The art of Writing Official Letters

ICTD International Centre for Training and Development

How long?

  • 5 days
  • in person

What are the topics?

ICTD International Centre for Training and Development


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Who should attend

Managers, team leaders and supervisors who want to maximize their positive impact on others by increasing their business writing skills which will increase their job effectiveness.

About the course

This course is packed with practical hints and tips to help you write more clearly and persuasively. You will learn how to apply the principles of good communication to everyday business writing tasks such as: emails, letters, customer proposals, business cases, case studies, management reports, supplier briefs, marketing plans, technical reports, tender documents and user instructions. This course will enable you to write more quickly and with greater confidence, structure your writing for maximum impact, express your ideas more clearly and concisely, attract and hold your reader's attention, make a winning case through the written word, tailor your words to specific audiences exploit techniques used by professional copywriters and handle large business writing tasks more efficiently

Course Objectives

  • Write more quickly and with greater confidence
  • Structure your writing for maximum impact
  • Express your ideas more clearly and concisely
  • Attract and hold your reader's attention
  • Make a winning case through the written word
  • Tailor your words to specific audiences
  • Exploit techniques used by professional copywriters
  • Handle large business writing tasks more efficiently
  • Using Written Language to Communicate Effectively
  • Business Proposal Purpose and Format
  • Identify and overcome writing problems.
  • Write persuasive memos and letters.
  • Write for simplicity, clarity and impact.
  • Write standard correspondence and build and expand business vocabulary.

Course Outline

Writing process

Use introductions and conclusions to maximize reader understanding.

  • Write an introduction that ensures readers act and respond as you expect.
  • Write conclusions and recommendations at the beginning.
  • Prepare readers for your information to ensure they understand and remember.
  • Use a blueprint framework readers appreciate for its clarity.
  • Use visual tools so readers can see the organization as they read.
  • End documents with a conclusion that ensures readers will do what you want.
  • Use a device in the conclusion to check on readers to be sure they've acted as you expect.

The Explicit Business Writing Best Practices

Models of explicit business documents

  • Explicit e-mail
  • Explicit letter
  • Explicit memo
  • Explicit short report
  • Best practices for explicit business writing

Writing the draft

  • Paragraphs
  • Paragraph length
  • Topic sentence
  • Paragraph unity and coherence
  • Writing an opening
  • Writing a closing


  • Readability
  • Revision checklist

Module: Plain language

What is plain language?

  • What isn't plain language?
  • Why use plain language?
  • How can I develop documentation in plain English?

What are the principles of plain language?

  • Readability
  • Organizing information
  • Designing an effective document


  • Training in the Best Practices for Explicit Business Writing
  • Know how to give readers what will achieve your objectives.
  • Use strategies to accomplish your objectives.
  • Provide precisely what the person asked for, under the specified conditions.
  • Use planning methods to organize for maximum understanding.
  • Use three strategies to write the same document for different readers.
  • Know how to present topics in the correct order throughout.
  • The audience question
  • What is an audience?
  • Types of audiences
  • Captive audiences
  • Non-captive audiences
  • Experts, technicians, executives, and non-specialist audiences
  • Primary, secondary and tertiary audiences
  • Real or intended audience

Write for your audience

  • Meet your audience's needs
  • Set standards in style, form, graphics, and design
  • Use writing techniques that result in favorable reader reactions.
  • Present the information so readers react well to it.
  • Use the message to build teams and partnerships with clients.
  • Use the tone and level of formality so readers accept what you write.

Follow the simple rules for writing clear, correct paragraphs, sentences, and words.

  • Write concisely but completely.
  • Write paragraphs that help readers identify, understand, and remember concepts.
  • Know the methods of writing sentences that are complete, simple, clear, and straightforward.
  • Understand the correct use of punctuation.
  • Select words every intended reader will understand.
  • Select formatting that makes the text easy to read.

Writing letters and assignment

Effective letter writing

  • Determine the purpose of your letter
  • Determine the audience of your letter
  • Keep your letters short
  • Write with the YOU attitude
  • Organizing your writing
  • Choose an appropriate letter style
  • Choose the appropriate punctuation style
  • Writing so your reader cannot possibly misunderstand
  • Avoid these objectionable expressions
  • Conveying your message in as few words as possible
  • Editing and proofreading your writing
  • Remember the six Cs of writing
  • E-mail is not an excuse to write poorly

Types of letters

  • Letters of request
  • Letters of claim
  • Letters of persuasion
  • Letters conveying good news and fulfilling a request
  • Letters conveying negative news and refusal

Format of a letter

  • Return address
  • Date
  • Inside address
  • Salutation
  • Body
  • Complimentary closing
  • Typed signature

Writing memos


Strategies for writing memos

  • Characteristics of successful memos
  • Language, Writing style and tone
  • Headings and lists
  • Tips for email memos

Types of memos

  • Procedures and non-confidential information
  • Requesting information, Reply to information
  • Confirmation of information
  • Announcing activities or publicizing policies

Writing proposals and assignment

  • Know the techniques for writing so clearly you cannot be misunderstood.
  • Describe problems and issues in a way that ensures reader understanding.
  • Write requests that guarantee you will get what you want.
  • Explain concepts so clearly readers cannot misunderstand.
  • Know the techniques for communicating technical subjects clearly to non-technical readers.
  • Write instructions and procedures that readers can follow easily.

## Course Methodology

A variety of methodologies will be used during the course that includes:

  • (30%) Based on Case Studies
  • (30%) Techniques
  • (30%) Role Play
  • (10%) Concepts
  • Pre-test and Post-test
  • Variety of Learning Methods
  • Lectures
  • Case Studies and Self Questionaires
  • Group Work
  • Discussion
  • Presentation

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The art of Writing Official Letters at ICTD International Centre for Training and Development

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