Respect your readers

Respect your readers

No matter what your readers did, when writing at work we always need to respect them and we need to word a difficult topic carefully.

If you forgot to pay your council rates and received a letter saying things like “an irreversible detrimental notation will be recorded against each property owner/s Australian credit rating record” your first reaction might be: what the….. and you probably wouldn’t feel respected, but threatened. Of course you shouldn’t have forgotten to pay and councils have the right to remind you, but should do so in different words, clearly and respectfully. If they had done that, they might have avoided the – for some – obvious grammatical error too!

Luckily most local councils’ writing is much better, and luckily I usually don’t choose where we live by the local council’s writing style – otherwise I would have to move house!

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