Communication is key in relationships. This isn’t limited to personal and interpersonal relationships but also extends to business relationships. Business communication is of course a little bit different. Effective business communication is best done through written forms. You will find it very difficult to get ahead in the business world without using certain forms of communication. It is therefore in your best interests to know how to create certain documents and we look at them below.
It is hilarious, perhaps to the point of being worrying how many people struggle to compose a business email. Granted many people were taught business letters in school and now have to send business emails so it is expected to be difficult for them. It’s made more complex by the fact that any time you want to do something remotely serious with a business they will likely require you to email them. If you have not grasped this skill yet then you should make an effort to learn how to compose business emails.
The memo is a very important part of business communication. Sure we’re not passing around little notes with memos but there is a lot of internal communication via instant messaging and email. The concise communication style of the memo is what people miss. I’ve seen instant messaging groups set up for internal business communication fall apart because people do not know how to communicate properly in them.
Cold calling is a part of any business that is at least trying to go new places. You will find yourself in many situations where you need to introduce yourself and/or your business to a prospective customer, supplier or other business relationship. Of course, we live in a world where these interactions more likely happen via email and instant messaging but the concept is still the same. The introduction has 3 simple parts, who you are, how you came to know them and the reason you are getting in touch.
The cover letter is another source of pain for many people in business environments. People often conflate the introduction letter and the cover letter. While they contain some similar elements the two are very different. The purpose of the introduction letter is to make yourself known to the recipient while the cover letter is more akin to the executive summary of the communication. So cover letters are not stand-alone documents but simply summarise the case. The cover letter is still an important business communication document especially when communication entails large documents.
Another letter! How many of these things are there? The motivation letter is again often confused with the introduction and cover letter but is just as different from those two as they are from each other. One way of looking at this difference is viewing the motivation letter as being more about storytelling than fact stating. The motivation letter usually requires you to explain in human terms whatever the requirements of the letter are. Rattling off a bunch of facts and events will not cut it.
I’ve decided to combine the request and application because they have something in common that I think is very important. The request refers to an appeal or plea for someone to perform a specific action. The application is a bit more straightforward as it is usually for an objective that is very detailed and the recipient will probably have guidelines for. What the two have in common is that they usually are very detailed. So unless otherwise guided it’s best practice to include all details on the matter in the letter even if this feels like repetition.
People struggle with writing in general. Writing business reports further complicates this. Business reports are complicated because most people don’t know what, or how much to say. With report writing, you want to stick to the 3 Cs of being correct, concise and clear. Do not go for length or complexity. Strive to make the text as clear as possible for all who will read it.
There are many examples of how these letters and documents should be written all over the internet. Having a template helps but knowing how to create them is better.