- Understand the style in which business documents are written.
- Learn how to write a business letter.
- Learn how to write a statement of purpose.
- Understand the purpose of a résumé and cover letter.
- Recognize the four essential parts of a résumé.
- Understand the rules for writing effective résumés.
- Understand how to make a good impression online by using email appropriately.
- Understand the limitations of online communication.
- Be able to format a professional email.
What is business writing?
You've practiced different types of academic writing so far, but what if you want to send a letter to your congressman or write an amazing cover letter for a job application? As you've probably guessed, the academic essay form doesn't always work in these situations. Business and professional writing should be clear, concise, and direct.
So, you might be asking, what differentiates business writing from academic writing? First, there's style. Business documents are written in a formal style, meaning that you should avoid using contractions and colloquialisms (slang and informal writing). And second, there's form. Most business documents have specific forms that you should follow. These forms apply to everything from headings to what you should include in each paragraphs. There are many kinds of business documents (letters, resumes, and memos, to name just a few), and each of these document types have a standardized form you should follow.
In this chapter, we'll go over the style and forms you should use for standard business letters, cover letters, and resumes. Last, but not least, we'll discuss how you can make yourself stand out in a college application essay.