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Part III: Improving Your Business Writing > Ten Tips for a Better Memo

Chapter 11. Ten Tips for a Better Memo

No matter what your position in your organization, good written communication skills make every other part of your job easier. Follow these 10 tips for each memo and e-mail message you write.

  1. Get to the point quickly—the reader already knows the purpose of the memo from the subject line. Make sure your subject line is clear and on point.

  2. Be interesting, conversational, and natural.

  3. Highlight key ideas (*,-, or •); make it readable.

  4. Keep it short—generally use 17 or fewer words per sentence.

  5. Write in A-B-C order (sequentially).

  6. If your message includes several questions requiring a response, number them. This will make it easier for the recipient to respond.

  7. Be specific, clear, concise, and economical.

  8. Keep your reader(s) in mind.

  9. Keep it simple.

  10. Keep it to one page.


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