May 20, 2010

Ad Man's Book Club: May 2010 Choice

Writing That Works: How to Communicate Effectively in Business - Kenneth Roman and Joel Raphaelson

"It's the Strunk and White of the business world" promises the cover.

I read The Elements of Style by William Strunk and E.B. White, after Matti Apunen, editor in chief of Aamulehti (Finland's second largest newspaper) recommended it to me when I asked him how to write better.

This article should be a triumph for both books, but because we are both in a hurry, let's focus today on Writing That Works.

You may be surprised how much you write. Today emails, Twitter and Facebook force you to write much more than you would have ten years ago – and it's public. How many emails do you send daily? How people see you based on your emails?

Here is my point. You will be judged based on your writing more and your physical presence less. While people skills are probably the most important skills you will ever need in life, today, it is your writing in business that people judge before you get to meet them.

Think about what Google does. It's a master at scanning and understanding text. For Google, pictures are still secondary. If over 90 per cent of business starts from a Google search, how important is your written material?

Let's boldly assume that you are now just a little more motivated to learn how to improve your writing. Writing That Works is just the right tool for you. It's clear, easy to read and has less than 200 pages.

Writing That Works will teach you how to write:
  • Presentations that move ideas to action
  • Memos and letters that get things done
  • Plans and reports that make things happen
  • Fund-raising and sales letters that produce results
  • Resumes and letters that lead to interviews
  • Speeches that make a point

Why should you listen to these authors?
Kenneth Roman is former Chairman and CEO of Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide. Joel Raphaelson is former Executive Creative Director of the same company. After David Ogilvy finished writing Ogilvy on Advertising, he sent it to Joel with a note saying: "Please improve".

By the way, a good to way improve your writing is to read more.

You can get Writing That Works from Amazon

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