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Format for Business Letter to Mayor of a City

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									                               Keep It Short and Simple
                         A Business Communications Project

Purpose:      To develop business letter writing and verbal/nonverbal communication
              skills including correct letter preparation and a review of grammar,
              punctuation, capitalization, and number usage.

Brief Description:    A fictional town is established and businesses are formed.
                      Students become employees of these businesses in managment
                      positions and communicate with each other through various

Time Frame: Thirty-five to forty hours (flexible)

Duty Task List Applications:

D.01   Produce and format common           H.06     Demonstrate professional
       business documents such as letters,          interpersonal skills
       memos, reports
D.02   Edit a document                      H.07    Apply business and work ethics
D.03   Enhance a document                   H.08    Apply stress management skills
D.04   Utilize software reference/          H.09    Practice awareness and skills to be
       documentation                                an effective team member
D.05   Enter data using touch method        H.11    Practice appropriate ergonomic
                                                    preventative health
D.06   Introduce desktop publishing         I.01    Compose and understand
D.14   Demonstrate knowledge of graphics I.02       Demonstrate positive verbal and
       software (can be applied if desired)         nonverbal communications
D.15   Demonstrate knowledge of             I.03    Define Acommunication style bias@
       presentation software (can be                and describe the principles related to
       applied if desired)                          understanding
F.02   Describe and use connectivity        J.02    Apply appropriate reading
       applications--E-Mail                         comprehension skills
F.05   Print using a network printer        J.03    Appropriate writing skills
H.01   Project appropriate business image   J.05    Apply appropriate communication
H.02   Apply problem solving techniques     K.03    Operate office equipment
       and/or critical thinking skills
H.04   Practice time management and
       follow work schedule

Objective:    Students will be able to write correct good news, bad news, persuasive
              letters, and incident reports; send and receive E-Mail messages; and work
              productively in teams.

Project Process:       Students will be given a LAP with specific directions regarding the
                       types and numbers of letters, memos, and E-mail messages to be
                       prepared and sent.

Resources:    Slide shows prepared in PowerPoint; reference guides for punctuation,
              capitalization, grammar, and number usage review; textbooks for
              remediation, if necessary ( I got mine from SouthWestern); video for
              nonverbal communication, Acreative boxes@ for use in making store-
              front signs for the businesses; actual mailboxes (white plastic from
              Walmart work fine--$5) decorated by students.

Assessment:   Pre-Test, graded correspondence throughout the project; post-test
                               Keep It Short and Simple
                          A Business Communications Project
                                 Instructor Guidelines

I.     Development of the town

       A.     Students decide on name of town.

       B.     Students divide into companies (maximum of four or five per company--
              you may have to intervene and assign companies. I had one of my classes
              draw numbers).

       C.     Students determine the name of their company.

       D.     Students decide each person=s job and title in the company (all
              management positions).

       E.     Students design letterhead (complete with address, phone number, zip
              code, E-mail address), logo, and business cards for their company.

       F.     Using Acreative boxes@ students create a store-front sign for their
              company. These will be displayed in the classroom during business hours.
              (I bought crayons, colored pencils, glue, scissors, paint, design and letter
              sponges, brushes, glitter glue, etc. and filled three boxes with identical

       G.     Instructor prepares a city directory listing all businesses and gives to the

II.    Presentation of Business Letter Writing Guidelines

       A.     Use a PowerPoint slide show to present the ten basic guidelines for good
              letter writing. I used the K.I.S.S. formula (keep it short and simple) in the
              one I prepared. My information came from Basic Letter and Memo
              Writing, published by South-Western.

       B.     Use short written exercises for each of the guidelines (included in Basic
              Letter and Memo Writing) to help students apply the principle discussed.
              I assigned them as we completed discussion of each guideline.

       C.     Use handouts or whatever means you have to review punctuation,
              captialization, grammar, and number rules. My exercises were no more
              than 15 sentences in each category. If a student scored less than 80
              percent, additional assignments were made as remediation.

       D.     Discuss the mechanics of writing a AGood News@ letter. I prepared
              another PowerPoint show and talked as we went through the slides.
              Students could easily go through the slide show themselves.

