Memorandum / Memo
I have already discussed military reports on many occasions here. Some examples have been shown to you as well. So today, I decided to take into other forms of writing you may be required to write during exams or your everyday work. If you are a staff officer, most probably you deal with memoranda as often as with reports. A Memorandum, also called a memo, is a frequent piece of writing used in business communication too. Memos are used mainly to communicate some important issues to subordinate staff. They can also be used to persuade somebody to take actions, give feedback on something or react to previous concerns, documents or issues discussed.
Memorandum – structure
A memo will be usually addressed to your co-workers or people who you had worked with before. Anyway, do not assume that they have all the contact data and provide it in a clear, visible form. It’s good to follow an effective format of any memo which contains subsequent sections called “to,” “from,” subject,” “date.” Those text markers along with other talking headings will make your memorandum orderly and reader-friendly.
Since memoranda (watch the plural form – it’s from Latin!) may be distributed freely, you can receive a document which is not relevant for you. Likewise, your memos (this time regular plural form!) may reach the addressees who are not interested in it at all. Therefore it is a common practice to make a clear purpose statement at the beginning of our memo. This statement will clearly define the purpose of the paper; it should be concise and direct.
Depending on the staff or organization you work for, it may be required to write different forms of paper, instead of memo. Other forms of writing, frequently used for the same purpose and similar in format are letters, reports, or briefing notes.
To help you visualize the proper outcome of your writing, you may look at the memo example I’m providing. This particular memo is a fictional one, I wrote for the purpose of my business communication classes. All personal details and links may resemble the actual ones, but do not regard them as valid addresses or contact data. There is nothing like the webinar I described in the file. Use the pdf file for reference only, considering the message layout and content as an example of nicely designed memo. You can download the file from the box below.