The Business Letter Packet


Format: This packet includes FOUR different letters to FOUR different companies.  Depending on what type of letter you choose to write, your format will change.  Make sure to take excellent notes in class as to what should be in each letter and how each should be laid out.  Also, make use of materials on the web.  Sometimes (and you might as well learn this now) business writing comes down to merely tone and format.  Also, you will include a memo to me telling me why you did what you did in the letters you wrote (ie, a rhetorical analysis).

Goal of the Group: The first part of this assignment is the really fun part.  You will, with three or four of your classmates, come up with a business of some type.  The more outrageous, the more fun it will be for me to read and for your classmates to figure out why the heck they have to write you a letter.  You can have any service or good for sale; you neednít limit yourself to the stuff thatís already out there.  To really develop your company to the fullest extent, you should have these things: a specific good or service, a great name for your company, a developed sense of a mission statement, and some kind of specific spiel about what your company does so you can tell the other companies what you are all about.  

The meeting of the minds: The second part of the assignment is where you get together with representatives from the other businesses, hear their spiel, and figure out what kind of letter you are going to write to them.  Remember, you are representing your company, not just yourself.  One of the letters must express some kind of bad news, such as turning down an applicant for a job, informing the other company that an order cannot be filled, telling another company that you are no longer going to use their goods or services, etc.  These letters must be handled with a fair amount of finesse.  Another letter must be a sales letter to the other company.  You will have your choice as to what you want to convey in the other two letters, but remember, format and tone should be of paramount importance.

Other Resources: This assignment is basically you doing your thing based on what we have gone over in class.  Therefore, you may want to turn to a few other sources to make sure everything is going as planned.  Many business textbooks go over, in detail, what should be in all types of business correspondence.  There are several on Reserve in the Library.  I highly recommend Bovee and Thill, Business Communication Today.  You will have the opportunity to question me and your peers about this assignment though. 

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