Impress Your Boss: Tips for Good Written Grammar

Written by on November 8, 2012 in Career - No comments | Print this page

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Most employees don’t think that their grammar matters unless they’re writing a document that is getting published. What these employees don’t realize is that every time they write, no matter if it’s internal or external, the use of proper grammar is very important.

Many employers don’t look at grammar as rules you learned in high school. They look at it as a way of defining your level of professionalism, and they will use this information to decide whether or not you’re the right fit for the job.

If you truly want to impress your boss, you need to use proper grammar when you’re writing for work. But if grammar is not your forte, don’t fear, as the following tips will help you improve your written grammar.

Make sure that your subject and your verb agree.

One of the biggest grammar mistakes occurs when the subject and the verb of a sentence do not agree. Make sure you pay extra special attention to this area when you’re writing. For example, you would write, “there are treats in the conference room”, not “there is treats in the conference room”. Since you’re talking about multiple treats, it would be plural, which requires you to use are instead of is. It’s a simple fix, and it’s extremely important to use it.

Use the same tense.

Another grammar gaffe occurs when an individual is trying to read something and the tense of the article/document/etc. continues to change. If you start using first person, stick with first person. And the same goes for second and third. Changing tenses mid writing will only create confusion.

Eliminate dangling modifiers.

Don’t get creative with your sentence structure. This is how you create dangling modifier, and this is how you get yourself into grammatical trouble. Instead, simply structure your sentences as normal as possible. Not only will this ensure that you’re using proper grammar, but it will also make your content that much easier to read.

Check for punctuation.

This doesn’t mean to simply make sure that every sentence ends with punctuation (but yes, you should do that too).  It means that you need to make sure the correct punctuation is always being used, whether it’s periods, commas, semicolons, etc. A long sentence can easily be fixed by adding punctuation and making it two separate sentences, or you may even be able to separate it with a comma or semicolon.

Proofread.

It’s so easy to do, yet so many people fail to do it. Every time you write, you need to proofread your work. This means checking for both spelling and grammar. Read your writing out loud or backwards to help you locate any errors. You can even go as far as asking someone else to look it over for you. Sometimes a fresh pair of eyes can help you locate a few mistakes that you overlooked.

The way you write says a lot about you and has a major impact on your current and future position at your company. If you want to impress your boss, make sure to use proper grammar while writing by using these tips.

This is a guest post.  Kathryn Thompson is a business manager and prolific writer.  She stresses the importance of proper grammar for professionals.

Image courtesy of stockimages / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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