Clarity is key for writing that accomplishes its purpose

Today I saw an article on Medium about procedures for clarifying and creating purposeful writing. It was a welcome surprise to my Wednesday workflow, and it got me thinking.

Long-form writing is still critical to a team’s internal and external communications. But I don’t believe it has to be the challenge it has become for so many teams, nor do I believe that effective writing is the province of esoteric “talent” alone. No, writing is a discipline of design like any other.

The sort of uncommon jump in insight we usually mean when using the word “creative” is always welcome. I find, however, that such insight often comes from a substrate of simple rules for defining clarity of purpose in three aspects:

  1. What information needs to be conveyed and to whom;
  2. why this information is important for the reader to retain and apply;
  3. how this information can be conveyed completely and credibly.

Of course, each of the descriptive words in those three items will change in meaning or scope depending on the intended audience of the writing. That’s why it is important to consider each facet of those aspects from the inside out and beginning with the end in mind.

person writing on notebook next to laptop
The work we do in order for our work to work.

 

Adapted from my post on LinkedIn.

Published by alexandermcmath

Helping Your Business Sell, Deliver, Learn, & Scale | Management Consultant & Futures Studies Analyst | U.S. Army Veteran | MIT Alum | Opinions mine; link ≠ endorsement

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