BERNARD ABOAGYE OBENG
BUSINESS WRITING REFLECTION PAPER ON ENG 302-SPRING 201
Business writing is a form of writing used in organizations for external or internal communication purposes. Although it is professional in nature, it must be clearly understood by readers without any form of ambiguity whatsoever. These include but not limited to emails, proposals, and memorandums. I knew very little about the course except for the writing component of it. Although the prerequisites for taking this course were English 101, 102 or 105, I never had this background since I came in as a transfer student. That notwithstanding, I had a business major standing prior to taking the course. I was, therefore, more anxious than excited in terms of preparedness for this course. I expected to encounter challenges with writing styles and sentence structure but not with grammar. My expectation, therefore, was to finish as a professional or near-professional writer who can communicate effectively without common grammatical and mechanical errors. The team collaborative component gave me some excitement since I loved to work in teams
The course was presented in four separate but related components-Business Correspondence, Personal branding, short informal proposal and recommendation report.
Business correspondence basically entailed writing claim and adjustment emails, relaying bad news in a professional manner seeks to allay the fears and anxieties of recipients. These required the use of the indirect but concise approach to addressing customer needs while the customer employs a direct approach to communicating their grievances with a detailed description of what they want. Persuasive messages, on the other hand, required us to evaluate our audience and thus employ the use of a more convincing tone to persuade without force, explain without ambiguity and clearly outline the benefits that await them after completion of tasks.
Personal branding encompassed effective resume writing skills, how to tailor professional bios and cover letters to specific employment applications, critical analysis of job ads and job applications as well as writing thank you notes as follow-ups to interviews. Again, this aspect had much of peer collaboration in which we learned from the collective competencies of colleague students. Resumes were expected to be concise, chronological in structure with relevant details that captured the required and recommended skills in job adds. Professional bios needed to tell in entirety, every relevant past, present and future goals of the writer which fits the requirement of the internship or job application documents. This job ad had to be critically analyzed to bring out the useful required, expected and recommended skills needed to qualify for the job. This area presented the major challenge to me since it involved a lot of inductive reasoning and evaluations to know the expected and recommended skills spread throughout the application. A thank you note further tells of one’s interest and passion for the job he is applying for while reminding the interviewer some outstanding happenings that might have ensued between them.
The short proposal session enjoined u to write a short but unsolicited informal proposal. Since this was unsolicited, we had to employ tones and formats that could convince readers of the need to accept our proposal. This had to be clear, detailed and direct with illustrations and data that support our proposals. Incorporation of historically researched data was needed to inform even the layman to understand our intentions.
The final part of the course project was about recommendation report tailored to millennials. Major components included a thorough research with required references (APA) about companies we believed investors could invest in. Although we could work individually, this part preferred team collaboration with an oral presentation that sought to test our skills in delivering presentations in corporate and professional environments.
Before taking the course, I always felt uneasy after submitting assignments due to fear of committing avoidable grammatical errors. I knew very little about the adoption of required tone and styles that befit specific form of writings. My major challenge which became quite obvious was how to research and reference materials produced by others. But then my confidence as a writer has been boosted after taking this course. I have received no comment from my professors with respect to grammar in my assignments as compared to last semester where 40% of my assignments were returned for me to redo them. I help colleagues now with their resumes and bios and minor editing which previously I could not do. Interestingly, had a call for an interview after series of prior applications without any results. A classic case in point was when my academic advisor recommended the course to my colleagues who will be joining us next year due to the tremendous improvements she had seen in my writings. The only challenge thus far remains my ability to know the correct form of referencing and citations to documents. I have therefore put in much effort to learn that skill to perfect everything I have learned within this last 16 weeks of taking the course.