Time to hone those writing skills
From daily emails and memos to the occasional speech or op-ed, most senior executives do some writing as part of their job.
Your written messages Ã¢ÂÂ more than your verbal messages Ã¢ÂÂ help you to be clearer and more persuasive on your topic. It allows your team to fully understand your mission and where youÃ¢ÂÂre coming from. It also allows for greater accountability Ã¢ÂÂ ensuring everyone stays focused on the end goal.
A LinkedIn article on the importance of writing skills notes a tactic used by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. The article states, Ã¢ÂÂJeff Bezos values writing over talking to such an extreme that in Amazon senior executive meetings, Ã¢ÂÂbefore any conversation or discussion begins, everyone sits for 30 minutes in total silence, carefully reading six-page printed memos.Ã¢ÂÂ Ã¢ÂÂ Bezos says writing out this structured of a memo helps promote clear thinking and always addresses the companyÃ¢ÂÂs main tenet Ã¢ÂÂ its customers.
While we might not have our senior staff write six-page memos addressing current projects or initiatives before every meeting, BezosÃ¢ÂÂ point is still valid. Writing helps us, as leaders, become better communicators.
Forbes provides some tips to help improve our business writing skills. They include:
- Use short, declarative sentences. Cut words when you can and donÃ¢ÂÂt use a longer word if a shorter one will do.
- Be specific Ã¢ÂÂ especially when writing an email.
- Write in an active voice rather than passive.
- Be aware of your grammar. Edit what you write before others see it.
Â Have a great weekend. Write on!