Blog

Four tips for writing brilliant bulleted lists
16 July 2018

Four tips for writing brilliant bulleted lists

Often called ‘dot points’, bulleted lists can be used effectively in business writing to break up large slabs of text or to make information stand out. A well-structured list will make your report, email or other communication easier to read. But there are a few traps that could derail your list and your reader. Once aware of these traps, you can quickly get your list back on track.

Three quick ways to make your writing more concise
2 July 2018

Three quick ways to make your writing more concise

Your first draft of any written communication is likely to be wordier than it needs to be. This is normal. Even professional writers go back and refine their work to make it more concise. Small revisions can make a big impact, so at least one revision is always worth it. If you're under pressure, read on to find out three quick and effective editing tricks.

Australia's written communication crisis: 5 warning signs
19 June 2018

Australia's written communication crisis: 5 warning signs

If Australia is to prosper in the global knowledge economy, the ability to write clearly and concisely is essential. Yet many staff struggle to write clear, concise and grammatically correct communications. Is your team's writing up to standard? Be alert to these critical warning signs.

Reversing the damaging effects of legalese
8 June 2018

Reversing the damaging effects of legalese

It's over 30 years since the global plain English movement began in earnest. Yet many legal documents in Australia are still incomprehensible to most of us. In some cases, even judges and experienced lawyers have difficulty understanding them. If we are to follow and practise the law, most people agree these very laws need to be clear, not obscure. If organisations are to comply with regulations, staff must clearly understand what their compliance obligations are. 

Avoid these three common annual reporting mistakes
1 June 2018

Avoid these three common annual reporting mistakes

Although an important and necessary task, coordinating and writing the annual report often has to be squeezed between other more pressing tasks. This can result in a stressful scramble to meet tight deadlines and a less-than-perfect report. By avoiding these common annual report writing pitfalls, and contracting an ace editorial team, you'll save time and get a better result.

Three quick tricks to make your writing more professional
27 May 2018

Three quick tricks to make your writing more professional

When I review a piece of writing – whether it be a website, internal report or promotional flyer – I can tell straight away whether it has been written or edited by a professional. The clues not only come from the way the words are put together and whether the grammar is correct, but from three little tell-tale signs.

Why your organisation needs a plain English editor
18 May 2018

Why your organisation needs a plain English editor

Plain English, or as some would call it, the Queen's English, sends a clear message that you are not hiding behind unnecessarily complex language. Yet how often have you picked up a report, or received a letter that’s crammed with complex sentences and buzz words? It may be written in English, but it makes no sense whatsoever. Find out how a plain English editor gets to the point and transforms your written communications.

Apostrophes: do we really need them?
11 May 2018

Apostrophes: do we really need them?

It’s hard to believe that such a tiny mark on the page could wreak havoc, but incorrect placement of the apostrophe can create misunderstanding and annoyance. Misuse of the apostrophe can also make your work look less professional. Find out how to get it right. 

That’s no girl: that’s my boss
8 May 2018

That’s no girl: that’s my boss

The words we use to describe ourselves and others tell us a lot about our attitudes and beliefs. Words are powerful. They have the capacity to build or destroy. They can be used in a way to inspire, sell, persuade. They can also become loaded with both negative and positive connotations.

Getting the job done right: why plain English works
4 May 2018

Getting the job done right: why plain English works

Translating communications into plain English for public consumption has been an accepted practice in the government and private sectors for decades. But what about internal communications? When it comes to getting the job done right, plain language is critical. Yet many of these documents are still written in complex and bureaucratic language leading to errors and reputational damage.