Business correspondence is any communication or information exchange in a written form inside the office or between companies and organizations. It is highly important to build the trustful and respectful relationships with customers and colleagues. Knowing simple rules of holding a correspondence will help every employee to keep a healthy and productive working environment and this is an important part of going toward any business target.
Business letters are the most formal method of the communication following specific formats. They are addressed to a particular person or organization.
A good business letter follows next principles of successful communication:
- Be very polite;
- Never use any kind of slang;
- Learn to hear and understand your interlocutor’s opinion;
- Be grammatically correct;
- Be clear and brief;
- Don’t talk about things you are not competent in;
- Be open and flexible in holding a conversation.
Nowadays, modern organizations use email as a way of business correspondence in the vast majority of cases. But the letters may also be hand-written or printed and sent by fax. It is not as quick and effective as electronic mail, but these means still have a right to exist. As for e-mails, they are mostly done in a conversational style.
Five common errors made in business correspondence
Business is not always about strict rules and forms. When the case concerns your professional business plan writing, you may be free in regards to format and creativity. When you write a business e-mail with mistakes, your letter looks not very professional. To avoid this situation, keep practicing the next simple rules of correctly constructed communication:
1. When you start a letter, it is very important to choose proper words. The form “I am writing in respect of”…. is incorrect, but this mistake is very widespread. Instead, you can use other variants like I am writing in reference to/ with regard to/ concerning/regarding…/
It is also important to clarify at a start the goal of your correspondence as there different types of business letters based on a context. They are as following:
- letters of inquiry;
- letters of complains;
- letters of application;
- letters approval or dismissal;
- letters of recommendations;
- letters of sales.
2. The second common error looks like a statement: “We would like to regret the inconvenience…”. This sentence is trying to say that you are sorry and apologizing, but if you wish to apologize, you cannot use the phrase “we would like…”. On such occasions, you can simply write “We regret the inconvenience or something else…”. Or if the words “I would like…” are bounden for you, just say “I would like to apologize for smth”. And this is it.
3. “I ensure you that…”. A lot of people think that this sentence is fine, but in fact, the word ensure may never be used with the word «you» after it. The word “ensure” always has to be followed by a fact, not by a person. You could say: “I ensure that we give the best services to you”. Note that you can always say: “I assure you that you’ll receive the best of our services”.
4. “You will receive feedback until next Wednesday” The common error in this example is the word “until”. This word is used only for a time period when there is a continuous series of events that happen. When you would like to inform about one single event like in the example, you should use the word “by”. “You will receive feedback by next Wednesday”.
5 . Many people make a mistake in sentences like “I look forward to receive your reply”. Here you can never use “to” after “forward”. Instead, you should use the verb, which has -ing at the end of it after “to”. The correct version would be “I look forward to receiving your feedback”.
We have enlightened some general points of business correspondence, and we hope that they may help you to improve your business relations and to take them to the next level in the future.