The pre-planned arrangements are, going forward, designed to ensure maximum engagement with minimum resource outlay. Further, should it be necessary, blah blah blah blah – have you had enough? I know I have.
I’ve had enough of obscure business writing that seems intent on obfuscating the real meaning. Words that are thrown in without thought for context; weasel words that are used to dilute the intention and break promises before they’ve even been made.
Business writing may demand a different focus to other writing styles, but that doesn’t mean the reader should have a business degree and a copy of your Year End Results in order to understand your little article.
As always, I ask everyone to say what you mean and mean what you say. If you find that you’ve written a convoluted sentence, don’t just play around with the vocabulary, re-write the whole thing. Break up your points into different sentences and break up your subjects into separate paragraphs. Try re-arranging the order of your points, if that helps.
Words and phrases to dump
(or at least take care when using.)
‘Going forward‘. Unless you work for a Temporal Displacement company, we don’t travel back in time much. Dump this tautological phrase.
‘Ensure‘ – yes yes, we ‘ensure’ that everything will go to plan, we ‘ensure’ this and ‘ensure’ that. All well and good, but don’t over use the word, it makes you sound daft.
‘Engagement‘ – yes, it’s a big word in Internal Communications and HR, but don’t use it without defining what it means for your company, and what it means in this particular context. Read without understanding, it’s a nonsense word.
‘We are pleased to announce‘ – no you’re not. If you were actually so pleased, you wouldn’t start your article with such a trite phrase; you’d be brimming over with enthusiasm! Dump this tired tripe.
‘Further to my previous…’ – to you previous what? Sorry, but we’ve all moved on since your previous message; just give us a synopsis of whatever you’re on about, never forget to give us context.
Rambling stock phrases destroy your unique voice – just say what you mean and mean what you say in your own words and your audience will be more inclined to understand and trust you.
Bare bones of good writing:
There are so many business words that are losing their real sense; what other words and phrases should we avoid if we want to be heard properly?
[Image Credit: Jesper by Niklas]