This course is aimed at people who are reasonably confident

writers themselves. All delegates complete a pre-questionnaire

to establish their particular needs.


A. Introduction

Good and bad writing: what do we mean

Issues in quality of business writing

Review of pre-questionnaires


B. Exercise 1: clarity; copy analysis


C. “Business writing” vs writing

Understanding how “business language” is different

The needs of business writing


D. Exercise 2: conciseness; reduction; polishing


E. How business English has changed

Understanding how and why these changes occur

The context of change; working examples

The “formal-o-meter” and how to use it


F. Exercise 3: tone; register; informality


G. Correctness and the avoidance of “errors”

Review of the Standard English rulebook, including fallacies

Five myths debunked, twenty usages to avoid

Resolving disputes about correctness


H. Exercise 4: levels of correct; dealing with personal peeves


I. Subtext: how written communication affects relationships

Key factors in understanding subtext

Role-play exercises to deepen understanding


J. Subtexting scenes; identifying strongest factors


K. Writing formats: how to choose

Deciding between report, email, letter, proposal etc

What are the core strengths/weaknesses of each format?


L. Exercise 5: the difficult staff email

analysis via formality, length, tone, subtext (discussion)


M: Exercise 6: the much-anticipated report

structural thinking; length; signposting (discussion)


N: The Four Questions You Must Always Answer (R.A.T.S)

and why everyone always starts with Question 4

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