Why You Should Improve Your Writing Skills … And How To Get Started

Alyssa Gregory

typewriterYes, writing skills. You need to be able to write well if you want to be successful. Regardless of the type of work you do, writing is a part of it. You write e-mails, proposals, and project plans, and you may write blog posts, sales copy and other marketing materials. Ineffective and poor writing can negatively impact your work, reputation and ability to serve your clients.

Here are more reasons you need to write well:

  • Effective writing is one of the best ways to promote yourself.
  • Writing well can make people quicker to trust you.
  • The way you write tells a lot about who you are as a person.
  • When you write something down, it becomes more actionable than an idea in your head.
  • How you write tells others about your intelligence and expertise.
  • The better you are at writing, the more effective your marketing copy will be.
  • Effective writing can be persuasive and entice action.
  • The way you write can help others understand more and be able to form their own questions.

Improving your writing skills may take some time, but it will benefit you for the rest of your life. Not only will you present a more professional and intellectual side of yourself, but you can also win more business. And you’ll spend less time explaining and clarifying, and more time working and earning.

Here are some ways to get started:

  • Spell check and grammar check everything
  • Keep it short and simple
  • Write appropriately for the format
  • Read more books, magazines, articles and blogs
  • Start with an outline and expand from there
  • Take an effective writing class
  • Stop using abbreviations
  • Be consistent with styles
  • Proofread or have someone do it for you
  • Use a thesaurus
  • Avoid being too formal, or too casual
  • Know your audience
  • Walk away for a while, then review again
  • Practice writing in different formats
  • Read what you wrote out loud

How many of those items do you think about when you write? Is your writing effective?

For more tips on improving your writing skills:

A Web Designer’s Guide to Writing Well, Confident Writing
Calling All Designers: Learn to Write!, A List Apart
Writing Well for the Web, Webreference.com
A Guide to Writing Well, Fire and Knowledge
Ernest Hemingway’s Top 5 Tips for Writing Well, Copyblogger
Writing Well: A Short Guide for the Apprentice Writer, Dancing Badger

Image credit: abcdz2000