       E.     Everyone initially writes a letter to an employee of another company in
              town congratulating him/her on the new job. I used one of their free
              letters for this assignment. I critiqued it and gave it back to the student,
              but did not grade it. This is the only specific assignment I make. From
              this point on, the students themselves generate the correspondence that is
              written based on Areal-life@ experiences of living and working in their
              town. All letters must be written using appropriate business letter style
              and format. The Mayor (instructor) must be copied on all correspondence.

       F.     Use the slide show format or whatever works best for you to present the
              mechanics of writing bad news and persuasive letters. I recommend slide
              shows because they can be used corporately or individually.

       G.     If this project is done corporately, pick one day of the week for a ATown
              Meeting.@ Use this day to show the slide shows. Other days can be
              spent in the lab. I used Mondays for slide shows/discussions and
              Wednesdays and Fridays for lab time.

III.   General Information
       A.      Hopefully, students will take Aownership@ of this project and become
               excited about what they are doing. As the instructor, plan to keep Ahands
               off@ as much as possible but intervene if necessary. I have already
               discovered that it is very necessary to approve all company names,
               letterheads, business cards, and display signs.

       B.      The Lap for this project is included in this packet. The Lap includes
               specific directions regarding preparation of letters, what kind of letters
               will be written, and how many of each kind are required. The number of
               required letters and memos is up to each individual instructor. I also
               included E-Mail messages in the requirements. An incident report could
               be an additional assignment.
       C.      Develop a checksheet that lists all letters, memos, and E-Mail, graded and
               free (one is included in this information). I suggest you make one for
               each student and use this to keep track of the correspondence as you
               receive your copy. Most students will not keep up with what they have
               done and will ask you on a daily basis.

                             Keep It Short and Simple--Lap
                           A Business Communications Project

Text: Basic Letter and Memo Writing, 3d Edition, Susie H. VanHuss, SouthWestern
       Publishing Company, Cincinnati, Ohio.

       Compact Summary Guides for Punctuation, Capitalization, Word Usage,

Description: Various types of business letters will be discussed with emphasis on the
                  ten basic guidelines of good letter writing and the preparation of good
                  news, bad news, and persuasive letters, as well as an incident report.

Course Outline:

            CHAPTER                                       ACTIVITY
Ten Guides for Effective Writing     PowerPoint Presentation
       Guide 3 Application           #1-15, even
       Guide 5 Application           #1-12, odd
       Guide 6 Application           #1-10, all
       Guide 7 Application           #1-10, even
       Guide 8 Application           #1-12, even
Grammar/Punctuation/Numbers/         Pg. 74-75--Grammar, Rules 1-10 & Sentences 1-15
Capitalization Reviews               Pg. 110-111--Punctuation, Rules 1-10 & Sentences 1-15
                                     Pg. 140-141--Capitalization, Rules 1-10 & Sentences 1-
                                         Pg. 168-170--Numbers, Rules 1-10 & Sentences 1-14
Positive Messages                        Slide Show and Class Discussion
Negative Messages                        Slide Show and Class Discussion
Persuasive Messages                      Slide Show and Class Discussion
Incident Report                          Class Discussion
Non-verbal communication                 Video

Course Requirements:

                 A creative spirit                                    A desire to have fun
                 The willingness to work as a team                    A positive attitude

                    Every job is a self-portrait of the person who does it.   
                             Autograph your work with excellence


       TO:        Business Communications Students

   FROM:          Mrs. Hughes, Instructor

   DATE:          July 16, 2010

SUBJECT:          Class Procedures

In this class you will learn to write good business letters by following the ten basic
guidelines of good letter writing and by tailoring your writing according to purpose,
audience, and subject.

Morning and afternoon classes will be divided into companies, all within the same town,
with each student employed in a managment position within his or her company.
Correspondence will result from Areal-life@ situations encountered as an employee in
your specific business. Active participation of every student is essential to success. Each
company will design its own, original letterhead and will use it on all of its business
correspondence. A company sign will also be made and posted during regular business
hours. Hours of operation for the morning will be 9:45-10:50; afternoon hours will be
2:15 p.m.-3:25 p.m.

You will write a variety of letters, memos, and reports during this class. ALL papers
must be done according to appropriate style and format. Town meetings will be held
on Mondays; Wednesdays and Fridays will be devoted to preparing original
correspondence and answering your incoming mail. Identify each letter and memo in the
upper right-hand corner. A detailed listing of required memos, letters, and reports will be
supplied to each student.

