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Best Practices in Business Writing & Communication:

Best Practices in Business Writing & Communication Audience, message, & action 1

Best Practices in Business Writing & Communication :

Best Practices in Business Writing & Communication Preview of Topics: I. Professionalism and Business Ethics (Slides 4-8) II. Diversity and Intercultural Competence (Slides 9-11) III. Fundamentals of Effective Communication (Slides 12-15) IV. Business Writing as Process (Slides 16-19 ) V. Digital M edia (Slides 20-22) VI. Positive and Negative Business Messages (Slides 23-26) VII. Business Reports (Slides 27-31) 2

Best Practices in Business Writing & Communication:

Best Practices in Business Writing & Communication SUMMARY STATEMENT A communication professional is able to convey meaning across various business settings and circumstances, doing so ethically and with cultural sensitivity. A communication professional understands the writing and speaking processes and how words and images affect motivation and decisions. A communication professional is responsive to internal and external interests and adapts to meet the demands of each business situation or challenge. 3

Professionalism & Business Ethics:

Professionalism & Business Ethics 4

What do employers look for in a professional?:

What d o employers look for in a professional? Strong oral and written communication skills Effective interpersonal skills in team settings Personal confidence Self-motivated and self-regulated task management (York College of Pennsylvania, 2009) 5

Projecting Professionalism in Communication Skills:

Projecting Professionalism in Communication Skills ( Guffey & Loewy, 2011) 6

Rationale for Ethical Organizational Behavior:

Rationale for Ethical Organizational Behavior 7 (Ethix, 2009)

Creating an Ethical Organizational Culture:

Creating an Ethical Organizationa l Culture Leadership can… Establish a code of ethics within the organization Offer professional training that supports the code Model ethical behavior Create structural support for discussion and reporting of unethical behavior Communicators can… Be honest and objective with messages Respect the difference between fact and opinion Write and speak clearly to improve comprehension Use inclusive, bias-free language 8 (Robbins & Judge, 2009) (Guffey & Loewy, 2011)

Diversity & Intercultural Competence:

Diversity & Intercultural Competence Among factors driving the urgency of diversity and intercultural competence are : Globalization of markets – technology and modern transit combine to increase intercultural interactions Diverse workforce – people are increasingly mobile and seeking a place in world commerce 9 ( Guffey & Loewy, 2011)

Dimensions of Culture: Hall’s Context Model* :

Dimensions of Culture: Hall’s Context Model* High Context Cultures: Intuitive Indirect verbal messages Circular argumentative reasoning Nonverbal cues are essential Relationship orientation Prefer change to be gradual High value on tradition and history Low Context Cultures: Analytical Direct verbal messages Linear argumentative reasoning Nonverbal cues less important Task orientation Change can be abrupt High value on efficiency 10 (Hall, E.T., 1976) * While Edward T. Hall’s model is a useful tool to inform intercultural understanding it should be noted that the concepts are best applied to specific environments and circumstances rather than a people or society in entirety (Beer, 2003).

Fostering Diversity & Intercultural Communication:

Fostering Diversity & Intercultural Communication Be self-aware but not ethnocentric Be cautious with humor Avoid relative terminology (e.g., many, often, expensive, soon) Listen with care Focus on inclusive communication 11 Things to Remember (Thomas, 2014)

Fundamentals of Effective Business Communication:

Fundamentals of Effective Business Communication 12

The Communication Process:

The Communication Process Encoding A source idea is formed by a sender. The sender wants to communicate the idea to an audience. The information is composed and arranged clearly and simply. Channels A medium for transmission of the sender’s message. M ay be oral or written, personal or impersonal Messages are affected by the sender’s choice of channel Decoding Is the message read or heard carefully? Is sufficient information presented to facilitate understanding? How do the receivers ideas, knowledge, or emotional reactions affect the process? 13 When a message is communicated effectively its meaning is understood by the receiver as it was intended to be understood by the sender. (Mind Tools, 2014)

The Communication Process:

The Communication Process 14 1 Sender has idea 2 Sender encodes idea in message 3 Message travels over channel 4 Receiver decodes message 5 Feedback travels to sender 6 Possible additional feedback to receiver ( Guffey & Loewy, 2011, p.14 )

Communication Barriers:

Communication Barriers To avoid many of these obstacles effective communicators: Consider their audience carefully prior to sending messages Express ideas as clearly and simply as possible Create safe opportunities for feedback from audiences 15 (The Times 100, 2014) (Guffey & Loewy, 2011)

Business Writing As Process:

Business Writing As Process 16

Business Writing as Process:

Business Writing as Process 17 Guffey’s 3- x -3 Writing Process Guffey’s 3- x -3 Writing Process is a recursive process where messages are planned, composed, and revised until they satisfy the goals of the writer.

