Another Workplace Writing ‘Power Pointer’

Based on reader reaction and input, looks like this new section is a hit and you want more of it. Remembering that your effective workplace writing should pass the ‘7-C Test’ – is is Clear, Conversational, Concise, Consistent, Credible, Compelling and Correct, here’s a Power Pointer for ‘Conversational’.

Effective Workplace Writing should sound like people talking to people, only on paper or screen. Verbs beat nouns and especially noun phrases for conversational style.

Old habits left over from the high school 500-word essay assignment turn a simple verb like ‘decide’ into a noun phrase like ‘… reach a decision …’. Then, add ‘… in the process of reaching a decision … ‘ to get six more words and the naive assumption that it sounds more important or sophisticated. Bad idea.

Go back to the root verb and stay with it. Verbs are strong action words. Nouns are static things. What sounds better and more conversational to you? Let me know when you reach a decision … ummm, I mean decide.

Look for more Power Pointers dealing with other ‘7 Cs’ in future issues. And send in your questions or comments to make this section more interactive … and conversational.