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April 16, 2008

The 5 P's Of Powerful Business Writing: Audio Writing Tips

This month's podcast (5 mins) explores powerful writing within the context of business writing, looking at 5 P's that will help you to write with power, authority and confidence.

The 5 P's of Powerful Business Writing

Purpose: Know what your writing and business purpose is and focus on that as you write.  Your writing will take on a different quality as a result

Passion: We don't often associate passion with jargon filled business writing, but if you focus on what matters to you about the business you're in, the ideas you want to express, the way you want your clients or colleagues to feel, the difference you want to make - that will help to bring your writing to life, to give it more power

Plain English: Chose the plain, simple words and you'll make it easier for others to follow.  Plain English doesn't clutter up or disguise: it provides you with the tools to communicate with clarity, to let the power of your message shine through

Presence: Concentrate on what you're writing and why, on your writing purpose, on the difference you want to make and your readers will feel you present in your words. (Compare that with the machine like quality of so much business writing.)

Personality: Bring something of yourself to your words and writing - tying back in to your writing purpose, the passion you feel for your subject, your (personal) choice of plain words, and your choice to be fully present in your writing.  People will notice the difference and your writing will be more powerful as a result.

As I was recording this I thought of another two: product (taking good care to finish and polish your writing) and pride (in your message, in a well-edited piece of work) but I'm sure there are more.  What other P's can you think of that contribute to powerful business writing?

Postscript: I need to add another P here, a postscript pointer to Karen Swim's series on The Essential P's of Business.  Karen, I did write and record this post and podcast at the weekend before your series started, and I was loath to record another... Hope you don't mind!  Maybe it just goes to show how much we think on the same lines?



You can listen to the podcast by clicking the play button on the radio box, following this link or going to my gcast page.  You don't need to download to play it - if you click here the piece should start to play by itself (how quickly it starts will depend on the speed of your connection).

Linked posts:

The Ingredients of A Credible Writing Style

5 Ways To Stop Your Words Being Wasted At Work (+podcast)

5 Ways To Put Some Heart Into Your Business Writing (+podcast)

Sidenote: This is the first podcast I've recorded for a little while, though I have been posting other audio material through VoiceThread.  Once a week seems like too frequent a schedule for me to maintain, so I'm shifting to one podcast a month, based on the theme of the month, and with a business writing focus.  (This will tie in with another project I'm working on too.)  This should allow me to keep creating the material to a regular schedule without feeling over-whelmed by the weekly slot.

Joanna Young, The Confident Writing Coach
Because our words count

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Comments

Joanna,

I especially gained insight by your comments on purpose (focus on your purpose, not the individual words), presence (at times I have difficulty with pride and responsibility when the passion for what I do gets in the way). And not last, personality (knowing that everything wraps into the whole).

"What other P's can you think of that contribute to powerful business writing?"

AwK! You always ask the difficult questions ...

Policy: Goes hand in hand with purpose, but keeps in mind the power of influence.

What you write can have the power of swaying opinion and exciting action, so taking special care is advised (especially when the subject deals with a personal passion, such as working on spec in the design industry).

Joanna, this is incredible. I have been learning so much from you that I'm honored that we are thinking along the same lines. :-) I think my favorite tip is presence. As I read, I realized that presence ties it all together. I love the podcasts too and am glad we can look forward to them each month. Thanks Joanna!

Cat, thanks for the reflections on these 5 P's in relation to the themes you're writing about.

Although I feel most business writing is too passion-less there's a balance to be struck when you're writing about something you feel very strongly about, and I like the way you've woven in the other P's and added an extra with policy - and thinking about the power of influence.

Thanks for all these great comments Cat, you're stretching my brain this morning too!

Joanna

Karen, thanks for the feedback on the podcasts! I think monthly will be a better pattern for me. It would be a shame to stop altogether, but weekly was just getting too much.

I'm glad you weren't offended at my 5 P's appearing at the same time as yours! It did seem like a weird coincidence - we must be tuned into each other's thought waves or something.

I like presence too. Works on lots of levels. In fact I might use it as a theme for next year (need to start thinking ahead to my next 12 topics...)

Joanna

The power of P's.

Thanks for the info.

Thanks Terry, I'm glad you found it useful

Joanna

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