Entering a completely unknown world can be unnerving.  When a business major, specifically Accounting, is thrown into a brainstorming machine of writing and English majors, the air can become static by the amount of creativity slowly draining from the writers by the accountant.

As an accounting major myself, I did not see the connection between writing and business.  However, it is important to remember that all business is conducted through writing, and not all writing is creative story writing.  Creative ideas can be formed for any subject or field of study.

Business writing needs to be creative to attract a future client, but also be concise and very factual.  Who likes to read boring statistics? Answer: no one.  Not even accountants.  Therefore, I would argue it is even harder to engage an audience in a business proposal or year end analysis than to engage a reader in a novel or other creative writing.

Therefore, the quest for business writers is to make statistics and facts the most interesting thing that has happened since the world-wide use of QuickBooks.  Journalists and creative writers use their Moleskin notebooks as a shield from the harsh reality of the business world.  Business writers can be just as quick witted and creative as the novelists, but they might be lacking in their presentation.  How many PowerPoint presentations can be done in the “Depth” template — you know, the one that is solid navy blue with a white–maybe gray–stripe through the title slide.  Our classy words may spin deals, but our graphics are making the first years get their laptops out to take notes.  No, first year, you are not back in Micro Economics.

Here, I will say that this is where the business majors could use the writing majors’ help.  The journalists and English majors know that their words will deeply touch the souls of possibly 1 out of every 10 people who is not their mother, so they know how to make it flashy and engaging. This is where the connection exists between the business majors and the English majors.  Now, the goal is just to keep the writers from feeling like they have to touch the lives of everyone in the world by the written word, and to keep from suffocating the accountants in the flaming pit of dramatic brainstorming…

Join the discussion 3 Comments

  • Emily Power says:

    It’s interesting to look at the different values of different professions like you point out. Business writing values brevity and concision while creative writing often values playing with the different possibilities of language through literary devices such as alliteration or metaphor. Most interesting is that despite these seemingly juxtaposed values, both parties utilize writing and could not do what they do without it! Writing helps all people get all kinds of work done. We use writing to inform, sell, and entertain!

  • Kayla D. says:

    I appreciate how you identify that both disciplines could learn things about writing from one another. I can definitely empathize with your struggle since I am a science-based individual who tends to have problems writing in the ‘traditional’ sense. I think it would be interesting to further delve into the specific lessons that we should take away from each discipline!

  • Andrew D. says:

    Generally, I think it’s great, and an important of a Writing Center, to incorporate a variety of majors and backgrounds to serve writers of all kind. Specifically to this post, I thought it was funny in mentioning the overuse of some PowerPoint slides — we’ve all seen them in our class presentations. I also agree with the idea that Statistics can be made more interesting…often, it’s hard to conceptualize and apply numbers when they’re just in the back drop. Great post!