Skillset New Zealand Blog

Ideas to help your team develop personally and professionally.

Imagine opening a letter from your insurance company. You've claimed on damage to your car. It will be a massive bill and you are about to discover whether the insurance company will cover it.

Unfortunately the writer has done what most people do. She's started with the background, telling you when the accident happened and where and the road conditions at the time (as if you didn't know). She's quoted the relevant clause in the agreement. You're still anxiously scanning for the decision.

We can do better in our own writing.

Tell your reader the news in the first or second sentence, then explain it.

Many writers believe that the reader won't read on if they give away the decision at the beginning. It's not the way our minds work. Our readers can't take in anything until they know the key point - your decision or recommendation. They'll be scanning for it. Anything else just gets in the way.