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2.2: Written Communication

  • Page ID
    17492
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    Written communication can be in the form of letters, handwritten notes, emails, text or instant messages, faxes, books, newspapers, magazines, and signs. Increasingly, daily written communication takes the form of emails and text messages. While these messages may be brief, the potential for miscommunication is significant.

    In general, people are better at communicating and interpreting tone in vocal messages than in text-based messages. In emails and text messages, where there is a tendency to reduce the number of words in a message and use abbreviations or slang, the recipient may miss the full meaning or tone intended.

    To reduce miscommunication:

    • Determine how the information should best be communicated.
    • If the subject of your communication is sensitive, consider talking by phone or meeting in person to convey your message rather than sending an email or text message.
    • Take your time to compose your message.
    • Think about the words you’re writing from the recipient’s perspective.
    • Use the KISS principle and “keep it super simple.” The more simply something is stated, the less opportunity there is for confusion or misunderstanding. In the absence of body language and voice tone, the receiver can only rely on the written word.
    • Never use email or social networking tools when you are angry or upset. Always wait until you are calm and composed before addressing an issue.

    This page titled 2.2: Written Communication is shared under a CC BY 4.0 license and was authored, remixed, and/or curated by Camosun College (BC Campus) via source content that was edited to the style and standards of the LibreTexts platform; a detailed edit history is available upon request.