I’m working on a communications exercise and need an explanation and answer to help me learn.
9.1 What are the differences between mixed and open punctua- tion? (LO 9-1)9.2 What are the differences between block and modified block letter formats? (LO 9-1)9.4 What is the Postal Service abbreviation for your state orprovince? (LO 9-3)10.1 What are the three criteria for good subject lines? (LO 10-1) 10.2 How should you organize a positive or informativemessage? (LO 10-210.4 What’s wrong with the subject line “New Policy”? (LO 10-1)10.5 Is it unethical to “bury” any negative elements in an other- wise positive or informative message? (LO 10-2)
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A subject line is the title of a document. A good subject line
meets three criteria: it’s specific; it’s reasonably short; and it’s
adapted to the kind of message (positive, negative, persuasive).
If you can’t make the subject both specific and short, be spe-
cific. (LO 10-1)
The subject line for an informative or positive message should
highlight any good news and summarize the information con-
cisely. (LO 10-1)
Informative and positive messages normally use the following
pattern of organization: (LO 10-2)
1. Give any good news and summarize the main points.
2. Give details, clarification, background.
3. Present any negative elements as positively as possible.
4. Explain any reader benefits.
5. Use a goodwill ending: positive, personal, and forward-looking.
Use reader benefits in informative and positive messages when
Summary of Learning Objectives
You are presenting policies.
You want to shape readers’ attitudes toward the information
or toward your organization.
Stressing benefits presents readers’ motives positively.
Some of the benefits may not be obvious to readers.
Transmittals, confirmations, summaries, adjustments, and thank-
you notes are common types of informative and positive
messages. (LO 10-4)
Use the PAIBOC questions listed in Module 1 to examine the
basic points needed for successful informative and positive
messages. (LO 10-5)
Goodwill endings focus on the business relationship you share
with your reader. (LO 10-6)
To create a goodwill ending, (LO 10-6)
Compliment the reader for a job well done.
Describe a reader benefit.
Look forward to something positive that relates to the message.
●Block and modified block are the two standard letter formats.
Use the same level of formality in the salutation, or greeting,
as you would in talking to someone on the phone. (LO 9-1)
Sincerely and Cordially are standard complimentary closes.
Just as the way your documents look affects how people respond
to you, so does your appearance and behavior. (LO 9-2)
On casual days, wear clothes in good repair that are one or
two “notches” below what you’d wear on other days.
Avoid displaying too many photographs, knickknacks, and
posters, which can make you seem frivolous.
Save computer game playing and personal web surfing and
e-mailing for your own time.
Organize your desk by filing papers and keeping stacks to a
Use Ms. as the courtesy title for a woman, unless she has
a professional title, or unless she prefers a traditional title.
Use Mr. as the courtesy title for a man, unless he has a profes-
sional title. (LO 9-3)
In a list of several people, use parallel forms for names. Use
either courtesy titles and last names for everyone, or use first
names for everyone. For example, it’s sexist to use “Mr.” for
each man in a document that calls all the women by their first
names. (LO 9-3)
Memos omit both the salutation and the close. Memos never
indent paragraphs. Subject lines are required; headings are
optional. Each heading must cover all the information until
the next heading. Never use a separate heading for the first
paragraph. (LO 9-4)
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block letter formats
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