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Blog - Clear Writing for a Complex World

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CEO’s recent HBR article kindles fiery grammar debate


Does your company have grammar gaps?

A few weeks ago, Harvard Business Review posted a blog by’s CEO Kyle Wiens and created a firestorm about the importance of grammar in business. To date, 2,787 people have weighed in, making his post “I Won’t Hire People Who Use Poor Grammar. Here’s Why.” the most commented-on article for July. This confirms that good grammar is as relevant as ever!

Grammar is a top requirement for us—we teach business writing
We teach clear business writing to global companies, so we strive to make every document polished and professional. Luckily, we have a stellar instructional quality team that proofreads almost every document.

What can a business do to raise writing quality without super editors?
Any company can make improvements in daily writing quality. Let’s face it, we can’t go back and learn all the grammar we missed, but we can fix the most important grammar mishaps that make us look bad.

Let’s have some fun: Can you find the errors in this e-mail? Check your answers here!

Hi Elizabeth:

(1.) It’s been three weeks, I owe you an update on the TXS project.  (2.) We finished just step four of our five-step process.  (3.) Over the last three weeks we found the trial learners, tested them, and just entered the research data from our learners into the database that will now compile the variables over the next week so we hope to be finished soon.  (4.) Eleven leaners ended up being ineligbile for the trail, so we ended up with 139 total learners.  (5.) The faulty results of the test indicates a difference in procedures.

(6.) If you have any questions let me know.



Support your personal brand with good grammar
Small mistakes undermine your credibility. After many years in the corporate classroom, we identified the grammar rules that adults can quickly learn, and we designed a workshop called Grammar You Meant to Learn. If you are interested in learning more about this program (available online and in person), please contact us.


Better Communications empowers companies to make written communications a competitive asset: clear writing for a complex world! Check out our monthly online and in-person Open Seminars.


Many people feel every memo or email they write is just one more opportunity to make mistakes in public. Your strategy of targeting only the most important errors should help these writers build confidence and increase their credibility. Which mistakes matter most? Maxine Hairston identified the errors considered most serious in the 1980s; other studies confirm that some errors matter more than others:
Posted @ Friday, August 17, 2012 11:12 AM by Cecelia Munzenmaier
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