Questions to Ask During the 3- x -3 Writing Process:

Questions to Ask During the 3- x -3 Writing Process Prewriting (Analyze, Anticipate, Adapt) Writing (Research, Organize, Compose) Revising (Revise, Proofread, Evaluate) What is the purpose of the message? How might the intended audience react to the message? How can I tailor the message to the audience? What information do I need to write this message? Does the organization of the message suit the needs of the audience? Is my writing clear, simple, and coherent? Is the message concise? Are there errors in spelling or grammar? Will this message achieve its goal? 18

Choosing the Best Channel for Business Messages:

Choosing the Best Channel for Business Messages Physical presence (Face-to-face) Personal/ Interactive (Phone) Impersonal/ Interactive (E-mail) Personal/ Static (Voice mail) Impersonal/ Static (Letter) 19 Channel Richness Richest Least Rich The richness of a channel refers to its capacity to transmit information effectively relative to the complexity of the message. Typically, complex messages require more personal presence, thus requiring richer channels. (Stack, 2014)

Digital Media:

Digital Media 20

Use of Digital Media in Business Communications:

Use of Digital Media in Business Communications The decision to use digital media in business communications can be affected by several factors: Is the message urgent? Who needs to receive the message? Is the content appropriate for the channel? Is a permanent record of the conversation important? 21

Digital Channels in the Workplace:

Digital Channels in the Workplace 22 ( Keythman , 2014) (Frost, 2014 ) (SHRM, 2012)

Positive and Negative Business Messages :

Positive and Negative Business Messages 23

Direct and Indirect Writing Methods:

Direct and Indirect Writing Methods Direct Writing Method Ideal for positive messages Audience is receptive or neutral to the message Main idea presented at the beginning of message Establishes clear intention and gets to the point Indirect Writing Method Ideal for negative messages Audience is uninterested, disappointed, or hostile Provides rationale and supporting evidence prior to presenting main idea Considerate of the audience and buffers bad news 24 (Guffey & Loewy, 2011)

Persuasive Messages:

Persuasive Messages People are more likely to be influenced by credible, well-defined requests that are supported by facts and presented in an enthusiastic tone. Effective business communicators do this by: Capturing the audience’s attention Build interest through convincing data Minimize resistance by preparing “what if” scenarios Provide specific actions steps – “What’s next?” 25 (Pearson Education, 2010)

When To Use Different Types of Business Messages:

When To Use Different Types of Business Messages 26 (Guffey & Loewy, 2011)

Business Reports:

Business Reports 27

Business Report Functions:

Business Report Functions 28

Types of Business Reports:

Types of Business Reports Informal Reports Tend to be brief L etter or memo format Written in first person style Typically used to convey routine, day-to-day information Formal Reports Structured more formally (Table of Contents, Executive Summary, Appendix, etc.) Body of report is more lengthy with section headings Written in third person styl e Secondary sources are cited to support content 29 (Krizan, Merrier, Logan & Williams, 2010)

Oral Presentations:

Oral Presentations “Tell them what you’re going to say. Say it. Tell them what you have just said.” (Guffey & Loewy, 2011, p. 458) 30

Effective Presenters…:

Effective Presenters… ANTICIPATE expectations of their audience. “What is the best way to communicate with this specific group?” ORGANIZE content simply and concisely. “Have I developed a few main points that unfold logically?” ENGAGE listeners by building rapport. “How should I use nonverbals, visual aids, and multimedia to enhance the presentation?” 31

Best Practices in Business Writing & Communication:

Best Practices in Business Writing & Communication Audience, message, & action 32 Questions and Feedback

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