Chapter 8: Routine Messages

Jordan Smith

Chapter Learning Objectives

  1. Plan, write, revise, and edit short documents and messages that are organized, complete, and tailored to specific audiences.
  2. Write routine message types such as information shares, requests, and replies; complaints and claims; and recommendation and goodwill messages/
  3. Organize and write persuasive messages.
  4. Organize and write negative message.

The vast majority of the couple hundred billion business emails sent every day (see §6.1 above) are short messages of a routine nature such as asking for and sharing information, requesting action, or thanking someone for something given. Most of the time these are positive or neutral messages even when they involve small complaints or claims where you request that an error be corrected. These are all direct-approach messages where the main idea comes right upfront and details follow. Occasionally, you must communicate bad news in writing, which requires a more careful, indirect approach. All of these situations involve conventions that business professionals follow to minimize miscommunication and its fallout, and thus keep their operation running smoothly. In this chapter, we continue our applied-writing unit by examining the conventions for the following everyday message types:


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