Editing Skills for Leaders

Do you have a team member who struggles with writing any document – it might jump around, includes irrelevant information, has insufficient information, has too many words or is grammatically incorrect? You are faced with editing the document before it leaves your department and most often, you end up re-writing it to meet a looming deadline. You track the changes hoping the team member will absorb your techniques only to find when he/she submits another document later, it presents the same issues.
This course will help you tackle the editing challenge while coaching the team member. It presents techniques to enhance the writing and ways to convey that to the team member to ensure skill acquisition. It provides a refresher component for contemporary effective business writing techniques along with how to manage the team member’s development.

Tailored Editing Skills training program – virtual or in-house delivery – Melbourne – Sydney – Brisbane – Adelaide – Perth – Hobart – Darwin – Canberra – all regional areas – Asia – and anywhere else

Duration

  • Two hours face-to-face or
  • One 2-hour live online workshop.

Designed for you

This program is suited for any leader who is required to edit a team member’s written work.

Outcomes

Learn how to:

  • Conduct two sweeps for editing – content and wordsmithing
  • Encourage the team member to profile and think like the reader to identify appropriate content
  • Prepare and explain a diagrammatic tool to ensure relevant content and structure
  • Compose tight sentences which highlight the main points for the reader
  • Eliminate 20 -30 percent of wasted words in the document
  • Use formatting techniques to assist readability
  • Include key words to control the tone
  • Provide constructive and positive feedback to a team member
  • Manage the team member to meet deadlines and corrections.

Editing training delivered in-house at your premises or in an online virtual classroom

We deliver our training programs either through:

All our facilitators are certified in COVID-19 Infection Prevention and Control Training by the Australian Department of Health. Therefore, you can rest assured we will deliver safe face-to-face workshops in collaboration with you.

Editing Skills group training – using your documents

Where relevant, we will use your organisation’s internal formats, templates and style guide.

We will also use anonymised examples of participants’ writing in the workshop. With this material the facilitator:

  • Assesses their writing ability
  • Gains a thorough understanding of the written work they prepare
  • Extracts examples for use as training material within the program.

Ask us how we apply this to your organisation.

Approach

We’ll discuss your needs and create an editing skills course that perfectly suits the audience and the documents they edit. We’ll adjust this highly interactive workshop to the level of the participants. Participants will use their own examples to immediately apply their new editing skills. Ask us how we can tailor an editing training program to suit your needs:

  • call 1300 655 098
  • start a chat at the bottom of our page
  • send us a message.

Related business writing posts

Business Writing training testimonials

Free eCoaching: ask an ICML trainer – get advice on editing other people’s writing

Do you have any questions about how to edit your team’s documents you’d like to ask? Do it here. One of our trainers will answer on the page and we’ll let you know by email when we post the response. We aim to come back to you within a few business days. If you need more urgent advice, try our chat at the bottom of the page.

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2 Comments
  • Hanan
    Posted at 17:29h, 30 June Reply

    What is the best way to give feedback to improve team members’ writing?

    • Brinda Bajaj ICML
      Posted at 14:17h, 02 July Reply

      Hi Hanan

      Thanks for your question. There are a few things to keep in mind when giving feedback to writers of documents you need to review or edit. The points below will be explored in more detail in our group training sessions on editing other people’s work.

      Ten top techniques to create great writers
      Your editing process is powerful in maintaining the standards of the written work flowing form your department. However, you should aim to create great writers rather than editing their work to your standard.

      1. Set clear expectations
      Help your writers by providing them with clear style, grammar, and formatting expectations, along with your expectations of meeting deadlines and self- correction.
      If you do this, every document will be much closer to the way you want it—without having to revise it 30 times. Do everyone on your team a favour and let them know what is expected of them. It will make life easier for you and for them.

      2. Ask for a mind map or plan before writing
      Ask your team member to prepare a mind map or spidergram or similar before they start writing. This ensures:
      • all the correct content is included (6 words)
      • irrelevant content is excluded (4 words)
      • rework time is minimised. (5 words)

      3. Set and enforce submission deadlines
      Nobody likes deadlines because they mean time is up—for editing, revising, and rewriting. If everyone meets their writing deadlines consistently, the whole team produces more, better, and faster.
      When the writer misses a deadline, the editor has less time and can ‘accept’ substandard work to meet the overall deadline. The credibility of the section is then compromised.
      Save yourself the headache by strictly enforcing deadlines. Put the agreed due dates in your diary and follow up. Get a reputation for enforcing deadlines. You might even consider sending a reminder three days before the agreed deadline. This shows you are serious.

      4. Don’t make the changes
      Don’t spend time making the revisions. Instead, make comments in the margin relating to any breaches of principles and send it back to the writer for a second draft.
      Ask the writer to re-write it, rather than you make changes. This holds the writer accountable and makes it less likely the same mistake will happen again.
      Writers become overly reliant on the editor to make the changes. However, if they know they will be required to make the changes, they will be more careful with their own editing process. Don’t forget to make positive comments as well.

      5. Express feedback verbally
      It’s tempting to mark up the document and send it back. But avoid this. Deliver it in person if possible, so that the team member knows it is important. You can also elaborate on why the correction is important. Focus firstly on the good points and then points to be corrected. Set a time frame by which the document needs to be resubmitted.

      6. Do two passes on the document
      Avoid providing all the feedback at the one time. Deliver it in two passes:
      1) Do a first pass for:
      a. relevant content
      b. structure.
      2) Then do the next pass for:
      a. wordsmithing
      b. typos
      After each pass, ask the writer to correct the items you have flagged.
      This will be time consuming initially but you will see improvements in the incoming work very quickly. You will need to explain this process to the writer so that they know what to expect and can allow time to meet deadlines.

      7. Set times frames for resubmission
      Always agree a time when the updated work is to be resubmitted. If it is not submitted by the agreed time, express disappointment and agree the new deadline.

      8. Coach the principles
      Be prepared to coach the team member in the techniques of clear and succinct writing throughout the editing process. For example, if the text is in an illogical sequence, teach the mind map.
      Alternatively, ensure they attend a writing skills program and reinforce the techniques they learned in your editing explanations.

      9. Have good examples on hand
      Maintain your own file of good examples and completed documents to show to your team members. Adults learn easily from examples.

      10. Have good examples on hand
      Apply the same editing standards each time you edit work. Allowing something to slip through this time demonstrates ‘flexibility’ and standards will immediately start to slip and you are back at step one.

      I trust these tips will help you in not only giving good feedback, Hanan, but also in creating good writers in your team.
      If you have colleagues who also need to edit work, why not ask us for a proposal to deliver this Editing for Leaders training course at your offices? In just a couple of hours we will give you the skills and the confidence to give solid feedback and coaching to your employees. You will thereby build strong writing capability within your organisation.
      Ask us for a quote today!