Writing for Business: Carol Andrus

Communications Groups

Corrections or additions?

These articles were summarized

prepared for the January 3,

2001 edition of U.S. 1 Newspaper. All rights reserved.

Selling Yourself: Ellen Silverman

The most natural sale is to someone you know,"

says Ellen Silverman, of Ellen Silverman Advertising Inc.


Still, even the best sales people flinch when it comes to knowing

how far to go when leveraging contacts, says Silverman (U.S. 1, August


"Creating relationships is not only crucial to the success of

your business (the sale), but easier and less stressful than selling

to strangers," says Silverman. "Knowing some simple techniques

of networking opens pathways to success."

Networking can be done on an individual (one-on-one) basis or through

a group, but what it is not is joining lots of organizations

and going to lots of meetings. "Networking is more than showing

up at a function, smiling, sitting with your friends, eating dinner

(breakfast or lunch), and going home." This is what a lot of


do; and then they wonder why nothing is happening, she says.

What networking is: "People meeting people and profiting from

the connection."

Results don’t just happen, Silverman reports. "Networking takes

time, patience, practice, attitude, and a plan.

Take any opportunity . "On vacation I was talking to

man who was a manufacturer in Bayonne. I asked him who did his


and gave him my card. I’m not promoting myself — but you never

know. Always have a card in your pocket," says Silverman

Don’t always choose the bigger events for networking.

Silverman says her networking skills fail to flourish at galas such

as the recent Small Business Association’s awards luncheon. "Some

people can walk into a room of a thousand people and do well, but

I like a more intimate group. At a luncheon, people are hanging out

with people they know and you are at one table. If you start talking

business they give you these quirky looks. But if you go to a chamber

breakfast, people are there to make connections, and they are open

to talking about business."

Be choosy when taking cards . "You don’t want


cards in the room. Go home with up to a dozen cards.

Move on swiftly . Chance encounters, she warns, are not

opportunities to do any real business. "Even at a business


if I am going with networking in mind, I am not going to sit for an

hour and do a needs assessment. You get a little bit of information

and move on to the next person. Give them a card and leave it at


Make careful notes . "I lose cards instantly,"

says Silverman, and she has devised a built-in protection system


loss. "Either that night or the next morning make a note on the

back as to where you met the person and what the conversation was

about. Then when you call you can say `How was the graduation?

Or, you are trying to hire somebody? Let me put it in my network.’

You have to make those notes before you forget and then immediately

get it into wherever you store it — your Rolodex, your computer,

or your Palm Pilot. It opens the door to building a relationship."

Be rigorous about follow up . "Call the following week

and say it was nice meeting you and pick up from there. You have an

opening to pursue it in a non-social situation, and now it is no


a cold call." Chat for a bit and then say, "by the way, I

was serious, I would like to know more about your needs."

Be patient . "I went to one organization for 2 1/2

years before I got my first bit of business. It takes a positive


and it takes a plan."

Be ready to do business with people who do business with

you. "I am looking for people to sell me and looking for people

I can sell to," she says. "Once I made a list of all the


I had met that year, and there were 80 of them, with a 50/50 split

between buyers and sellers." She might be able to hire, for


graphic designers, writers, or printers, and she buys office supplies,

insurance, and other services. "My insurance agent, accountant,

and investment broker are all people I have met at NJAWBO. I have

also done marketing for these people. It’s been a two-way street."

"You never know where your new client/customer is going

to come from and who is going to refer you or open a door for


says Silverman. "The more people who know you and know about you,

the more people there are in your network to create business for you

and/or do business with you. Networking is an investment in your


that can pay a big dividend."

Top Of Page
Writing for Business: Carol Andrus

In today’s information-overloaded culture, good business

etiquette means getting to the point fast, says Carol Andrus,

whose business, Write On Target (212-724-1958, CLAndrus@aol.com),

teaches executive assistants how to communicate effectively (U.S. 1,

April 19). "Malcolm

Forbes said `I read over 10,000 business documents in a year —

you can’t make it simple enough for me,’" Andrus points out.


inundated with information — nobody has enough time and people

want direct conversation, a real voice."

The next time you write a memo or prepare a business document, keep

these points in mind, says Andrus:

Write the way you speak. "The `enclosed please find’

days are just gone," she says. "Use words like you, I, and

we." Don’t use the passive voice. "Why say `We had a


with John’ when you could just say `We discussed the project with


Keep memos under one page . "Tell people in the first

few lines of your memo what it’s about," says Andrus, "and

make the last line your action line — tell them what you


Adds Andrus: "Any paragraph that’s longer than seven lines we

re-read. Average business writing is on a 10th grade level."

Also emphasize important comments with bold, underlines, capital


and bullet points.

Delete what your reader does not need to know . "You

still see a lot of bedtime stories written in memos," says Andrus

"For example, someone writes `Gene Gold called me yesterday from

our Denver office to tell me,’ — does your reader really need to

know that? Otherwise, it’s just `Gene Gold told me that…’ or `We

have a big problem in our Denver Distribution Center.’"

