Bad Writing Sucks (Money From Your Business)


Bad Writing Sucks (Money From Your Business)


How many asset managers or advisors make their money off of writing? Zero. And it seems like many of them spend zero resources developing good writing too. But as it turns out, that lack of investment can cost businesses in the long run.

A recent study by the College Board evaluated the role that writing plays in 120 major American corporations. Among its findings:

  • Two-thirds of salaried employees in large American companies have some writing responsibility
  • In part due to the prevalence of email and other electronic forms of communication, up to 70% of companies reported a consistent need for quality writing skills in key areas of their business
  • Training for salaried employees with writing deficiencies has become a common trend and may be costing American businesses approximately $3 billion per year.

These costs don’t include the impact of poor writing on sales and client retention. While it’s hard to evaluate sales lost to bad writing, client surveys in the asset management world regularly indicate that good communication around client questions or concerns is a meaningful factor in building and retaining client trust.

Got It! Now What?

It’s hard to fault companies for seeking to hire people with writing skills, or to use training opportunities to improve those skills. But asset management companies in particular may be better off separating strategic decision making from the writing needed to communicate those strategies, and seek writing talent from outside their walls. Why?

  • In many cases, the most experienced and talented writers are found in the outsource marketplace.
  • It’s hard enough to find excellent analysts, investment managers, client relationship managers, or sales and marketing candidates. Adding “good writer” to your screening criteria could leave you with no one to hire.
  • Writing is an umbrella that covers a lot of specialties; those specialties are often only needed sporadically. Why pay for a generic skillset everyday when you can pay for a specialized skill only when it is needed?

A company like Purcell Communications can help connect you to the exact writer skillset you need and – importantly – an objective set of criteria for evaluating the overall effectiveness and quality of the work that is produced.