It’s not what you say but how you say it that counts. And these days, there are a lot of ways to say it poorly. The proliferation of electronic communications, including e-mail, text and instant messaging, and even the type and print simplicity of everyday word processing, has numbed us to the deliberative practice of capturing thoughts in writing. Cutting corners to save time and effort at the keyboard also means we’ve grown accustomed to sloppy spelling and grammar—but that doesn’t mean such errors are forgivable or without consequence.
Taking the time to write well, and that means reviewing all outbound business correspondence, is essential to avoiding silly mistakes that can harm your reputation. An awareness of common errors, such as homophone confusion ("your" vs. "you’re") and apostrophe usage can help avoid embarrassing mistakes. Good grammar still makes a difference, even in this age of modern communications.
Mike Spinney Principal SixWeight Townsend, Mass.