Business Writing Skills - 5 Tips

Business Writing Skills - 5 Tips

Communicating with your colleagues, B2B partners, as well as clients and investors is part of everyday life for business owners and executives. However, doing so without proper business writing skills can be troublesome. You may miscommunicate certain things or end up confusing your reader unintentionally which can lead to bad business outcomes. There are plenty of very good reasons to work on your business writing skills in 2022 and beyond:

  • Effectively, cohesively communicate your thoughts and ideas

  • Showcase your knowledge of the industry and its trends

  • Add credibility to your writing and build a reputation for yourself

  • Leave a great impression with third-party stakeholders 

Working on your business writing skills doesn’t require years of formal education or expensive courses and seminars. All you need is some patience and a few good tips on where to start. Let’s dive right into what you can do about it.

1. Read More Books on Business Writing

The best way to get started on working on your business writing skills is to pick up a few books on the topic. Reading is a great way to expand your vocabulary and instinctively memorize how other people format their writing, sentence structures, and paragraphs. The books you should check out include but are not limited to:

  • Business Writing: What Works, What Won’t – Wilma Davidson

  • How to Say It: Choice Words, Phrases, Sentences, and Paragraphs for Every Situation – Rosalie Maggio

  • Business Writing Today: A Practical Guide – Natalie Canavor

  • HBR Guide to Better Business Writing – Bryan A. Garner

Going through these and similar books in your spare time will significantly boost your aptitude in writing on a business level. You will be able to get a good grasp on what works and doesn’t, as well as how to formulate your business writing voice.

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2. Always Write for a Specific Reader

As we’ve mentioned previously, you will have to write copy for various types of stakeholders as a businessperson. This means that you cannot write your emails, documents, and letters in a single writing style. Depending on your readers’ reading comprehension and background, they may or may not be able to fully understand what you’re trying to communicate. 

Writing for customers or clients and for corporate partners, investors, and executives should differ in every aspect. Take the time to consider “who will read your writing before you start working on it. That way, you will more precisely cater to the audience’s expectations and be more successful in conveying your messages.

3. Learn to Say More with Fewer Words

In the corporate world, time is money. This means that you should never waste your readers’ time by going into minute details on the subject you’re writing about. Learn to say more with fewer words and sentences going forward. 

Don’t fall into the habit of writing essays every time you need to write an email or contact a business partner. Be short and to-the-point and your reader will always appreciate the gesture. This will take some time to get used to, as you may be tempted to say as much as you can to your recipient about the topic. But, some things are better left for verbal communication and eventual meetings – keep your business writing concise instead.

4. Avoid Clichés and Tropes to Be Professional

No one likes to read cheesy emails or documents which are trying too hard to be funny, especially in the corporate sphere. As a professional, you should be as objective and critical as possible in your writing. Here are a few examples of clichés which you should avoid in your business writing:

  • Top of the line

  • Once in a lifetime

  • Radical quality

  • Best of the best

Avoiding these and other writing tropes when working on business writing should be a priority. You don’t want to use these kinds of words and phrases with your investors, executives, partner companies, and other high-level stakeholders. Try to be more reserved, realistic, and focused on key takeaways and your readers will appreciate it.

5. Always Proofread and Format Your Business Writing

The final step in ensuring that your business writing is of adequate quality is to proofread it once it’s done. Read your email, paper, or document aloud and see if you can spot tonal inconsistencies, mistakes, or spelling errors. 

Separate your writing into multiple shorter paragraphs and ideally, assign subheadings to different sections. Do everything you can to make your document easy to scan and skim for important pieces of information. You want to avoid sending poorly formatted or writing lacking in proper proofreading at all costs, even when you’re on a tight schedule. This will further add to your professional etiquette as a competent business writer.


Regardless of what your role in your company is or whether you’re a solo business or a freelancer, improving your business writing skills is always a positive. Knowing how to express yourself on a professional level is invaluable, especially in the age of AI-generated content and overreliance on digital technologies. 

Start by reading more and being more mindful of your choice of words, followed by regular proofreading and spellchecking. Learning how to write better will take some time, same as with any other skill like speaking a new language. But, the sooner you start, the sooner you will show just how professional you are to those around you.