One of the difficulties in writing business correspondence is acquiring a business writing style that is both professional and natural. A lot of times, we try to sound business-like by using big, lofty words that are covertly geared towards impressing others.
The problem with that, is that we waste so much time trying to appear sophisticated, that we don’t devote enough time crafting a compelling message. The purpose of any piece of writing is to communicate. To be understood.
So the first piece of advice I would give someone writing any type of business document, is to relax. Think about what you want to say. Think about how you would like to hear it. What kind of words would make that message easy for you to understand? Then write what you mean to say in a clear, concise, and complete fashion.
When you’re finished, stop! This is important. There is no need to reiterate what you already said. I like what French philosopher Blaise Pascal once said about the economy of words:
“The letter I have written today is longer than usual because I lacked the time to make it shorter.”
Your audience is just like you. They are busy. They don’t have time to decode words. If they need a thesaurus to understand your writing, chances are they will not sign that thousand dollar contract!
Resist the urge to sound business-like, and you will find that you are more business-minded!