Articles

Pre-employment writing tests: do we need them?
21 February 2019

Pre-employment writing tests: do we need them?

Fixing team members’ writing is an all too time-consuming part of many people leaders’ role. Poor written communications not only cause frustration and inefficiency, they can result in poor team engagement and job dissatisfaction. In turn, this leads to performance issues and increased staff turnover.

How professional writing adds value to business communications
4 February 2019

How professional writing adds value to business communications

By the time we start our first job, we will have written billions of words. But does our primary, secondary or even tertiary education really train us for the kind of communications we need to write at work? 

How long does it take to write 1,000 words?
23 October 2018

How long does it take to write 1,000 words?

Do you consistently miss deadlines for reports and other written communications at work? There could be several reasons for this. You may have been given an unrealistic deadline or perhaps other more urgent jobs demanded your attention. Although there is not much you can do about these real-life scenarios, accurately estimating how much time you need, and then pacing yourself, will help you get to the finish line on time.

How to invigorate a stodgy report
27 September 2018

How to invigorate a stodgy report

Are your reports clear, concise and contemporary? Or does your writing tend to get bogged down in too many words? There are many ways to make your report easier and faster to read. This simple technique will make your writing more action-oriented and more concise. Find out how.

What's the difference between tense and voice in English?
9 September 2018

What's the difference between tense and voice in English?

Many people confuse tense with active and passive voice. This is because the way we construct a passive voice sentence sometimes makes it appear to be in the past tense. But tense and voice actually have two different purposes. 

Why do people say 'Pardon my French'?
28 August 2018

Why do people say 'Pardon my French'?

The term ‘pardon my French’ has been commonly used for the past 120 years or so to excuse the fact that you are about to swear or use offensive language. Do the French really swear more than anyone else? What did this phrase originally mean and how did it come about?

Three quick tricks for reducing typos
27 July 2018

Three quick tricks for reducing typos

In our haste to meet a deadline we often either skip or rush the final stage of the writing process – checking our work for errors. Alternatively, we become so familiar with what we’ve written we no longer see the errors. Both these scenarios are common; we’ve all been there. If you find spotting errors challenging, try these three simple techniques.

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.