15 February, 2017

In terms of [sic] a clear speaking alert

‘In terms of the meeting, we made a number of important decisions.’ What’s wrong with this sentence? It’s active, complete, and properly punctuated…What could it be? ‘In terms of’ is one of the worst stock phrases in formal business writing. Its […]
7 February, 2017

The Magic of Trump

Donald Trump amazed us all and became President of the United States. You may, like us, be a little baffled by this but, when we delved into his communication and presentation style a bit deeper, we began to understand why […]
3 February, 2017

When negotiations go wrong

Photograph credit: The Mirror The phone call between US President Donald Trump and Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull offers us a unique and contemporary insight into negotiations. Was this a negotiation? What is a negotiation? Why do we negotiate? When […]
25 January, 2017

Elegant and clear legal writing: A miracle!

Well, colour us impressed! The Supreme Court of the United Kingdom released a press summary yesterday and by George, we got it! The writer presented complex information in Plain English without losing elegance in the writing style. Here at Ethos […]
25 January, 2017

Why you need a plain English editor

An article published on The Mandarin last month perfectly summarised why we think editing documents into plain English is so important. They write, “A plain English edit starts by analysing the audience for your document and evaluating how well the […]
23 January, 2017

The power of the pause

When giving a presentation, never underestimate the power of the pause. Silence is difficult, but it is invaluable in speech. It gives you time to collect your thoughts, and it gives your audience time to absorb what you’ve just said—and […]
18 January, 2017

What type of editing does your document need?

There are three levels of editing: substantive editing, copy editing and proofreading. A comprehensive edit is a type of editing that normally includes substantive and copy editing, whereas proofreading usually happens once the document is ready for publishing. The substantive […]
16 January, 2017

Catching up with Tony Turner

Expert presenter, presentation skills coach and facilitator, Tony Turner, went all around the country in 2016 helping professionals be more confident and persuasive. In our presentation workshops participants learn to be effective presenters who are able to convince and persuade. […]
11 January, 2017

Cliché of the day

In our world, and especially the world of government, clichés abound. A handy backup in case inspiration fails to strike, overused phrases and metaphors are kept under every politician’s tongue. Here is our hated cliché of the moment: Unpack BAD: ‘Let’s […]
15 December, 2016

Policy skills tip

How is good public policy made? Policy is created all the time, but good policy is becoming increasingly rare. The first step to producing and implementing good policy is to understand what it is. There are three types of policy: […]
12 December, 2016

Writing effective emails

As a professional you write emails all the time. They are the most commonly written documents. But they exist halfway between a conversation and a formal letter. So what’s good practice for writing effective emails? Why am I writing this? […]
4 November, 2016

Style tip: writing the date

Get the date right. And if you want to get it right, just follow Commonwealth style – not US conventions, not formats from Uzbekistan. In Australia, the date follows a specific formula: date month year: 9 December 2010 This is […]
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