Even in E-mail, don’t ask your reader to scroll down page after page.

Have a "can do" attitude . "The top blip on

all the employment charts is attitude," says Andrus. "Do you

have an `I can do it’ attitude for the new technology and all the

things in the workplace?" In most cases, secretaries will say no,

and it’s time to change that, says Andrus.

Top Of Page
Communications Groups

American Association for Public Opinion Research , 271

Wall Street, Princeton 08540. Paul Braun, president. 609-279-1600;

fax, 609-279-1318. E-mail: paulbraun@braunresearch.com. Meetings at

Princeton University’s Prospect House

Art Directors Club of New Jersey , 75 Kearny Avenue, Kearny

07032. 201-997-1212; fax, 201-998-7839. E-mail: assn_hqt@msn.com.

Home page: www.adcnj.org.

Business Marketing Association/ NJ , 114 Mayfield Avenue,

Edison 08837. Ken Messner, president. 732-940-0545; fax, 732-297-6475.

Home page: www.bma-nj.org. Meetings on second Tuesdays, $25,

part of the International Business Marketing Association, with 100


Electronic Commerce Network of New Jersey and New Media


NJ , c/o Trien Rosenberg, Box 1982, Morristown 07962. Jay Trien,

president. 973-267-4200; fax, 973-984-9634. E-mail: clara@vanj.com.

Home page: www.nmanj.com. Statewide network organization dealing

with electronic commerce and Internet business issues and


IRMA – International Recording Media Association , 182

Nassau Street, Suite 204, Princeton 08542. Charles Van Horn,


609-279-1700; fax, 609-279-1999.

Liberty Bell Speakers Association , Box 579, Moorestown

08057. Frank Felsberg. 856-234-0530; fax, 856-727-9504. Network of

professional speakers, meetings at the Union League of Philadelphia

Moving Image Professionals (ITVA Princeton) , c/o Nth


Media, 126 Parker Road South, Plainsboro 08536. Dennis Nobile,


’00-01. 609-716-1737; fax, 609-716-1742. E-mail:


Home page: www.movingimage.org. Professional organization for

anyone involved with video and multimedia production, including talent

and vendors, meetings third Wednesdays, at 6:30 p.m. at area


January to November.

New Jersey Ad Club , 75 Kearny Avenue, Box 6, Kearny 07032.

Donna Lukenbill, president. 201-998-5133; fax, 201-998-7839. E-mail:

njadclub@usa.net. Home page: www.njadclub.org. For ad agencies,

corporate advertising and marketing departments, suppliers, media,

$150 annual dues, also New Jersey Internet Marketing Association.

New Jersey Broadcasters Association , 348 Applegarth Road,

Monroe 08831. Philip H. Roberts, executive director, ’98-’00.


fax, 609-860-0110. E-mail: njba@njba.com. Home page:


New Jersey CAMA , Box 7212, Princeton 08543. Ed Cenkner,

president 2001. 609-799-4900; fax, 609-799-7032. Home page:


Statewide non-profit alliance of members of NJ’s communications,


and marketing industry

New Jersey Press Association , 840 Bear Tavern Road, Suite

305, West Trenton 08628. John O’Brien, executive director.


fax, 609-406-0300. E-mail: njpress@njpa.org. Home page:


Trade association for daily and weekly newspapers.

New Media Association of New Jersey , c/o Trien Rosenberg,

Box 1982, Morristown 07962. Jay W. Trien, president. 973-267-4200;

fax, 973-984-9634. E-mail: clara@vanj.com. Home page:


Statewide network of web design and Internet professionals or anyone

interested in new media, extension 193.

Professional Writers Alliance , 10 Tally Road, Hamilton

08619. Robin Levinson, president. 609-584-9330; fax, 609-584-9330.

E-mail: levinson@ix.netcom.com. Home page:


Experienced nonfiction freelancers — authors, journalists,


and public relations specialists, with directory "Pens for


— nonprofit.

Public Relations Society of America/NJ , 5 Cedar Lane,

Morristown 07960. Patricia Lurker, administrator. 973-987-6184; fax,


Society of Competitive Intelligence Professionals , 33

Quail Run, Long Valley 07853. Mitchell Audritsh, state chapter


908-979-9222; fax, 908-953-2765. E-mail: audritsh@rcn.com.


For those engaged in evaluating competitors and competitive


advocate for high ethical standards.

Society for Professional Journalists , 15 Somerset Street,

Somerville 08876. Ron Miskoff, president ’99-00. 732-225-4555; fax,

732-417-1014. E-mail: spj@njspj.com. Home page: www.njspj.com.

Meetings from September to June for discussion of news, professional


Toastmasters International, Princeton Club , 38 Terhune

Road, Princeton 08540. Michael Suber, membership contact person.


fax. E-mail: mpsuber@juno.com. Home page:


Organization dedicated to helping people develop speaking, listening,

and leadership skills: meetings first and third Thursdays, 7:30 PM,

Princeton Methodist Church, rear entrance.

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