Top Three Tips for Effective Business Report Writing by Walkerstone Training

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Application of these top three tips transforms mediocre business reports into documents of brilliance.

Effective Writing, Report Writing and Proposal Writing

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Walkerstone Training delivers a range of courses in writing for business: Effective Business Writing, Report Writing, Presentation Skills and Proposal Writing. It delivers goal orientated training based on delegate objectives and career aims.

It is indisputable that many people find report writing difficult. They are not sure where to start, what to emphasise or how to structure reports. The results are careers which are held back and chances for achievement missed. After all, opportunities are won or lost by the quality of written communication.

Yet, there are three key parts to writing a report which are crucial. Apply them, and they transform mediocre reports into documents of brilliance. These parts can be encapsulated under the headings:

  •     Clear Objectives
  •     Hierarchy of Thought
  •     Logic

Firstly, Objectives need to be clear. It may sound basic, but it is surprising how many business reports are written with ambiguous aims. Ambiguity means there is little hope of writing a coherent report. Instead, objectives need to be crystal clear, quantifiable and measurable. Then every section of the report should be written in support of these objectives.

Secondly, Hierarchy of Thought needs to be applied throughout. Correct hierarchy means that what should be first should appear first in your document, and what should be second, should appear second, and so on. The grouping of thoughts must also be of a similar type.

For instance, Apples and Pears could be under a group heading of "Fruit". Cars and Motorcycles might be under the group "Motor Vehicles". If both categories need to be grouped under say, “Inventory”, then this should be done at a level above the level for Fruit and Motor Vehicles.

Thirdly Logic needs to be applied. A well reasoned report instils reader confidence in reports. Two methods for establishing logical relationships between thoughts are: Deductive and Inductive reasoning.

Deductive reasoning reveals a conclusion which necessarily follows from a premise or set of premises. Here is an example:

  •     Jessica is an athlete
  •     Jessica meets the three criteria necessary for being a great athlete
  •     Therefore, Jessica is a great athlete

A deductive argument is sound if it is valid and its premises are true. In this example, the first premise states that Jessica is classified an athlete. The second premise states that Jessica meets the three criteria necessary for being a great athlete. The conclusion states that Jessica must be a great athlete because she meets the necessary criteria from her classification as an athlete. It is a sound argument with an indisputable conclusion.

On the other hand, inductive reasoning requires some degree of support and probability for the conclusion. Inducing means: bringing about. Inductive reasoning means: bringing about facts to guide you towards the conclusion. For instance:

  • Many heart patients live in New Town and travel to Old Town Hospital for their specialist medication.
  • The number of heart patients in New Town would justify a local specialist heart unit.
  • New Town Hospital has available finance to upgrade its heart specialist facilities.
  • New Town Hospital can attract and recruit the required medical specialists.
  • New Town Hospital should build its own specialist heart unit.

This is a reasonable and logical conclusion. In reality of course, there would be many other steps towards reaching a conclusion. Either way, inductive reasoning is the most usual method to create logical and well reasoned arguments.

Learn and apply these: Clear Objectives, Hierarchy of Thought and sound Logic to the writing of reports, and a high level of success is the likely result.

Learn how Walkerstone Training can benefit you, your colleagues or your business. Contact Walkerstone Training here about Effective Business Writing, Report Writing, Proposal Writing or Presentation Skills. Call: +44 (0) 1252 792 270

About Walkerstone Training

Walkerstone Training is a leading supplier of writing courses to individuals, companies and government organisations. It is a high growth and niche training business which focuses on Effective Business Writing, Report Writing, Proposal Writing Training and Presentation Skills. Its training is primarily delivered over Skype. Course content is tailored to delegates' own writing projects to enable them to learn and produce at the same time. The company embeds marketing and copywriting principles within all writing course content.
Telephone: +44 (0)1252 792 270


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Richard Walker
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