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Verbal and Written Communication:

Verbal and Written Communication:. In Social Service Organizations. Styles of Written Communication Vary. In writing organization documents: . Know who your audience is (supervisor, staff members, clients, public, funders, politicians). Keep the message simple.

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Verbal and Written Communication:

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  1. Verbal and Written Communication: In Social Service Organizations

  2. Styles of Written Communication Vary

  3. In writing organization documents: • Know who your audience is (supervisor, staff members, clients, public, funders, politicians). • Keep the message simple. • Keep the length of the document short unless more detail is needed to provide information or persuade your audience. • Information in long documents should be summarized in the beginning of the document (executive summary). • Statistical information should be presented in a way that can easily be understood by the intended audience (for example, charts and graphs).

  4. Use the following formatting techniques • Short memo format if feasible • Subheadings • “Bullet points” or outline format • Use subheadings instead of lengthy transition statements • Keep reports and other documents for the public short • Add more detail if the audience are key decision-makers or people with expertise in a specific field. • Technical language is o.k. in a research or policy report; simple language should be used for media releases or to persuade the public. • Reports should contain introductory paragraphs that contain information about contents as well as a conclusion section. • Keep memos for decision-makers down to one or two pages. Make sure that the recipient knows that a decision is required.

  5. For example: • Memorandum • To: Student Activities Office • From: Donna Hardina, Advisor, Campus Peace • Date: 9/26/2005 • Re: Californians for Pesticide Reform Event on October 22, 2005 • This memo is intended to supplement our application to reserve UC 200 on October 22, 2005. Campus Peace has agreed to sponsor a meeting of Californians for Pesticide Reform on campus on Saturday, October 22, 2005. We have also reserved a number of rooms in USU for this event. Our previous understanding of the event had been that CPR would be conducting a conference. • I spoke to Andrea Wilson, a staff member at Californians for Pesticide Reform (CPR), on September 16. She indicated that the event will not be a conference. Rather it is their Annual Meeting which is open to the public. The issue of pesticide reform will be discussed. No one will be charged admission. Rather participants will be asked to make voluntary contributions to CPR. • CPR has held its previous annual meetings on college campuses with the sponsorship of university student groups. • Please feel free to contact me at 278-2307 or donnah if additional information is needed.

  6. Persuasive Documents: • Clearly state the organization’s values and objectives. • Present just enough facts to influence the intended audience. • Summarize main points • Indicate the type of decision to be made and any additional steps that should be taken to address the issue.

  7. Social service organizations also use reports to gain support: • Brochures • Flyers/Posters • Annual Reports • Fundraising Letters

  8. Short Persuasive Documents Should Be: • Culturally Competent. • Deliver the message in a positive way that is meaningful to people. (For example, rather than “Welfare Rights Coalition” use “Coalition for Family Stability.” • Uses Symbols and Images. • Message Can be Remembered.

  9. For example, web pages are used to persuade the public to contact public officials: National Council of La Raza: http://www.nclr.org/content/news/detail/33963/

  10. Verbal Communication • Can be formal (intended for a work related purpose) • Informal – communication among staff members; gossip, etc. • Information can be explicitly communicated in writing or explicitly through verbal and physical cues. (For example, organizational “dress codes,” expectations about attendance.

  11. Some organizations have policies about appropriate verbal communications: • Sexual and Racial harassment policies. • Prohibiting personal phone calls. • Rules (called by-laws) for conducting board meetings. • Policies that mandate civil or collegial behavior among staff • Policies that mandate how clients should be treated.

  12. Human Relations and Empowerment Approaches to Management recognize • That most workplaces contain groups or cliques. • That most workplaces have both formal or informal leaders. • That management decisions can be rational or political – persuading workers to behave may involve a political process. Informal leaders and cliques may give the director support or oppose him or her. • The director knows that there are key people that he/she must persaude.

  13. Some types of persuasive communication outside include clear rules of behavior. • By-laws for nonprofit boards. • Rules for how teams and committees should function. • Making public presentations at pubic meetings. • The legislative or rule-making process to develop new laws. • Political campaigns. • Debates.

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