Business Communications

Write a short (half page) essay on each of the following learning objectives. After reading your work I should be confidant that you understand the material well enough to explain it in your own words and to give examples.

This chapter explains how to carry out the second phase of the writing process: researching, organizing, and drafting.

First, before writing, a businessperson collects relevant information, which helps the writer shape the message to the receiver. Students may expect research to be complicated. Remind them that at times researching can be informal and involve looking at the previous correspondence, talking to your boss, or searching the company files. More formal research might include performing tests and collecting data, interviewing people, or searching secondary data sources. Help students grasp the many facets of the word research.

Second, the writer organizes the collected information into direct or indirect strategies, anticipating the audience’s reaction. If the audience will be pleased, interested, or neutral, the writer should use the direct strategy. If the audience will be uninterested, displeased, or hostile regarding the message, the writer should use the indirect strategy. To introduce the process of organizing, help students see its two parts—generating ideas and selecting patterns according to their purpose. First, through brainstorming, outlining, or the like, students develop the data and ideas needed to compose the first draft. Then, students select an appropriate strategy to use—direct for receptive audiences or indirect for unreceptive audiences.

Finally, the writer is ready to begin drafting. The chapter concludes by reviewing ways to compose effective sentences and paragraphs. As you present the composition process, suggest to students that drafting and revising are two separate steps of the composing process. First, they should get their ideas down on paper quickly (perhaps through freewriting) without worrying whether the draft is perfect. Once they have created a substantial draft, then they can revise, using effective sentences and paragraph patterns as explained and modeled in the chapter.