Have you ever written an email that was misunderstood? Made mistakes in grammar, punctuation, and simply could not create a concise message? Yeah, me too.
Now that it’s 2017, one of the primary ways we are communicating is through our typed words. Our emails, text messages, and posts on social media sites reveal much about who we are.
How your messages are perceived impacts the respect people have for you, the influence you have on others, and the people you attract into your life. All these things affect your personal and professional relationships, and in the value, you bring to your everyday life, workplace, and how you feel about yourself as an individual.
Today is the day you take pride in everything you type and write. Out of all the written communication skills on my list, here are my top 10 tips to consider with every message you type.
- Be clear. Every message you compose should have a purpose, be clear, and straight to the point. I’m assuming not very many people enjoy reading your message and trying to decipher every word. Make sure you before you hit send, to re-read and consider who may be reading the message.
- Concise Messaging. Make it a goal to communicate your message in the fewest number of words possible.
- Potential Misunderstandings. Another reason we proof our messages, people. Spend a couple of extra minutes and make sure your message avoids any possible misunderstandings.
- Form Short Sentences. Short sentences are easier to read than long sentences. If your sentence starts to feel long, shorten it up.
- Follow the Five-Sentence Paragraph Rule. Remember, back in the day you were taught no more than 5-6 sentences per paragraph. Well, this applies here and will improve readability.
- CAPITALIZATION. #1 rule, you must capitalize the first letter of each sentence.
- Using individuals names. This is a way to personalize your message. Saying “Hi, Joe” or “Hi, Stephanie” lets them know the message is for them and makes the person feel valued.
- The type of tone. Use a friendly tone while you communicate your message. Communicating with a warm tone will make you more attractive and your recipient more receptive.
- Proof everything. I REPEAT, proof everything and spend an extra minute to skim through your message. Our company uses an excellent program called Grammarly, which helps us check every email before we push send. Check it out here.
- Be confident. There is nothing better than feeling confident and having that shine through in your message.
We know written communication will continue to be ever changing. So, keeping our messages personal, concise, and readable can help us succeed in our personal and professional life.
Looking to combine your written communication skills and soft skills? We are here to help. Check out our blog on soft skills.