*This is a collaborative post.
When we’re in school, many of us can’t wait until the day when we can do away with the much-dreaded process of writing. Who has time for it? Isn’t it better to just say something out loud? No need to worry about commas and formatting when the words come straight from your mouth.
Well, bad luck. Just about every career option open to you will involve writing in some form or another. The idea that you can get away is nothing more than a myth.
If you work in retail, you’ll need to write advertising pieces and product descriptions. In an office, you may need to write newsletters or business emails. In the modern age, you may even be nominated to update your business’s blog. And, the list could go on. So, you see; there really is no getting away from the world of words.
That does, of course, mean that your writing will play a significant part in how successful you are in your chosen field. Even the best office worker will come under fire for bad spelling on the business newsletter.
Equally, the best salesperson could do untold damage with a wrong spelling on a customer notice.Your boss would have no choice but to punish you for the mistake.
The good news is, there are easy tricks to help you get on top of your writing game. You might not have listened in school, but now is the time to take notice. You’ll be writing pieces to rival Dickens in no time, with this advice.
Get the Tone Right
Before you can even start writing, you need to know what tone to aim for. As writing is such an essential part of communication at work, you need to take time deciding this.
Sending a formal email could make it difficult to develop personal relationships. Equally, sending a casual note to a serious business associate could spell curtains on a deal.
Instead, you need to balance your tone. With emails, the best way to do this is to follow the other person’s lead. Start out formal, but friendly. When they reply, take note of how they address you, and how formal they keep things. If they use your first name, for example, you could probably do the same.
When it comes to business bulletins and blog posts, it’s best to ask your boss what tone they’d like you to take. Better to admit you’re unsure than stray too far one way or the other.
Once it’s out there, after all, there’s no real way of getting it back. It’s worth remembering that, unlike when you’re speaking, written words stick and leave a trail.
Keep it Original
If words don’t come naturally to you, you may fall into the trap of plagiarizing other people’s work. That doesn’t mean that you copy and past direct chunks of text, either. It may be that you stick a little too close to your original content after researching.
The repercussions for a move like this are extreme. You could even find yourself facing legal action. If you feel yourself lagging, or are worried you’ve quoted an outside source too often, head to resources like this online plagiarism checker.
This will be able to either ease your mind or show you areas which need work. Even if you think you’re okay, you can never be too careful. Better to check than let things slide and risk getting caught.
Double Check Everything
Talking of double checking; once you’ve written your piece, it’s essential you check grammar and spelling. Apps like Grammarly are ideal for this and are free to use.
All you need to do is make sure you copy and paste your work into the program before sending it off. You’d be amazed how many small mistakes crop up. And, doing this on a regular basis could well teach you a thing or two about the rules of the writing world.
Of course, you can’t rely on technology to do all the hard work. It’s also essential that you read back through everything you’ve written. Even Grammarly can’t pick up on missing words, or strange usage.
So, your last step should always be a read through. It may also be worth getting a colleague to check, as well. Sometimes, you gloss over mistakes when you know a piece too well. A new set of eyes could pick up things you miss. Then, and only then, can you hit that send button.
I’m hoping that there are no errors on my part even in this article, hahaha. How do you proofread your work? Share below.