Almost every job involves some kind of writing. So, when everyone can write, why does it matter whether or not you write well? I’ll let Natalie Canavor, the author of several business writing books, reply to that when she says, “You are what you write these days.”

Think about it: In an age when so much communication is done via written words like emails and chat messages, not during face-to-face or even phone meetings, your writing is your brand, the way you work and communicate.

Your writing is your everything.

But there are other reasons why your writing skills matter at work. When you write well at work, you also demonstrate that you are more trustworthy, capable and productive too. Here’s why…


One, good writing skills mean more trust.

  • When you write well, you’re more trusted in the work environment, both by your boss and by your coworkers. If you are dealing with people outside of the organization such as customers or vendors, you are more trusted by them as well when you write well. This is especially true for sales people, account managers and people in customer service.
  • Part of this comes from showing respect to your reader. When you dash off a message quickly and carelessly, you’re essentially telling the other person your time is worth more than their time. Do you want a customer or, worse yet, your boss assuming that’s your attitude? Of course not. Strong writing skills will help you write respectfully and be seen as trustworthy.


Two, good writers are considered more capable.

  • Employees with strong writing skills are perceived to be more intelligent, and so capable of more responsibility at work.
  • In part because good writing = good thinking. People who write well usually do so because they are thinking through what they’re saying. When you write well, you demonstrate your ability to think clearly too. And employers appreciate (and need) employees who can think clearly. Write well, and you’ll be seen as capable.


Three, good writers get more done and help others to be more productive too.

  • Stronger writers are more productive because their message is clearly understood the first time. They don’t have to send multiple emails or explain—or rewrite—a document.
  • And the better you are at writing, the faster you can write well, saving you time.
  • Finally, when you can communicate something in a direct, logical, concise manner, your reader can absorb and understand your message faster, saving them

As an employee, strong writing skills help you stand out from your peers and colleagues. You are seen as detail-oriented, trustworthy, capable and productive. And when your manager is looking for someone to take on a special project, or there’s an opportunity to move up, it’s the employee with the strong writing skills who will probably get picked.

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Trust photo by Andres Ayrton:

Sharon Ernst is a retired freelance copywriter now on a mission to improve the business and marketing writing skills of today’s workforce with her blog, newsletter and online classes.