Word economy refers to the art of communicating your message in the fewest possible words without losing its meaning. The written text must be precise, clear, and to the point, with no additional details to make it more impactful.
Unfortunately, prolix is pretty common when it comes to writing content, which means to add too many words. It causes repetition and lack of clarity.
For business writers, it is essential to learn how to convey the message in the least possible words while staying clear, concise, and to the point.
By practicing some of the essential principles of word economy, you can improve the way you write documents.
Business Writing – Pros and Cons
Why is business writing important?
Poorly written business documents can cause a huge loss for business organizations. Business documents are essential for all types of businesses, ranging from carpet cleaning businesses to corporate dealers.
There are several benefits that you can gain if the business documents are well-written and well-formatted.
For multiple reasons, organizations pay attention to their employee’s business writing skills; some of them are mentioned below:
- Improved coordination between team members
- Comport themselves professionally
- Employee retaining and build loyalty
- Identify and correct skill deficit
- Improve critical thinking skills
Bad writing, including badly written letters, memos, MOUs, and other important documents, costs businesses billions. According to an estimate, it costs American businesses nearly $400 billion every year. Some of the cons of poor business writing include:
- Lost sales and business
- Time wasted
- Damaged morale
- Undermine respect in the workplace
- Hurt your organization’s reputation
How Can Business Writers Achieve Word Economy?
Word Economy requires consistent efforts but yields promising results. Remember that using the perfect words is your ultimate goal while delivering your message. You must also keep the reader’s perspective in mind and be able to create a document that is easy to skim.
If you focus on the details that do not make a difference, then you are wasting the reader’s time and your energy while giving an off-putting impression about the documentation. You don’t want this to happen.
This post covers some of the tips which you can follow to improve your business writing skills using word economy:
1. Plan Ahead
Before you start formulating the document, it is essential to write the main points that you want to convey as a rough draft.
Think of what you want to write and how. You can also do it in a rough notebook with essential pointers and tick them off while you write.
Planning helps you in the selection of words and a narrative that is precise and impactful.
If you start writing without any planning, chances are there would be excessive repetition and a lack of clarity in what you want to convey.
Establishing content is important; however, you don’t need to drag the introduction around a topic in business writing.
2. Make Sure Every Word Adds Meaning and Value
The words that you are using must add meaning to what you are writing, which is why you must carefully choose the words that you are using in the sentences.
Unnecessary words will only add up to the length of the document, and no one likes to read unnecessarily incorrect reading material.
You must avoid the repetition of words. Once you have written a message, there is no need to repeat it in the document. Some of our suggestions would be to:
Avoid the use of expletives, for example,
- “There” and “it.”
- Minimize the use of adverbs
- Keep details to the point
- Simplify the text
- Language traps and ambiguous wording should be avoided
3. Compress Your Style
The style that you are following must be analyzed to look for the adverbs and extra details that you are adding to each sentence and think of how you can reduce the wording to convey your message in the shortest possible way.
The redundancy must be eliminated from the document at each point.
While cutting the word limit, you must also remember that the message you want to convey is there.
Monitor the use of adverbs and prepositions and cut any additional details. There would be phrases that you are repeating in your article more than once.
Look for options where you can spin the words and cut the additional details while keeping the important information intact.
4. Avoid Information Dumping
Too often, business writers tend to dump a large chunk of information in one sentence, which makes it confusing for the reader, and they would be unable to understand the content.
You must keep the wording and style concise, but that doesn’t mean that you can dump the information all at once.
Keep your information categorized into chunks and describe each of the clauses independently. This will make it easier for the reader to categorically understand the document.
5. Revise, Revise, and Revise!
If you think that you would be able to create a perfect piece at your first attempt, then you are wrong.
A perfect sample takes multiple revisions and several drafts. Revision of documents will help you identify the issues and redundancy, if there are any. You can revise each part of the document to identify the problems.
Revisions can also be done after giving it a round of review. You can take help from someone who is experienced in business writing.
For example, your colleagues can help you from a reader’s perspective. This will help out in identifying the problems and improving the content based on feedback.
To Sum It Up
Poorly written material wastes a lot of time and effort as well as money. The skill of business writing isn’t complicated. However, it requires consistent and self-critical effort.
Read as many well-written documents as you can so that you can learn from them.
Taking help from experienced professionals will also help you as they will provide you with tips to improve your writing skills.