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Lesson 1 A business Letter prof. Adele Limodio English Business Instalment 1. THE BUSINESS LETTERThere are different forms of communication in business, such as verbal, nonverbal and written. Each ofthese communication forms is significant. However, written communication usually requires more thoughtand effort. Writing must be concise, informative and easy to read as both an informative and instructionaltool. The importance of written communication in business is evident by the plethora of forms, manualsand materials that companies public each day
What is the importance of a business letter?Business letters are important because they serve as a formal method of communication between people
They provide valuable information on business-related matters, such as purchase transaction, and theyserve a legal purpose. Business letters also are used as a reference material to future transaction betweenindividuals and organizations
Business letters are a form of business communication with all the stakeholders of the company. Thestakeholders include all those who are interested in the running of an enterprise. The business letters areused to convince these stakeholders or persuading them to agree with the writer regarding the topic underdiscussion. These letters are written as a way of persuading the customers or clients to accept the contractor proposal or enter into an agreement. It is a modern way of communication between both the parties
This is a method winning a contract or bringing business to an organization. A well-written and formattedletter represents the business identity as well as conveys the professionalism of a company
1. Business Letter layoutBusiness letter layout is important. There are three main layouts that are commonly used and people willbe used to seeing them when they receive business letters
Block FormatThe most commonly used letter format is block format. The other two formats are modifications of theblock format. In block format all the text is justified left. The sender’s address, date, receivers name andaddress, as well as the main body of the letter and the closing are all justified to the left hand side of thepage. All the lines start at the same place: they should be vertically justified so that they form a straightvertical line. The paragraphs are not indented. The ends of the lines at the right hand side should not bejustified. It is easiest to read text that is left justified and uneven at the right hand side. This will mean thatthe text is not stretched to fill the line so each letter and space will be the same size. See the examplebelow: Lesson 1 A business Letter prof. Adele Limodio Modified Block FormatIn the modified block format, business letter layout, the sender’s address, date and closing are all movedtowards the centre of the page, The exact place that the modified elements should start isn’t preciselydefined in the modified block format. The sender’s address, date and closing should start at least in thecentre of the page, that is, the first letter of each line should be on the centre line of the page or to theright hand side of it. How much to the right hand side is up to your personal preference. Choose the mostprofessional looking positioning. In this format the position of the date could remain left justified as in theblock format or be lined up with the elements that have been moved towards the right of the page. See theexample below: Lesson 1 A business Letter prof. Adele Limodio Semi-Blocked FormatThis format is the same as the modified block format (so the description form above remains the same)apart from the first line of each paragraph is indented. The first line of each paragraph in the main body ofthe letter has been indented. One tab space is a suitable indentation to use. Everything else is the same asin the modified block business letter layout format. See following example: Lesson 1 A business Letter prof. Adele Limodio Lesson 1 A business Letter prof. Adele Limodio 2. British and American Style in business letter: 3. The parts of a business letter: PARTS OF THE PARTS OF THE BRITISH STYLE AMERICAN STYLE LETTER LETTER It contains the sender’s name,THE HEADING and address, telephone, fax and email logo LETTERHEAD address, and display the logo or symbol of the company It is typed a few lines It includes the address of the below the letterhead. Note THE INSIDE person or company that receive DATELINE that in American style the ADDRESS the letter date form is: MONTH – DAY - YEAR Initials in capital letters of the THE SENDER person who writes and signs the This is the address of the REFERENCE INSIDE ADDRESS letter and those, often in small reader
NUMBER letters, of the typist It is required only if the THE RECIPIENT The reference found on the letter FOR THE letter is addressed to a REFERENCE received ATTENTION OF specific individual of the NUMBER company Abbreviations for the months can be used, don’t write the month in Generally use : Dear Sir, figures, don’t put the name of the Dear Madame, Gentlemen, THE DATE town/city, no comma is needed SALUTATION Gentlemen and Ladies
before the year. Use an individual’s name whenever it is known Is formed: DAY – MONTH - YEAR THE ATTENTION It indicates the letter is addressed SUBJECT LINE It is often omitted, but it’s Lesson 1 A business Letter prof. Adele Limodio LINE to a specific member of the inclusion is a courtesy for company; the attention line must the reader. It is underlined be underlined. and typed in capital letters
− To a company: Dear Sirs − To a person whose name and sex you don’t know: Dear Sir/ (or) Dear Madam − To a person whose name is known: Dear MrTHE SALUTATION Bean/Dear Ms Bean BODY This is the message − To someone you know of the letter quite well: Dear Barry – Dear Sue − Letter not intended for a specific person /company: To whom it may concern This states briefly, what the A polite way to end a letter subject of the letter is. Normally COMPLIMENTARYTHE SUBJECT LINE : Yours truly, Truly yours, typed centrally, below the CLOSING Sincerely yours etc. etc
salutation. Usually underlined
− Introduction: introduce the letter and states its purpose;THE BODY OF THE − Recipient: gives further COMPANY It is often omitted LETTER information or details of SIGNATURE since it appears in the purpose; the letterhead − Conclusion: ends the letter, includes intention for future correspondence It is the term prior to the signature. This sign-off phrase shows the respect and THE appreciation for the person who is This includes the signer’s SIGNER’SCOMPLIMENTARY considering the request in the name and any relevant IDENTIFICATION CLOSE letter titles Ex: Best, Best Regards, Best wishes, Respectfully etc. etc
The sender‘s signature should be handwritten. It consists of the signer’s initials in capital followed When the sender cannot sign he REFERENCE by a slash or colon THE SIGNATURE gives the authority to another INITIALS followed by the lowercase person, before the typed name it initials of the person is put : pp (per pro) on behalf of preparing the letter (per conto di) The sender’s name is then typed ENCLOSER It consists of the word THE NAME for sake of legibility REMINDER enclosure (or enc. Encl.) Lesson 1 A business Letter prof. Adele Limodio followed by the list of the items A courtesy, this tell the Specifies the sender’s position in reader who will receive a THE POSITION “Cc” NOTATION the company “carbon” copy of the letter
It indicates that additional documents accompany the letter THE ENCLOSURE (Enc./ Encl,/ 3 Encl. Enclosures: 1 colour catalogue) Example of a Business Letter - American Style Lesson 1 A business Letter prof. Adele Limodio Example of a Business letter - British Style
Writing must be concise, informative and easy to read as both an informative and instructional tool. The importance of written communication in business is evident by the plethora of forms, …
The body of a business letter is where the writer states the point of the letter. The body of the letter is in block or modified block format which is flush left, single-spaced within paragraphs, and double-spaced between paragraphs. This is the body of the letter.
A personal business letter is similar to a block style business letter except it is addressed to a person whom you already know. Personal business letters can be faxed or attached to emails, but are most commonly delivered in the mail inside sealed envelopes.
Includes the greeting (opening) of the letter, followed by the receiver's courtesy title and last name. Includes the details of the letter. The first paragraph should introduce and state the reason for the letter.