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I hope you find my writing and business tips and observations useful. My business and blog are dedicated to helping businesses communicate clearly and reach their potential. Read, subscribe to my newsletter, enjoy! Tash

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experience

Your industry writer

As a professional business writer, I sometimes am asked if I have experience writing content for a specific industry.

While I could give a yes/no answer to each person, depending on the industry they are asking about, the reality is that being an experienced writer is more relevant that my industry knowledge.

different industries - engineer, dentist, dressmaker, accountant.

I am not an engineer or dentist, a seamstress or accountant, yet these are some of the industries I have successfully written for

Don’t believe me? Well think about these points:

  1. expertise in multiple fields (e.g. writing and science or superannuation) is harder to find – and should be unnecessary as the client is the subject expert and the writer is just making it read well
  2. someone outside of the industry can provide more clarity about how customers will perceive information (For example, people in superannuation and insurance talk about ‘benefits’ in a way that the general population doesn’t, so as a writer I change ‘benefits’ to ‘payments’ for clarity)
  3. a writer’s job is to communicate a message clearly and effectively
  4. good writers know how to research, and to read information to find the relevant points to put into a message
  5. a lot of business content is actually generic and doesn’t need a lot of industry knowledge – website home pages, ads, media releases, profiles and brochures are about the business and marketing so a lot of technical information isn’t used
  6. experienced writers are used to meeting guidelines and choosing words carefully so can manage even in tightly regulated industries – just tell the writer  any rules and then use your usual due diligence checks. Good writers can use words well but avoid misleading people so may meet the regulations quite easily anyway

In comparison, we need some trees removed at home. We want a professional tree lopper who will do the job safely and appropriately – I don’t care if they’ve chopped down the same type of tree before. Likewise, I don’t insist on a hairdresser who only does long, wavy hair or a graphic designer who has experience with other writers’ websites.

If you need writing help, you will find it much harder to find a suitable professional if you limit it to those with industry experience. Concentrate on finding a good writer and providing them with the relevant facts for a project (or at least reliable sources of information).

Do you disagree?

 

* Images collated from Microsoft Clipart

Allowing learning…

I read a blog post called Tilda Virtual Services is moving – again! and I was impressed enough to write an answering post, as well as leaving Kylie a comment!

The background is that Kylie started a VA business from home a few years ago. As things were going so well, she moved into an office earlier this year – a big step for her and an exciting one! After nearly 6 months, Kylie has decided to close the office and operate from home again.

 Kylie took a risk and left her comfort zone by moving into an office. In doing so, she was able to change her work habits (no more midnight work) and define work and family better.

What I found inspiring about this is that Kylie has realised she is better suited to work from her home office, and has set up her business so that doing so is still feasible. Instead of just accepting the office as what she ‘should’ do as a successful business or worrying that moving out after 6 months is a ‘failure’, Kylie is doing what is right for her.

So often people let themselves get stuck into a rut because they think it is expected of them or don’t want to admit a previous decision was wrong. But why not admit a decision wasn’t right, but was worth trying?

As Kylie said “If I didn’t, I would have wondered if moving out was the right thing to do and I wouldn’t have developed my good habits so I don’t regret it at all. Life is a series of learning experiences and this was another one of those.”

Taking a risk doesn’t mean closing off options – it just means giving something new a go and then deciding what to do with the new knowledge and skills you gain from the experience.

Have you ever taken a risk and then decided to go back to how something used to be?