The following are brief descriptions of the types of writing courses Make Your Point offers. These modules can be refined and offered in various sequences, depending on client needs:
The keys to effective writing
This one-day course explains the principles of plain English. It aims to ensure participants understand the importance of accuracy, brevity and clarity and the right tone in their written communication. They are encouraged to think about the audience and purpose of their writing and learn about how best to structure their work to meet their aims. The course includes discussion of specific types of communication such as email, letters and internal office communications. Participants work individually and in groups, which illustrates to them the value of collaborative writing in the workplace. On-line feedback after the course is also possible.
‘This course made me think!’
‘I liked working on real-life examples and being given pointers and advice on what to improve on.’
Asked if the participant would recommend the program, they answered: ‘Yes. To my supervisor because they use long words in their email.’
‘Fundamental for any professional’
Formulating and communicating policy
This one-day course covers the essential elements of clear writing required in policy development. It explores the nature of the policy making process and gives participants the tools to present an effective argument to senior officials and ministers. To help ensure maximum impact, the course is tailored to suit the working patterns of particular agencies. Follow-up coaching with a group working on specific project is a good way to reinforce the learnings from the course.
‘Very useful for junior diplomats’
‘Francesca was excellent. I think I learned more about how different documents are used for foreign policy than in my whole time in the DFAT [Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade]. Also appreciate the wealth of knowledge and anecdotes from the DFAT experience.’
Writing for the media/Speechwriting
This course is aimed at those who are likely to have direct dealings with the media through interviews/responding to media enquiries or indirect dealings through the drafting of media releases or articles. It explains how the media works and what it wants from public agencies, non-government organisations or businesses. It shows participants how to have effective interaction with the media, how to draft media releases and articles and how to participate in interviews.
We also offer a module on speech-writing, in which we set out the elements that make a good speech, explain the idea of the ‘speech circle’, and discuss delivery techniques.