       TO:     Business Communications Students

   FROM:       Mrs. Hughes, Instructor

   DATE:       July 16, 2010

SUBJECT:       Letter and Memo Requirements

Each student will write four memos, seven letters, two E-Mail messages, and one incident
report for grading purposes. These letters and memos will be written as a result of the
business being done by your company. You will also have a minimum offive free letters,
three free memos, and one free E-Mail message that will not be Agraded@ but must be
included with the graded correspondence in a portfolio. You may write more if you like.

You can use the free memos and letters to answer correspondence that you receive and to
have your initial attempt at writing a good news, bad news, and persuasive letter critiqued
by the instructor. The portfolio will be worth 100 points. Each student will also prepare
an incident report, which will be discussed in more detail later. A list of all required
correspondence is attached.

If you have any questions, please let me know.


Memo A (Good News)                                           Some form of good news.
Memo B (Neutral)                                                     A memo about a
                                             meeting, job performance. A request for
                                             materials, etc.
Memo C (Writer=s Choice)                                     This is your choice--just like
                                             the Afree@ memos you have but this one
                                             gets graded!
Memo D (Bad News)                                                    If bad news, start with
                                             a buffer statement.

Letters A & B (Good News)                                   Remember K.I.S.S.; state the
                                             good news, give any details, close with
                                             positive statement.
Letter C (Letter of Inquiry)                                Request for services or
Letter D (Bad News--Negative Response) Letter that turns down someone=s request
                                       for something. You must avoid the word
                                       Ano@. Start with a buffer. Do not leave
                                       the opportunity to reopen discussion. Finish
                                       your letter by establishing good will.
Letter E (Bad News--Complaint)                 Complaint letter from business or
                                       personal perspective. If personal, letter must
                                       NOT be on business letterhead. Be specific
                                       regarding your complaint and request what
                                       action you want taken.
Letter F (Persuasive)                                            Persuade someone to
                                       do something they may not want to do.
Letter G (Writer=s Choice)                              This is your choice--just like
                                       the free letters, but this one is graded.

E-Mail A (Request for Information)               Use GroupWise--print a copy of the
                                          message to turn in.
E-Mail B (Writer=s Choice)                               This is your choice, but it is
                                          graded. Print a copy to turn in.
                           Business Correspondence Check Sheet

Name _________________________

LETTER                       GRADE                         DATE
Free Letter 1 (Good News)
Free Letter 2 (Bad News)
Free Letter 3
Free Memo 1
Free Memo 2
Free Memo 3
Letter A (GN)
Letter B (GN)
Letter C (Inquiry)
Letter D (BN)
Letter F (Complaint)
Letter G (Persuasive)
Letter H (Writer=s Choice)
Memo A (GN)
Memo B (Neutral)
Memo C (Writer=s Choice)
Memo D (BN)
E-Mail A (Request for Info)
E-Mail B (Writer=s Choice)

    K.I.S.S.--A Business Communications
                                      Pre/Post Test

PART 1 - 50 points

1.     Before actually writing a business letter, the author should prepare carefully.
       Describe the things the writer should do in this planning process.

2.     Overuse of the pronoun I makes the writer appear to be self-centered. Write from
       the viewpoint of the reader, which is often referred to as writing with a

3.     The basic objective of every business letter, whether it be good news, bad news,
       or persuasive, is to                                                .

4.            T or F Humor is appropriate is some situations and should be used with
              care when writing business letters.

5.     List the three parts of the good news letter plan.



6.     What is a buffer?

7.     Where is the correct placement for a buffer in a business letter?
 8.    Explain the five steps for writing a bad news letter.

9.     Explain AIDA with regard to writing a persuasive letter.

10.           T or F A good technique to use when writing a bad news letter is to say
              what you can do rather than what you cannot do.

Part 2 - 200 points
Your assignment is to write two letters to me, Vicky Hughes, Mayor. Both letters are to
be written on your company letterhead. Write using correct letter style and proper
mechanics (spelling, punctuation, capitalization, number usage, etc). My address is 1997
Directors Lane, Ourtown, OK 90210.

Letter 1 - Good New--grand opening of your second store
Letter 2 - Bad News--your business is closing (you decide the reason).

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