A memo, short for memorandum, is a document sent from one person to another or a group of people within the same organization. It can be as simple as a note on your desk or posted on the bulletin board. It could also be sent as an email for all employees. They can include details of policy changes or corporate meetings. While memos can vary in purpose, they must follow a specific format and style since they often represent your organization. Learn how to write an effective memo for your Las Vegas business here.
1Step 1: Determine the Format
A typical memo contains two parts – the heading and the body. When typing them out, make sure that they are left-aligned. This format should become a standard for all the memo that will circulate in your organization. Ideally, the font type should be the same all throughout the document. If you prefer, you can also use your letterhead. Make sure that the memo is appropriately labeled. You can write “Memorandum” at the top of the page to make it clear to the recipient that it is a memo and not some other type of official document.
2Step 2: Create a Heading
Your heading should be like this:
Date: (indicate the complete day, month and year)
To: (the intended recipients of the memo) Make sure to indicate the complete names and job titles. If it is a general memo, include the name of the departments)
From: (include your name and position)
Subject: (state the reason for the memo)
Here is a sample heading:
Date: November 30, 2019
To: John Clark, Marketing Assistant
From: Jane Hofmann, Area Sales Manager
Subject: Annual Sales Promotion
When writing, make sure that you use the official names, and the subject must be as concise as possible since the details should be indicated in the body of your memo.
3Step 3: Write an Opening
Memos do not require salutations, such as what is commonly found in emails and other forms of business letters. You can directly state the topic. There is no need for an introduction. The first sentence must be a summary of the memo, or it could already expound the reason for the note.
Here is a sample opening:
“Based on our last audit, it shows that the annual sales for this year dropped by 20%, as such, it would be ideal to think of a more effective marketing strategy to realize our goals…”
At the get-go, the memo directly addresses the subject – the drop in sales and the solution – effective marketing strategies. It already tells the issue is of enormous importance that needs immediate attention. You can add three more sentences to discuss the problems in detail, including statistics and figures to strengthen the urgency.
4Step 4: Write the Body of the Memorandum
After the opening, you can dive right into the body of the memo. You can use this space to add more suggestions and recommendations on what could be done to address the issues and challenges. To make the memo easy to read, you can divide the subject matter into sections with subheadings. For instance, you can add how the dip in sales can affect the organization as a whole. You can also use bullet points to make it as concise as possible.
5Step 5: Insert a Conclusion
Close your memo by including a conclusion. Limit it to only two sentences by summarizing the issue and the possible solutions. It could also be a final call to action.
Some examples of useful conclusions are:
I look forward to the immediate resolution of this matter.
I am confident that these changes in the direction of our marketing could lead to an improvement in our sales.
We can discuss the issue further on our next meeting
Memos, in general, do not require a signature.
6Step 6: Proofread
Before sending out the memo, make sure to proofread them first. Look for any grammatical errors, misspellings, and typographical errors. While proofreading, you can also use this time to check if you have adequately covered everything you want to communicate.
Tips for Memo Writing
- Look at other memos written by industry experts. Some of them are available from news sites and press release sites.
- Keep it formal. Remember that your memo for your Las Vegas business can stand as a representation of your company. Do not use slang or informal language. It is also not advisable to use emotional language. Even if you need to call out an employee, make sure to use a detached tone while keeping politeness.
- Use bullet points. It can be beneficial if you need to discuss several issues. Bullets make it easier for the recipients to understand the message.
- Be concise. When proofreading, always check if you can reword the sentence to make it shorter without losing its message.
- Review. No matter how busy you are, make sure to proofread. You don’t’ want to send a wrong message to the recipients with tons of errors. It weakens the message.
- Start with a draft. If you’re unsure, you can always create a draft. List all the possible points you want to include in your memo.
- Know the purpose. Knowing the goal of the memo will help you craft an effective opening and body.
- Identify the recipients. Will the memo need to be department-wide? Will it be better to send it to executives first before reaching the employees.