3 Things To Remember When You Write Reports And Proposals

3 Things To Remember When You Write Reports And Proposals


As business writers, we should be comfortable writing proposals and reports. This skill is one of the basic building blocks in business writing. We need to write proposals to secure business and write reports to show what we have accomplished.

3 Things To Remember When You Write Reports And Proposals

When you write these important documents, I have three suggestions for you to keep in mind:

  1. Do not take your reader for granted. Your reader will not battle through a poorly written proposal or report just because he or she knows you, or because somebody recommended your services. Keep it simple. Keep it clear.
  2. Do not write like an amateur. Set out your documents in the correct manner. Follow a clearly defined format that shows a rational, logical train of thought. Write with authority. Check your facts and figures. Your reader will lose confidence in you if your writing is full of confusing statements or incorrect data.
  3. Do not give your client a reason to reject your proposal. Avoid basic spelling and grammatical errors. Make sure that you are writing in the active voice. Use persuasive writing techniques. Poorly written reports or proposals will make your reader doubt your education, your experience, and your competence.

Do well-written reports matter in business?

The answer is yes, writing well matters. Poorly written reports could result in missed opportunities, lost sales, and lost credibility.

We write reports to give us a record of the decisions we take. They are evidence that we have addressed issues. One of the main advantages of a report is that it minimises the risk of misunderstanding, especially when complex or technical issues are involved.

Most importantly, written reports are a permanent record. People can be held accountable.

How do I write a good report or proposal if writing is not my strong point?

If you have never been good at writing, do not despair. If grammar is not your strong point, it is not the end of the world. If you stick to simple, clear language, your ideas and your business experience will shine through.

Second language English speakers have to practice more, but remember that writing is similar to exercising. You will reap the rewards of hard work and application.

Writing Tip: If you want to improve your writing, read. Read novels and memoirs as well as non-fiction. This is the best way to become comfortable in another language.

If you want to learn how to write great reports and proposals, sign up for The Plain Language Programme.

© Amanda Patterson

If you enjoyed this post, read:

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