Skills of Workplace Communication: A Handbook for TandD Specialists and Their Organizations

By Richard P. Picardi | Go to book overview

19
The Content and
Structure of the Formal
Report
More than any other form of business writing, formal reports require attention to four promoters of successful communication, highlighted in Chapter 1.
1. Preparation. Getting ready for the specific task that is about to occur, whether a memo, letter, or a report, is a deliberate process. By definition, a formal report requires the greatest amount of planning and preparation.
2. Precision. Being “on the mark,” or right on target with ideas and expression as opposed to “far afield” or “out in left field.” Precision and clarity go hand in hand with preparation. The length of a formal report cannot be allowed to dilute the clarity of its message.
3. Presence. Having the ability to convey a sense of poise and self-assurance. This capacity results from being prepared internally and externally—mentally and physically. Being at once calm yet ready for action gives one what is called a compelling personality, one that inspires respect and confidence. Reports that are carefully planned, written, and visually striking inspire respect and confidence in the validity of their findings.
4. Preference. This quality of successful report communicators works in two ways. Because they have prepared themselves for the specific report subject at hand, they enjoy the ability to make choices jointly with managers. Because they deliver a report with

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