Some people shudder when thinking about writing reports. Reports take time to write (time the writer often doesn’t have); they don’t get feedback on how useful the report was (it seemed to go into a black hole); or they simply just don’t know how to start (so procrastinate and put off getting it done).
On the other hand, some people have written reports for years. The challenge for these people is checking that they are writing for the needs and challenges of their audience today. The internet has created an explosion of information-sharing and now there is more choice of reading material than ever before. With so much to read, why should your audience read your work? How do your reports stand out and appeal to the discerning reader?
This programme is an investment in time for people required to write a report, whether it be a monthly sales report, an annual business plan, or a report on findings of an investigation. If you want someone to take the time to read your work, make it worth their while by doing it well. It is a perfect add-on to our Business Writing Programme.
Part 1 – FIT FOR PURPOSE
Fit for purpose - the three reasons we write reports
Fit for reading – what your audience wants
Fit for finding – stand out rather than blend in
Part 2 – STRUCTURE
Terms of reference – being clear about what you’ve been asked to write
Your outcome – what you want your reader to know, feel, and do after reading your work
Structure – does it really matter?
Beginnings, the middle, and endings (aka introduction, body, summary, conclusions and the like)
Tapping into the human mind: chunking and logic
Getting to the point – and sticking to it
Executive summary – the ‘mini-me’
Part 3 – FROM WORDS TO MEANING
Using words to communicate what we mean by the words we write
Tone of voice – punctuation to express meaning
Proofreading with a different voice
“I don’t think the intelligence reports are all that hot. Some days I get more out of the New York Times.”