I’ve had this quick tip sitting around for a while in my drafts, and figured I really need to publish more of these things, so here it is.
You have something to say, and also an audience to consider or worries about how that message might be perceived.
Tip: Two Lists – Content & Perception
When I do this stuff I make myself 2 checklists:
- things I want to say and
- how I want to be perceived
Then, you write the points on the first list in whatever raw, first-draft way you want, and iterate on them until they all meet the requirements for the 2nd list. Check it per sentence and per paragraph.
The two lists helps you function as your own editor and switch mindsets to make sure your points are saying what you want them to. This is especially effective for angry e-mails (which luckily I haven’t had to write for some time). It also makes a decent quick framework if you need someone else to review the writing.