One aspect of communication that must be one of the most precious ability our society has lost in this generation is the responsibility of communicating in writing. Some people refer to writing as an art. May be that’s why people don’t like to write anymore: art is for artists. I call it a responsibility. That is for everyone. Yet writing is not popular today.More and more people are communicating important matters verbally when some of these should be done in writing. And I am not talking about the texting activities that permeate our world today. That’s for another article.I remember explaining a recurring problem to a manager who never listened seriously; he confirmed this by never coming up with corrective actions to the expressed problems.So, I communicated the problem in writing. I found out later that he thought my writing the memo was because I couldn’t express myself verbally! That wasn’t the case. I wanted the matter recorded in a tangible form and I wanted it received (listened to) without interruptions or misunderstandings. It did achieve the intended results! The problem was resolved.Verbally, we try to communicate an exciting moment in our life or a disappointment, but we get interrupted before we even finish sharing. Worse yet, we aren’t even given the chance to begin. In written form, the whole thought can be presented to get read and digested before a response can be given. Even if no one reads it, having written it brings a satisfying feeling of accomplishment, even a relief upon the soul. The written form can also be kept on file to encourage another generation…I read a story some time ago where a man discovered a drawer full of old letters one day which he had stored away. They were letters of encouragement from several people who had influenced his life. One of the writers was his father.He goes on to talk about his ability to communicate in writing as near the top of his many qualities. He has reread the letters often and counts them as priceless treasures he would not part with for anything.He shared that his own children were now old enough to read and appreciate a letter from their dad and how he was planning to carry on the family tradition writing letters of encouragement.Writing is communication. The same rules that we learn in communication apply here too, except that, the arena in which we stage the communication is made of paper. In a letter or memo, the Sender says what he/she means on the page; the Receiver receives it on the page also. The Receiver then, hopefully, writes his/her answer on another page that will be read (received) by the original Sender, and so on.In my business classes I used to provide at the Board of Education, “how to write letters” was one of the most common requests I received from the participants. I usually started off this section by asking the class to write a letter, without any instruction. We decide on a variety of scenarios from which each student chose to write about which might be a business letter or some other subject.It is amazing how many people just totally froze right there and then. They just didn’t want to do it; they didn’t know where to begin, how to go about it, what to say or how to say what. Invariably, most of the students handed in letters that were not laid out properly in their construction of salutation, paragraphs, body sentences, and closing. Ultimately, they always asked for more in-class practical assignments.Let’s look at some of the basics. First of all, like verbal communication, the simpler the better. Always know the person or audience you are addressing. Write as you would talk to that person. Have your purpose and objective clear in mind. Break it sown into 1. Salutation, 2. Opening paragraph. 3. Body sentences or paragraphs. 4. Closing. 5. Edit.Writing is one of the most efficient and complete way of communication. Many times I have written a letter or a memo specifically because I couldn’t get a particular point across verbally. Or I knew something would be lost in the verbal communication that could cost me a lot of time — or money. So I put it in writing.Someone called me the other day in response to a letter I had sent raising a couple of issues. He apologized for phoning, explaining that he is not good at writing and prefers to pick up the phone. I had another acquaintance from outside the country who even sent me a cassette and asked if I would use that instead of writing. No wonder, when he does write, even though he is the president of an educational organization, his letters are full of errors and whiteouts (he’s obviously running lean, as many of us do nowadays, and does not have a secretary!). The point is that people don’t like writing and prefer to communicate by cassette or phone.Nothing can substitute for the written form of communication. Unfortunately, with all the handy technology in this society, we have lost a great deal of the art of writing communication. Remember the old adage that practice makes perfect? When we no longer practice it, we no longer can do it. “Use it or lose it” as they say. Remember the multiplication tables of yesteryear and today’s calculator?The Internet is bringing some writing back into our lives — more and more people are using it and its technology is the written form! But, there are a lot of discussions going on right now on how this platform is also displaying a great lack of grammatical capability, especially in emails where mistakes are horrendously abundant! That’s often because people don’t take the time to edit. But, also, people have not learned the basics of writing.We have to take up our lost responsibility of writing in our communication.
Technomic, a major foodservice industry consultant, reports that in 2007, sales of the Leading 100 chain restaurants in the United Kingdom rose to £10.4 billion, and represented about 35 percent of all restaurant sales.What do these hospitality industry giants have in common? Technology. From point-of-sales (POS) and table-management software to wireless headsets, and SMS-enabled tracking systems, technology has become the key to success in the restaurant industry. No matter their size – whether a small, family-owned independent or a large dine-in chain – every restaurant will need to make use of enabling technologies to remain competitive in Britain’s growing restaurant market.Benefits of Restaurant Technology ClearThe leading chain restaurants have been taking the lead as early adopters of technological solutions to traditional industry related challenges, such as improving productivity, reducing labor costs, and maximizing sales. In particular, the fast-service chains have focused on meeting the ever-growing consumer demand for convenience and value by using technology to deliver better value and passing the savings on to customers. Fifty percent of quick-service operators plan to make even greater investments in technology over the period ahead.Most recently, technological applications are being used to help restaurateurs streamline ordering, reduce ticket times, shore up inventory control, and perfect kitchen organization, while improving accuracy at every stage of the order-to-table process.Tapping Into Your Target MarketIn this respect, many owners of takeaway restaurants are turning to the power of the Internet. For example, Domino’s Pizza has realized a 42 percent increase in online ordering over the past 12 months. The trend toward Web-enabled online ordering systems promises to help many restaurants rapidly expand their customer bases, while realizing significant savings in marketing costs. Approximately 30 million people, or roughly 57 percent of UK households, have access to the Internet.Other innovative restaurateurs are adopting systems that enable customer to place pick-up and delivery orders via text-messaging. At the fore of such systems are integrated solutions that combine the power of wireless services to track orders from receipt, through the entire preparation and delivery process to the customer’s front door.Why Your Restaurant Business N-E-E-D-S a POS System and SMS PrinterThe SMS printer is unique in that, unlike PCs for online ordering or fax machines, it may be placed right in the kitchen. All the unit needs is a power outlet, as it operates on the mobile phone network. Staff need not run to check for online or faxed orders every 5 minutes – they are printed instantly on the cooking line.POS technology is also having big impact across all sectors of the hospitality industry. Some early adopters have reported a pick-up in service speed of 20 to 30 percent. Moreover, these systems make the orders easier to read and transmit through the kitchen and preparation process, while leaving critical wait staff on the floor.These systems also eliminate mistakes and miscommunications, which also contribute to speed and service – perhaps the two most crucial commodities in the restaurant industry. Using POS and an SMS printer together, any establishment can organize and streamline in-house, takeaway and delivery order processing inexpensively and effortlessly.