When I was young, I remembered my mom keep drilling about the tone of my voice when I speak. I’m sure all of us have gotten the phrases “watch your tone” from our parents or any elderly really if we ever speak up. At first, I was so confused to why people would be so fixed about my tone, but over time it made realize how important it is to know how to project the right tone. Even when I was little I developed an awareness for my tone because I know it will be useful, for instance when I want something from my parents, I would ask them in a polite and enthusiastic tone. Tone is significant, because it has the power to convey one’s attitude toward a subject and it is important to realize that tone in a way is subjective.
Tone and Mood
Now in the business world, we need to be even more aware of our tone in the way we communicate, whether if it is talking to a colleague or in our writing. The purpose of tone in writing is to portray the writer’s attitude toward the reader and the subject of the message. The overall tone of a written message affects the reader just as one’s tone of voice affects the listener in everyday exchanges. The right tone can set you up to be successful, and give you a good reputation. Which is why we should avoid being “tone deaf” in our writing, because the way we communicate our argument will affect the audience’s response. In business writing, moods and feelings need to be appropriate, because it can be easily translated in our writing. Having a confident/positive tone in our writing will make our writing become more passionate and well liked for the audience, an example of confident tone when replying to an email to accept a job opportunity would be: ” Thank you very much for the job offer, and I’ll be very glad to accept this wonderful opportunity” .We might not see the correlation between mood and tone to be a strong one, but according to this article, mood is the attitude of the author toward the subject, and tone is the attitude of the author toward the audience. We can set the appropriate mood for the different subject that we are writing.
The Audience and Form of Writing
Now the audience are the people that we are writing the message for, it can simply be for our friends, colleagues, or boss. The important idea is to always consider out audience, because from there we can determine if we are going to write in a formal or informal way. When we are in a work place, we will most likely going to write a formal documents. When we are writing in the work place, it is essential to write formally. However, you do not want to be too formal, because you still want your writing to have your own voice in it. You want your writing to have a natural flow, instead of being stiffed or stilted. By saying this, I don’t mean, we can write in a way we would when we are texting our friends. We still need to set our tone in a confident and courteous form, because the readers are more likely to agree and accept the message you are conveying. The purpose of the message should be clear to audience, there should be no confusion.
There are different forms of writing such as, emails, memos, business letters, reports, and so on. I am going to use emails as an example. For starter, we should always greet them by their status (Dr., Mrs., Professor) or the name they prefer. When we are writing emails to our professors, colleagues, and bosses, we need to make sure our tone is consistent throughout the email. We should use professional and appropriate language, and make the writing as simple and to the point as possible. There is no need to drown them in information, we should be able to cut ourselves ruthlessly when we know we are being redundant.
Language and Formatting
One of the way we can do to set a good tone in our writing is by being formal, and step away from the everyday words that we use when we are talking to our friends. We definitely do not want to use the hype acronyms, such as idc,fosho, kk, and idk. Those kind of words would most likely turn people off, it shows lack of credibility and depth in content. While we are writing professional emails and memos to our colleagues and boss, we should avoid using jargon and slang words, because this will cause a confusion to our readers .It is important to have the appropriate word choice. We want to use words that will compel and convince people of what we are trying to address or achieve. We want our audience to be able to understand the message, and not get confused or offended, this blog addresses the importance of using formal words, and how to arrange our sentence so that we can conduct a strong and confidence tone in our paper. As I mentioned above, we don’t want to be too formal. We want to write in an effective way, according to this article, there is no need to write “As of this date” when we can say “From” or “At the present time” when “Now” will suffice it.
We also need to write courteously, maintaining a positive mood and tone through out our writing is important. We want to stay away from words such as “never” or “always”, because the two words often give bad connotation to the readers. Maintaining positivity in our writing could make a difference to our audience. Our tone should not be negative even when the subject we are trying to address to the audience is unpleasant. We want to maintain sounding professional, respectful and regretful, such as looking forward too, thank you for all your help, and I’m so sorry for the inconvenience that this has caused you . Lastly, we should be proofread our writing and change it if needed, because it will show that we care if our writing have no misspelling, awkward sentence, and so forth.
By now, we know how big of a portion tone is in our writing. Our tone should be courteous and professional at all times, and it should convey confidence, strength, and cleverness. But always remember to be yourself, don’t try too hard to the point where it’s not you anymore. Understanding how to craft the right tone to the different kind of audiences would be beneficial for the future.