Given our highly connected workplaces, most of this communication takes place online. Not a day goes by without us having to send an email to a client or posting something on social media. In this regard, writing has become a critical business skill.
Here are several actionable steps on how you can improve your writing.
Review your grammar.
Deciding to get better at writing without knowing proper grammar is like building a house without bricks. So get a copy of William Strunk Jr. and E.B. White’s The Elements of Style, Fourth EditionThe Elements of Style, and brush up on the basics of good writing.
This is crucial. After all, there’s nothing more embarrassing than failing to communicate effectively on account of poor writing and bad grammar.
Train yourself to think clearly.
If you have trouble organizing your ideas when writing, prepare an outline of all the things that you want to say before setting out to write. Eliminate what’s not important and re-order the items according to importance.
Write every day.
No one is born a good writer. Writing is like a muscle that needs to be flexed and toned to get stronger. So, do your part and practice every day. Start with your social media accounts or, to take it a notch higher, you can even create your own blog!
Don’t argue that you simply cannot write. Anyone can become better with practice.
Don’t pretend that your first draft is perfect. Every piece of writing can be improved. If you have difficulty spotting the errors in your own work, ask for a colleague’s help and have them read your email or document before you submit it to a client or a supervisor.
Still not confident about your work? Use online tools such as the reliable and free Grammarly app to check your grammar.
Read every day.
Read voraciously. Read anything you can get your hands on (books, newspapers, and magazines), as well as those that you can’t (blogs, white papers, case studies, and feature articles). When you read, take note of how the author uses language, and copy the style of those writers whom you admire.
Don’t know where to start? Subscribe to your favorite newspapers such as the New York Times and read every day. Fill your ears with good sentences.
As with any other skill, developing strong writing skills takes time and commitment. If you want to distinguish yourself in your workplace, it’s time to start working on your writing. If you need a professional editor who can give you feedback on your writing, I can help with that. Contact me!)
Do you have any other tips? Tell us about it in the comments!