Courtesy in Correspondence
- Message: 1
Date: Wed, 11 Dec 2002 03:40:55 -0000
From: IOIF Moderators
Subject: Courtesy in Correspondence
In an interesting book entitled "Common Sense in Letter Writing" the
author, William H. Butterfield, mentions "Seven C's" of a good
letter. They are:
Is your letter correct?
Be sure you have correct information before you begin to dictate your
message. Check the accuracy of names, dates, facts, and figures.
Watch your punctuation, capitalisation, spelling, grammar, and avoid
misuse of words.
Is your letter clear?
Every statement should be easy to understand, and impossible to
misunderstand. Avoid long, involved sentences. Steer clear of flowery
language. Simplicity and directness of expression are the best
guarantees of clearness in a business letter.
Is your letter concise?
Needless words are a serious handicap. They waste time and discourage
the reader's interest. Watch out for empty phrases and irrelevant
details. Make every word contribute something to the meaning of your
Is your letter courteous?
Whatever the purpose of your message, be sure it contains no trace of
rudeness or ill temper. The tone of your letter is just as important
as its language. Treat your reader as you would want to be treated if
you were in his place.
Is your letter constructive?
It should be written from the reader's point of view, with emphasis on
points that are favorable to him. Avoid any evidence of selfish
motives. Eliminate negative words and stress benefits to the reader.
Is your letter conversational?
Every Individual is required to operate within the symbol system of
his culture. He uses recognized patterns of behavior to demonstrate
that he has the qualities that are respected by his fellow men.
An easy, informal style of writing gives a letter the human touch.
Avoid stilted language and mechanical phrases. Use your own words
and let them reflect your personality. Write as naturally as you
would talk to your reader. Be friendly.
Is your letter considerate?
Be sure it contains no suggestion of a critical or superior attitude
toward the reader. Be tactful. Try to be helpful in any way
possible. Co-operation always helps to win the reader's confidence
and good will.
From the Desk of the Moderators:
We thank Mr. George C. Verghese, Trivandrum for reminding us of this mail from our archives. Since the last posting of this mail, we have noticed that several members made note of the recommendations, and we are grateful for your consideration.
-Many of you do spell check before posting the mails. This helps us save time in correcting spelling errors, for which we are not always very diligent.
-We are also thankful to you for avoiding �upper case� sentences. Upper case sentences in correspondence are considered as shouting!
We felt the following suggestion worth mentioning here to enhance better communication.
"In your personal correspondence with others, remember to
acknowledge receiving a comment or a statement that was written in
response to your request. It is only common courtesy to write back or
telephone to thank the person who responded."
As we head into the New Year, let us focus on discussing issues (rather than people) and learning more so that we can utilize our time effectively to serve our Lord better.
- A brother asked Abba Sisoes, "What shall I do, abba, for I have fallen?" The old man said to him, "Get up again." The brother said, "I have gotten up again, but I have fallen again." The old man said, "Get up again and again." So the brother said, "How many times?" The old man said, "Until you are taken up either in virtue or in sin. For a man presents himself to judgment in the state in which he is found."
From the Desert Fathers.
"Make a joyful shout to the Lord, all you lands! 2 Serve the Lord with gladness; Come before His presence with singing." Psalm 100:1,2