Month: December 2017

Finding the Story Part 1: The Appeal of Stories

Storytelling in business is fashionable and popular, including in financial services.

There is a large body of academic literature on the topic, specialist consultancies, training courses, websites and blogs all drawing our attention to the power of narrative.

Business storytelling has great appeal to experts, service providers and customers alike. Using stories helps make business more interesting. It helps us engage with subject matter that otherwise might be technical and dull.

Stories are a refreshing alternative to the jargonized consulting-speak that is widespread in business writing, especially financial services.

Stories are compelling. People love them. This blog explains why, without going into detail about the psychology, science or typology of storytelling, which is a whole topic on its own.

Style Corner: The Comma Splice

Welcome to my new, shorter blog, Style Corner.

As the name suggests it will focus mainly on style and usage and not on grammar; based on the idea that most contentious topics in business writing, and writing more generally, are not actually to do with grammar.

There are of course rules of grammar in English but not as many as people think; and to native English speakers and writers they are just that: native, innate, internal. To non-native English speakers and writers they have to be learned, yes, but the playing field is more level than you might imagine.

Native English speakers, especially those of a certain age and educational cohort, are just as likely as non-native speakers to be confused about what is ‘correct’ or not; and about whether the ‘correctness’ of something is a grammatical matter or a matter of usage and style.

Style Corner is intended to clarify some of the uncertainty.

Exceptionally, though, the first topic is actually about a grammatical matter: the comma splice.