How To Write A Business Report
Writing an effective business report can be tricky at times. Using this simple and easy-to-remember five-step process, you'll soon find your business reports are being written with POWER.
I'm going to give you a five-stage formula for writing an effective and powerful business report. Stage one - I call Prepare, and that's essential because you've got to ask yourself some fundamental questions before you think about writing your report, really. First is, have you got enough information? From the right sources? Do you know what you're trying to do? Do you know who's going to read it? Step two - Organise.
And what you're doing in organising is creating headings and sections, so that your report has a shape and a structure. That's absolutely vital. Only now can you move to stage three, which is Write.
So now, just go ahead and write, and let it flow. You don't have to look for perfection in your first draft. This is only a first draft - things you don't like, you can go back and change.
So, really let it go, and keep your purpose always in mind. So, you've written your first draft. Now, you come to stage four -Edit.
This is when you reassess everything you've written from the reader's point of view. What you need to do when you're editing is come fresh to the subject. So you're putting yourself in the readers' shoes and thinking, “Okay, what impression would this make on me if I were reading it for the first time?” And that's what you're trying to do as you go through.
So you're checking everything against that. And if passages feel awkward, you're going to rewrite them, but don't forget stage five - The Read-through. Now, this is where you're reading through, we call it proofreading sometimes.
It may have elements of editing. If you spot something, you can edit it, but essentially, this is a last check to make sure you haven't left anything ambiguous, you haven't said anything you might have caused to regret. Do it very, very carefully, make sure you haven't made any mistakes, and now, you've done everything you can.
You've followed the five stages. You will have a powerful business report. And it's no coincidence that each of those stages starts with a letter - P, then O, then W, then E, then R.
So it's a nice mnemonic for you to remember. POWER. .