Writing a business letter does not have to feel like a titanic endeavor. With a little assistance you can create a concise and engaging letter. The formatting will be the most challenging aspect of this undertaking. However, there are a number of tips available for you here that will help you garner the actions you desire.
You will need to ensure that your letter is the most eye catching and appealing piece of paper your recipient has acquired. This means making sure that you get top of the line paper, preferably linen, to print the actual letter on. And, if you have access to fancy company letterhead that is an advisable choice as well.
Your business letter should include pertinent information: month, day, year, your name, address, and contact information. These should align with the left margin creating separate lines for each piece of information. Then a little further down you should include the subject matter of the letter in a brief statement. For example you might want to write: RE- Friday’s Lunch Conversation.
At this stage you will speak directly to the recipient in a salutation. Since it is a business letter, not one to a friend, you will need to ensure that you use the appropriate respect. When done properly, a business letter will not start out with, Hi, Steve! Instead you will use the full name and a proper gender sensitive title. So, your letter should state, Dear Mr. Steve Richards, or Dear Mr. Richards. If gender is unknown, leave off the gender specific title and utilize the full name.
The Actual Letter
Once you have the important information and greeting down, it is time to write the actual letter. Remember that this is a business document so conversational tone does not give you leeway to make small talk or try to play buddy with the recipient. Remember that time is money so the less time you take away from the recipient’s day, the better received your letter will be.
The body of your letter needs to be short and sweet. Make definitive statements that convey clear ideas. Be very specific. Employ details that will ensure your reader understands exactly what you are talking about. And, do not try to be all flowery in your conversation. Be sincere and straight to the point. If an apology is necessary, be personal, do not shift blame or be falsely courteous.
Do not, under any circumstance, use a form letter. These are quite readily thrown in the trash. Since you want to be a standout, do not cheat the system by copying and pasting someone else’s design. Make your letter true to your personality and the topic at hand so that an impression can be made on your reader.
Watch your tone, too. In the business world it is assumed that a position of distance is the best one to take when penning a letter. However, people really do not like to feel as though the person writing to them is cold. Consider the person you are writing to and the type of letter you are creating. Imagine being on the other side of this letter. How would you best like to receive this information? Explain your answers in a way that is friendly and firm simultaneously. That way there can be no miscommunications.
Consider your personal opinions. Once again, this is a business letter and those positions probably do not have a place in its creation. Even if the person you are writing to appears to be a dunce, do not show your condescension or ego in any way. And, do not reveal any anger in your style.These types of letters have a way of coming back at you if you do not guard your tongue. If this letter is going to include a touchy subject for you, let it rest a while before you break out the pen and paper.
Take the time to read and reread your letter to ensure it meets with all the previous cited requirements. Then guarantee that you were able to keep all personal opinions, irritations, and feelings of superiority out of the script. Finally, it is time to write your concluding statements.
A good conclusion will include a summation of the body of the letter. It will remind the reader of what has been discussed. Then it will suggest the steps that will need to be taken, or reveal the actions the reader should expect. After reading this, the reader should have no further questions.
You will then skip a few lines and include the formal closing statement. This is generally, Sincerely, and your name, position, and company. Essentially you will have written a business letter that follows this format design:
- Pertinent Information- Your name and company information along with the date.
- Statement of Causation- The catalyst for the letter, what it is in reference to.
- Salutation- A greeting to the recipient.
- Focus of the Letter- The body and full explanation for the creation of the letter.
- Summation- A brief restatement of all that has been covered in the piece.
- Explanation of Further Requirements- What the reader is to expect, or do, after receiving the letter.
- Closing- You are signing off.
Before You Send it
This might come as a shock but people daily receive letters that are full of errors. This is why it is imperative that you take some steps to guarantee you have written a proper letter before you send it. Go back over your name, address, position, and company information. You would be surprised at how many misspell their own names when writing business letters and resumes.
Finally, read your letter out loud. This will help you take note of typos, deleted words, misspellings, and grammatical issues. You must revise and correct all these things before signing and sealing that letter. You do not want to come across as the less educated person in this situation.
Following this format and these business letter suggestions will help you write a well-written paper from scratch.