Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Leadership Communication Chapter 3:Using language to achieve a leadership purpose

Chapter 3: Using language to achieve a leadership purpose

The use of the right words in the right way to achieve the outcome you intend. As a leader, you want the audience to perceive a positive ethos in your tone, to see you as confident, and to trust and believe you .

Achieving a positive ethos through tone and style need to possess confidence not only in your knowledge on the subject but also in your ability to capture the content in the right words used in the right way.

Communicating concisely clear writing is direct, to the point, and free of jargon, pomposity, and wordy constructions. Writing concisely requires practice and a critical eye for your own style. Following the ten guidelines will help you achieve greater conciseness and a style that is more direct and forcful.
Avoid the overuse of the passive vioce-the actor should usually come first in the sentence
Avoid expletives, such as “there is” or “it is”-whether for the “it is….that”contruction in particular
Avoid the use of prepositional idioms
Avoid the overuse of relative pronouns-“who.” “which,” and “that”
Avoid the repetition of words and ideas – you need move the repeated words into the introductory sentence.
Do not overuse descriptive words, particularly adverbs(-ly words)
Avoid weasel words, ambiguoes noncommittal words
Be aware of jargon(language used in particular disciplines) and other kinds of gobbledygook
Avoid nominalizations (a jargon word used by linguists that means turning verbs into nouns by adding – tion)
Avoid redundancies

The resulting lack of clarity can even suggest your thinking is careless, superficial, and imprecise or that you are too busy or do not care enough about your audiences to Tke a time to make your communication clear and concise. It take time to find “le mot juste,” but the more positive ethos you create should be worth the time you spend.

Using business language correctly A confident and concise style and an appropriate tone contribute to apositive ethos. Correct use language in business communication is indeed important. For the leader, it is crucial. Your credibility as a leader, your ability to represent yourself and your company, and your ethos all depends on using language carefully.

The language rules that matter – the rule that govern the English language are numerous. According to servey finding, matter is more important than others in contemporary business communication.

The power of punctuation – allow us to follow the complete thoughts embodied in sentences and dietinguish between them. Punctuation makes reading easier and can lead to misreading if used incorrectly. For example, the colon(:) is used to introduce lists or to signal that what follows explains or elaborates what has come before. The semicolon(;) is used to separate closely related independent clauses not joined by a coordinating conjunction.

Additional punctuation rules
1.Quotation marks – should always be placed outside periods and commas, inside semicolon and colon, and inside or outside question marks and exclamation marks.
2.Commas after introductory phrase
3.Commas with items in aseries – usually place comma before the “and” with items in the series.
4.commas with nonrestrictive clauses(meaming that they can be removed from the sentence without chaging the meanings).
5.Apostrophes – added with an “s” to noun show ownership; “’s” is added to singular and plural noun not ending in “s”.
6.Parentheses – used in pairs to ser off interrupting information in a sentence when dashes would give the information too mush emphasis and commas might lead to misleading.
7.Ellipses – is defined as “three spaced periods.”

Sexist language – shows a bias or preference toward one gender over another, often by implying exclusion of the nonpreferred gender such as, the us of Ms, A note on letter salutations, and the use of words endingin “man”.

Employing efficient and effective editing techniques

D = Document (overall coherence, organization, formatting, tone)
read the comlplete document aloud for flow and tone.
Map the structure, noting major and minor ideas.
Add headings
Break up long paragraphs into smaller paragraphs or make lists.
Circle all pointer or transition words at the beginning of paragraphs.
Check to see that attachments and exhibits are idntified in the text of the document.
Look at the document.

S = Sentences (structure,clarity, conciseness)
After you have made any necessary organizational changes, go back through and underline conjunctions.
Try combining short simple sentences into compound or complex sentences.
Cut out prepositonal idioms and other wordy expressions.
Check for lack of parallel structureand misplaced.
Highlight each “this” and “it” to make sure your reference is clear.
Mark “to be” constructions to see if you can substitute a strong active verb.

M = Mechanics (typos, spelling, usage, diction)
Underline the conjunctions should help you find sentence errors.
Note use of punctuation marks.
proofread the entire document.
proofread the document backwards to catch typos and spelling errors.

Making computer tools work for you word processing reograms have made creating documents much easier, but they have also cause some problems such as, jumping into the writing of document without adequate planning, seeing only the screen version causing us to lose the sight of the document as a whole, replying toomuch on spelling checkers, depending on grammar checkers when they are extremely limited in what they can correct, proofreading from the screen may cuse missing many typos and other errors, as well as Moving words and phrase around easily causing us to leave in extra words and omit necessary ones. There are many adventage of using computer tool that can work for you and use it to make your writing more efficient and effective,such as:

to perform your idea generation, recognize that what you enter.
take adventage of features such as word search to look for commom redundancies, wordy expressions, unclear references, or words you may tend to misuse.
Experiment with different formatting to see what your document more accessible and readable.
Recognize the limitations of spell checkers, but always run them to catch careless errors.
Do the final proofreading from hard copy,not on the computer screen.

However, you need to concise and ensure that your language is clear,crisp, and meaningful. Besides, you need to avoid careless grammarical and usage erroes.

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