Bullet points help readers scan what you’ve written, quickly drawing attention to key issues and facts. They can tell readers what needs to be done, provide step-by-step instructions, highlight important elements, or list features.
Bullets can be round, square, triangular, diamond, or even customized or whimsical graphics. When listing steps to take, numbers can serve as bullet points to emphasize the correct sequence.
There are no fixed rules of grammar about how to use bullet points, but here are some guidelines. Continue →
Email continues to be our primary mode of business communication. It’s often the first contact you have with — and the first impression you make on — a potential customer or employer.
A mastery of grammar helps you choose the right words and punctuation. This infographic has tips that show you not only how to compose a message that’s effective; it shows you how to create an email that’s visually pleasing and easy to read. Continue →
When you start writing, whether an email, a blog, a report or the next chapter of your book, you don’t want to interrupt your flow by stopping to ponder punctuation. It makes sense to get out your words and thoughts first, postponing punctuation decisions until later.
As you begin to fine-tune your copy, you might get stuck trying to remember what goes inside and what goes outside quotation marks. These tips can help.
In American English, commas and periods always go inside quotation marks, even when quotation marks enclose a single word.Continue →
Email continues to be the predominant form of business communication, yet many business climates are becoming even more casual. What’s the best way to start a message? How formal or informal should your salutation be?
The best answer: It depends.
An email opening consists of a greeting and a name. It can set a formal, respectful tone or an informal, friendly tone.
Dear Mr. Lee:
Good morning, Brad.
A reader questioned whether to include a comma between an informal greeting and the person’s name: Continue →
The concept of email emerged in 1971, and the familiar format — Date, From, To, Subject, Message — is based on the memo format of the typewriter era. Typewriters have gone the way of the dinosaur, but there doesn’t appear to be anything on the horizon to replace email.
Brushing up on grammar is a good first step to improving your electronic business communication. Here are a dozen killer tips from a ruthless editor to help you fine-tune your email skills. Continue →
Does email rule your life? Are you incessantly checking emails — even on the Labor Day holiday weekend — hoping to keep your inbox whittled to your standard for an acceptable number of messages requiring some kind of action at some point? (The number I’m learning to live with is about 150.)