Business Papers and Essays

Writing guide
Posted on January 29, 2008

In business, writing is a tool used to get things done. Because its fundamental goal is to help people do business, good business writing has efficiency as its hallmark. Writers should assume that their readers are busy individuals who have little time to spend extracting information from a document. Thus, an efficient business document makes its point quickly, often telling the reader what he or she needs to know in the opening paragraph. Extensive background information and detailed explanations are typically saved for later sections of the document.

If you are studying for Business Administration degree or some other related business degree, most probably you will need lots of business term papers or essays that will require the special use of language and that will assume your audience to business people. As every paper, business term paper should go through the specific writing process that will make your paper to achieve your goal.

Whether you are studying business or working in business, you may be asked to write a variety of types of documents. Some of the most common ones are memoranda, letters, employment documents such as job-application letters and resumes, and reports. For you as a student these documents will be assigned for studying purposes and will be in the form of business term papers that you will need to complete during your semester. Although you are only learning how to write your business letters, it doesn’t mean that you should not follow the common rules and tale into attention general principles for writing business papers. The reason is simple – your resume or memo will be graded as usual term paper and this mark will influence the grade for the whole course. In this section we would like to tell about general strategies that the writer should follow while writing his or her business term papers.

You need to write more reader-oriented (rather than writer-oriented) prose.
As a business writer you should have good instincts, based on your own reading experiences, about how readers read; you should try to write that way your business term papers if you want them to be good and match the business style writing.

You need to get a better fix on the rhetorical context of a document before you start writing it.
In your business term papers or essays you will need to start your writing processes by addressing the “big-picture” issues. For example: Who are your readers (both now and later)? What are you trying to accomplish? What are the key issues you, as writer, need to clarify and stress? What are the traps you need to avoid? To what extent does the situation call for heightened attention to visual issues?

You need to plan the superstructures of important documents before you start drafting them.
You will need to use more planning guides and outlines as drafting guides – especially given the constant interruptions/disruptions of the writing process in the workplace. While writing papers you need to remember that arrangement decisions have visual, logical, and rhetorical effects. When you write in response to a particular piece of writing, you need to avoid allowing the arrangement of it to automatically control the arrangement of your response to it.

You Need to Place Key Ideas in Up-Front and Highlighted Positions.
In your business term papers you will need to write more directly, deductively, and non-narratively. Use more preview statements, and visual cues such as headings, boldings, bulletings, boxings, underlinings, etc. (as long as you use them wisely, sparingly, and consistently). You will need to reduce the number of visual-indexing cues; that is, the number of imaginary vertical lines running down a given page.

You Need to Unpack, Deflate, Decompress, and Simplify Sentences.
You will need to break the “one-sentence-solution” habit if you have one. As a revision strategy for your business term papers, you need to learn how to isolate your key idea, look at what is smothering or obscuring it, eliminate unnecessary or repetitive elements, and reconstruct what is left. In business papers or essays you will also need to be shown how references, disclaimers, qualifiers, and so forth can be moved into parentheticals, footnotes, and separate sentences.

You Need to Be Vigilant About Both Common and Personal “Little-Picture” Error Patterns.
You will need to learn how to identify and avoid your most chronic personal mechanical goofs and, if you are working in the group on your business paper or project, you need to be on the lookout for semicolon goofs, comma-set goofs, and the confusion of similar words. In the process, you will need to come to a better understanding of the differences between rules, house rules, and tastes.

Upgrade your essays with these FREE writing tools!
Get started now