In the digital era, corporate and government sectors rely heavily on the written word to report on issues, communicate policy decisions, and email colleagues or customers. With such an emphasis on written communication, many organisations see the value of writing skills workshops. But are these workshops relevant for managers and senior executives? Our targeted executive business writing training will keep you ahead of the flock.
The danger of complacency in writing skills training
There is great benefit in offering writing skills workshops to staff as a core part of your organisation’s annual training calendar. A popular model is onsite, half- or one-day workshops in general business writing skills followed by report writing training for those at supervisory and management levels.
Although these workshops are helpful, there is a danger of assuming that team members who have attended such a workshop require no further training. As a writing consultant with 30 years’ business writing and editing experience, and a Bachelor degree in Professional Writing, I believe we can all benefit from continually refining our writing skills throughout our working lives. Not only will this make us more effective communicators, the better skilled we become at writing, the more efficiently we will be able to do our jobs and manage our teams.
Business executives setting the benchmark
Managers and senior executives need to set the benchmark for everyone in the organisation, not least with the way they write. Senior managers must have the skills to write highly professional communications that get results and portray the organisation in the best possible light. They need to use contemporary and inclusive language, and avoid current buzz words (also known as ‘corporate speak’).
If team members are being sent on a plain English writing workshop but senior executives in the organisation are not using plain English themselves, the investment in training will be wasted. At the workshop, team members will learn how to write clear and concise sentences using active voice. But if their managers write long, rambling sentences with a predominance of passive voice, team members will soon revert to mimicking this style, regardless of what they have learned in the training.
Advanced business writing training for executives
Having senior managers attend a core plain English writing workshop can be highly beneficial for themselves as well as other participants. All team members will receive the same message and management input can add enormous value to group work. However, the time commitment of a one-day, or even a half-day workshop, is generally not tenable for most managers, particularly at the executive level.
By the time they become senior managers, most team members generally do understand many of the basic principles of business writing that are covered in core business writing skills workshops and need more intense, higher-level training than such workshops can offer.
The Concise Writing Consultancy business executive training solution
Concise Writing Consultancy has trained thousands of staff in plain English and report writing skills in the government and private sectors over the past 23 years. We also offer flexible, highly-customised options for senior managers and executives from individual coaching, to intensive small-group training. Delivering sustained and targeted training that is relevant to your industry and focused on closing learning gaps for team members is critical for success.
Our executive business writing training packages typically include a comprehensive needs assessment to ensure the manager does not waste time covering topics they are already competent in. Training is generally in short bursts over a sustained period and is offered face-to-face as well as online.
We also support managers by taking a mentoring role for team members who may be struggling with their writing. This frees up managers' time and removes the frustration of having to edit or rewrite reports. Delivering sustained and targeted training that is relevant to your industry and focused on the needs of trainees at all levels is critical to ensure a high level of professionalism in written workplace communications.