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Tone in Business Writing Summary: This handout provides overviews and examples of how to use tone in business writing. This includes considering the audience and purpose for writing.
The overall tone of a written message affects the reader just as one's tone of voice affects the listener in everyday exchanges" Ober Business writers should consider the tone of their message, whether they are writing a memo, letter, report, or any type of business document.
Tone is present in all communication activities. Ultimately, the tone of a message is a reflection of the writer and it does affect how the reader will perceive the message. How can I make sure my messages have the appropriate tone?
The writer should consider several things when preparing to write. The following questions will help you to determine the appropriate tone for your message. Why am I writing this document? Who am I writing to and what do I want them to understand? What kind of tone should I use? You should take time to consider the purpose of your document in order to determine how you should express the message you wish to convey.
Obviously, you want the message to reach your audience, and you will probably want the reader to take some action in response to your message. When you consider the message and how you wish to express it, the tone of your message will become apparent.
Suzy is writing a job acceptance letter to an employer but is unsure of the tone she should take in the message. She has decided to accept the position. When she asks herself, "What is my intent upon writing?
Who is your audience? Whether it is an employer or a fellow worker, it is essential that you consider your reader before writing any document.
Your message will be much more effective if you tailor the document to reach your specific audience. The message you wish to express must be written in a way that will effectively reach the reader. The tone that you use to write the document directly affects how the reader will interpret what is said.
Bob is writing a cover letter for a position as a Sales Representative for a newspaper. He is unsure that he will be able to succeed at such a position, and uses phrases such as: Clearly, Bob is not assuming an appropriate tone.
He must consider that: He is applying for a position as a Sales Representative.Tips for Using Inclusive, Gender Neutral Language Careful writers avoid language that would universalize one element of humanity to the exclusion of others. When you are writing about people in general, many of your professors will expect you to use “inclusive ” or “ nonsexist.
The first book on business writing I ever bought was The Handbook of Nonsexist Writing: For writers, editors, and speakers by Casey Miller and Kate Swift (The Women’s Press, ). I still have it on my bookshelf, and it’s available on Amazon. Business writing is a type of professional communication and is also known as business communication and professional writing.
Learning how to write proper business documents is immeasurably easier by studying examples of proper business writing as well as tips on how to accomplish it. The NCTE “Guidelines for Nonsexist Use of Language” suggest substituting the first or second person for the third: Example 1: When a student writes a paper, he must proofread carefully.
For more about nondiscriminatory language, please see our OWL handout on nonsexist or appropriate language use. The Plain English Approach to Business Writing. Oxford University Press: NY, ** Mark Dollar. "Basic Tips for ESL Students: Writing for an American Audience." Purdue OWL, Navigation;.
When writing, it is a courtesy to your readers to use language that does not demean or stereotype men or women. Often, we are not aware that we are using sexist language because many of these expressions are traditionally used in writing, such as generic he or his.