This week I went back to one of my textbook requirements for college and decided look over it to see some of the content and its veracity. The book is entitled “Business Communication Essentials” by Bovee and Thill.
The book is very well written and complete with everything needed for communicating in the business world. However it was first written in 2004 (updated in 2010) before the revolutionizing effect of social media, blogging, etc. With the inventions of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Blogs, LinkedIn, etc comes newer ways of communication; something this book really didn’t have an opportunity to touch up on.
It does mention electronic media and blogs on pages 53, 99, and 123 but it’s not nearly as exhaustive as modern day books or even articles on the matter. The communication world has drastically changed.
Another point is that since this is a book on communication, it needs to demonstrate proper English rules for writing and speaking.
With regards to writing they propose a 3 Step Process.
1. Planning– which includes
a. Analyzation- recognizing what you are writing and to whom
b. Organization- ordering the information systematically
2. Writing– which includes
a. Adaptation- adapting to your audience and transferring correct information.
3. Completing– which includes
a. Revision- revising your work for clarity and readability
b. Distribution- getting your work out there
They end up applying this process to every chapter. Whether you are writing a business message, an electronic blog, positive message, negative message, persuasive messages, proposals, etc.
Also in order for your message to be effective you have to make them “practical, factual, concise and persuasive.” (pg. 5) If not then you will lose a lot of your audience. Further you have to have an “audience-centered approach” (pg. 8) which is a very wise and biblical model for success. Jesus even mentions it when speaking about “who will be the greatest?” His reply “the greatest among you shall be your servant.” (Matt 23:11) The greater number we serve and do so efficiently the greater our lot. Whether we are in business, communication or ministry it really doesn’t matter. The biblical model is to serve!
Continuing and going back to the topic of the blog. They define what the blog can be used for this way, “project management and team communication, company news, customer support, public relations and media relations, employee recruiting, policy and issue discussions, crisis communication, market research, brainstorming, and viral marketing.” (pg. 130) This was the highlight of the book for me. Having a blog for your business can be very helpful especially when following this guideline but the opportunity cost might be too high. To accomplish all these tasks you need at least one team dedicated to it and might not have the capital to do so.
Overall the book was pretty basic talking about the ins and outs of communication and at times unnecessary points would be discussed and butchered. Read this book if you must but spare your time and do the actual communication. Many times that is the best way to learn.
I give this book a 2.5/5