Yesterday I asked Sarah Fox, the 500 word lawyer and advocate for plain English in legal writing, about whether there truly was a problem with clarity in the legal profession.
Today I ask Sarah about the benefits of writing clearly.
The benefits of effective writing are clear.
1. Action: when your reader understands the next steps you want her to take, she’s more likely to do so; the clearer your writing, the quicker your reader can understand and act upon what she’s read.
2. Boldness: good communication builds trust, and helps your reader believe in you and your conclusions; a bold message is easily grasped.
3. Credibility: it inspires confidence in both the reader and the writer – clear writing is evidence of clear thinking.
4. Efficient: effective writing is succinct. Shorter documents are more likely to be read, create fewer misunderstandings and less frustration for your readers. Badly-written communications lead to increased administration, as well as loss of clients, projects or more disputes.
Effective writing is simple. It involves two distinct aspects of knowledge and skills – learning what to write and how to write.
Tomorrow I will be asking Sarah about “how” – how we can all write better.
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