Several years ago, Brittany Brown completed a major undertaking
CASE STUDY (20 MARKS)
Several years ago, Brittany Brown completed a major undertaking. As a young, ambitious public-affairs professional, she took it upon herself in 2008 to learn how to develop a strategic communications plan for her employer, the Norfolk, Va., district of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. “It was all on-the-job training, ” says Brown, now 29. “I was learning as I was going.” Though happy with the results, Brown knew she needed further instruction to take her business writing skills to the next level. So she enrolled in a strategic communications class in 2010 at Georgetown University’s Center for Continuing and Professional Education (202-687- 7000). “That course really solidified some of the things I had learned and helped to strengthen my skills, ” she says. “And it impacted my career in a positive manner for sure.” She now works on the marketing, branding and communications team at NPR, and she’s back at Georgetown teaching writing for social media. In today’s era of hash tag-heavy tweets, abbreviation-filled texts and quickly dashed-off emails, you might not think it matters if your written communications have lots of typos and no punctuation. But in the business world, good writing still counts. The way you come across on paper or on the computer screen can impact everything from landing a job to securing a promotion. “We all make assumptions, ” says Anna Mauldin, product manager in the leadership and development division at Management Concepts (888-545-8577), which offers courses on business writing, grammar and other topics at its downtown D.C. and Tysons Corner locations. “Poor writing could lead people to believe that you don’t have attention to detail or to question your competence or ability to do a job.” It can also hold you back in your career. “You can make it to a certain level without having great communication skills, ” says David Lipscomb, interim director of Georgetown’s Writing Center and assistant professor of teaching at Georgetown, who taught the course Brown took. “But you certainly cannot make it to top management without being a good communicator.” If you get tripped up by things like using the passive voice or organizing your ideas, there are lots of writing courses out there that can help. They range from daylong sessions to longer certificate programs offered via open enrollment. You can also find custom classes for specific workplaces. (See sidebar for some examples.) In them, students might cover how to use a comma, how to structure a report or how to write concisely.
Answer the following question.
Q1. How the Business communication, report writing skills can be enhanced? Give your comments.
Q2. Give an overview of the case.
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