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Business Writing: Commonly Misused Words
We use writing every day in business. Does your writing make you look more professional or less professional?
There are some words that are commonly used interchangeably, when in fact they have different meanings. Here are a few of the words that are frequently used incorrectly.
You're and Your:
The word "you're" is a contraction for "you are".
The word "your" is used to imply possession or ownership.
Sale and Sell:
The word "sale" and "sell" are not interchangeable. Sell is a verb, used to show what the noun (person, place, or thing) in the sentence is doing. “I am going to sell this.”
Sale is most commonly used as a noun, such as in the sentence "There is a big sale at the mall."
Correct use of both words: “I am going to sell this shirt at a garage sale.”
Too and Two:
The word “too” usually means “also”.
Prefixes Such As "Un", "In", and "Non":
Each word has only one correct prefix.
A Lot and Alot:
The words "a lot" are correct. "Alot" is incorrect and there is never an occasion in which it should be used.
Good and Well:
Good is an adjective. Adjectives are used to describe nouns.
Well is an adverb. An adverb is used to describe a verb.
You wouldn’t wear a dirty shirt to a business meeting, so don’t let your writing make you look bad, either.
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