Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Writing Tips #1: Improving Your Writing

Back in my freshman year of university, I remember hearing a professor telling the class that companies kept telling the school that new graduates couldn't write. Here's some minor, but significant context: I did four years of undergraduate studies in an engineering program. Yep, I'm one of "those guys".

The most common stereotype for "engineers" (no one's officially an engineer until they're licensed!) is probably that they're eggheads: socially inept with piss poor communication skills, great with numbers, poor with people.

"No way man, I'm so not like them, I am totally cool!" - No, I'm not:).

After blowing another two years doing a graduate degree in engineering and working a few years in the industry, I can honestly say that that stereotype has legs. But it's not just engineers, there are a lot of people who call English their first and only language who just aren't the best writers. I see this on a daily basis through emails sent to multiple parties and managers, memos, and notes.

Obviously, I'm a bit anal when it comes to this, so I can be a bit harder on people than others. In fact, I'm so anal that I occasionally profile people by their writing ability. Having said that, I will be the first to admit that I am not a great or probably even a good writer. However, with what I've seen, I know that I can't be the worst.

On that note, I'd like to introduce this segment where I go over some basic tips and ideas that I have found useful in trying to improve my writing. I hope you will find something useful out of it too!