Red lined

Red-pencil-writinQ:  I was aghast when a colleague delayed sending a critical client memo to correct four grammatical errors.   The content was accurate.  He highlighted the changes in RED.  What should I do?

A:  I can appreciate why the actions of your colleague have you seeing red because in business getting a document out the door is sometimes more important than being 100% grammatically correct.  That said, every organization has unwritten rules that define a professional, client-ready document.   Expectations vary widely—is the document casual or formal? For an internal or external audience? A presentation or a legal brief?

To appreciate your colleague’s actions, I recommend that you begin by asking:

  • What is your relationship with this colleague?  Friendly or competitive?
  • Is your colleague new to the team and lacking the experience to comment on the content of the document?  If yes, what conversation can you have so that you and your colleagues are on the same page?

Finally, was the overall, quality of the document improved by correcting the grammatical errors?  If yes, you may want to take advantage of your colleague’s editing skills.    Four eyes are almost always better than two.

This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *