Three Critical "Cs" for Good Writing


clarity in writingChecking over any written document for three essential elements will certainly improve its effectiveness. Make a checklist, tape it to your monitor, keep it inside your notebook, frame it for your wall — do what you need to do to make sure your writing reflects these attributes.

Clarity. We refer here to clarity of purpose. You’re writing for a reason, right? Make sure the reader captures the essence of your document. Reread the introduction — is the purpose of the document clear? Does the reader know what to expect?

Consistency. Be consistent in all aspects: voice, tense, formatting. For example, active voice is especially important when writing SOPs so the reader understands what actions s/he should take. Throwing in passive voice here or there introduces ambiguity. “Disengage the motor” clearly names the reader to complete that action; “The motor should be disengaged” does not. 

Conciseness. Provide only the information the reader needs right now — you don’t want to distract the reader from your main point. And use economy in your word choice, selecting simpler words over complex ones and omitting unnecessary words or phrases.

Clarity, consistency, and conciseness in written documents enhance readability and effectiveness. We can help you with all aspects of constructing high-quality, productive documents. Contact Hurley Write for online courses, or onsite trainings.