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Technical Writing in the Corporate World Understanding, Developing, and Editing Technical Documents by Ph.D. Norbert Elliot, Ph.D. Herman A. Estrin

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2.1.1 The Memo

In field interviews technicians often report that they spend little time composing memos. Although memos are a major part of their writing, the technicians’ memos are composed in one draft, checked only for spelling and grammar, and processed for distribution.

Managers, however, tell a different story. They emphasize the importance of well-constructed memos. Some managers’ memos on one hand constitute a daily record of an organization’s operations and form a permanent record of the status of projects. Since managers frequently take someone’s memo and redistribute it to other audiences, in few situations will a writer be sure that a memo will be read only by its intended audience. Practically, this means that the memo must be written ...

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