uncle-like. I wanted to sound like a hip uncle to people reading the book.” She came back with a great question, “Why didn’t you just say so?”
She was right. Everybody knows what “uncle-like” means. A lot of people, including cum laude graduates like my niece, don’t know the word “avuncular.” I was just showing off my vocabulary by using that word. As a result, I didn’t communicate effectively.
Write with your reader in mind. Sometimes it’s a good idea to read aloud what you’ve written to get a feel for how it will sound to your reader. Write in short, simple sentences. Use the simplest words you can to get across your point, while still being accurate. Write fast. Get your thoughts on paper or the computer screen as quickly as you can. Then edit and rewrite until you’ve said exactly what you want to say. One of my first bosses always told me that rewriting is the secret to good writing.
The common sense point here is simple. Successful people are dynamic communicators. If you want to become a dynamic communicator, you need to develop your writing skills. Writing is not difficult if you write in a manner that communicates well. In general, this means, being clear, concise and easily readable. Use short sentences and the smallest word that communicated exactly what you want to say. Write with your reader in mind. Read your writing aloud before sending it. This will help you get a feel for what your reader will experience.
That’s my take on how to write for success. What’s yours? Please leave a comment sharing your thoughts with us. As always, thanks for reading.