Monthly Archives: October 2015

Beginning of Class Writing: Importance of So-Called “Soft Skills”

For today’s class, you read Stuart Leung, “Here Are the Soft Skills Most Important to Your Business,”, and Joyce E. A. Russell, “Business Capital,”

In both articles, the writers are talking about the importance of so-called “soft skills.” In your summary memo for today’s beginning of class writing assignment, I would like you to begin by defining what soft skills are and what these two articles say are important about them for today’s job seekers. Post your summary memo as a comment added to this blog post.

Beginning of Class Writing: Product Research and Citations

For today’s class, I asked you to read Louise Balle, “How to Do Product Research,”, and the in-text citations and works cited sections of the Purdue OWL MLA website,

During the first ten minutes of class, write a memo and post it as a comment on this blog entry. It should respond to these questions:

  • What is product research?
  • Why do product research?
  • Why document your research sources?
  • What research projects have you done before in other classes (please briefly describe the topic and length)?

Beginning of Class Reading: Mission Statements

During the first ten minutes of class, write a summary memo based on today’s readings: Don Hofstrand, “Creating a Mission Statement, Setting Goals and Developing Strategies,”; Wikipedia, Mindspring [read all, but focus on CV&B],; and Coca-Cola Company, “Mission, Vision, Values,” Focus on the long form mission statement reading, but also briefly discuss the Mindspring CV&B and Coca-Cola mission statement. Post your memo as a comment to this blog post.

Beginning of Class Writing on Meetings and Meeting Minutes

For today’s class, I asked you to read these two documents about holding meetings and creating meeting minutes:

Eric Matson, “The Seven Sins of Deadly Meetings, “

University of Minnesota, Office of Human Resources, “Meeting Minutes,”

Use the first ten minutes of class to write a summary memo of these two documents. I would suggest two paragraphs–one for each reading. Make sure you identify in your memo what it is you are writing about in each respective paragraph. Of course, follow the memo format for your response. After you have written and saved your memo, you may copy-and-paste it into the comment box of this blog post and submit.

Beginning of Class Writing: “Writing Collaboratively”

For today’s class, you read Markel, “Writing Collaboratively” chapter, Chapter-4-Writing-Collaboratively-Markel-Technical-Communication-10th-edition. This is an important chapter for you to read, because it introduces strategies and behaviors that are needed for workplace collaboration. Most of the work that you will be doing in the workplace will involve collaboration in one form or another, and to one extent or another. If you can demonstrate how you work well with others, and more importantly, how you create good work cooperatively with others, you will have many more higher-end opportunities come your way than otherwise. That’s why we devote such a large part of the next phase of our class to collaboration. You each need to learn how to create the required documents, but you can do this while learning how to work well with others toward a common team-oriented goal. So, my first question to you today is, did you do the reading and what did you learn? If you didn’t do the reading, why not? Next, what kinds of team work have you done in the past in school or the workplace? Finally, what challenges do you see to working collaboratively with others? Write a memo in response to these questions during the first ten minutes of class and post it as a comment to this blog post in memo format.

Project One: Organization and Introduction Memo

During class this week, I discussed how to organize your Project One Job Application Portfolio and how to write your portfolio’s introductory memo. Here’s a summary of those discussions for those students who were not in class.

Place all of your documents in a pocket folder with fasteners (pockets are not required, but most of these kinds of folders have folders). Three hold punch all of your documents and secure them inside the folder. On the cover of the folder, title it:

Job Application Portfolio


Your Name

Organization (from assignment sheet)

  1. Introductory Memo
  2. Job Ad (print out or copy as seen online or in print)
  3. Job Ad Research Memo (should also include a copy of the job ad)
  4. Profile Print Out
  5. Letter of Application
  6. Experience-Based Resume
  7. Skills-Based Resume
  8. Letter of Resignation

Introductory Memo

This document should follow a memo format. Write an informative subject and use the due date for the memo’s date.

The first paragraph should introduce you as a job seeker in a specific career field with a specific degree. Use proper and exact names for job titles and degree.

The second paragraph should be a roadmap for your portfolio. It should say something to the effect that this portfolio contains these documents: 1, 2, 3, etc. Use the organization above to write this list.

Finally, you will write one paragraph discussing each of the subsequent documents in your portfolio. Each paragraph should be in the neighborhood of 6-10 lines. Each paragraph should answer these questions: what is the document being discussed (use the list above), what is its purpose and argument, who is its audience(s), and how does it attempt to accomplish its purpose/persuade others of its argument?

Beginning of Class Writing: Bureau of Labor Statistics, “Occupational Outlook to 2020.”

During the first ten minutes of class, write your summary memo of today’s reading: “Occupational Outlook to 2020,” (read introduction on page 1-2, read section related to your major in Occupational Groups beginning on page 88, and read pages 99-108). Focus on the general information about the job market outlook presented in this report and its specific prognostications about your future career. Post your response memo as a comment on this blog post.

Beginning of Class Writing: UWGB, “Interviewing Like a Professional”

During the first ten minutes of class, write a summary memo of the “Interviewing Like a Professional” document prepared by the Career Services office of the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay. Of course, its content overlaps the previous reading, but it adds important insights. In addition to your summary, you can respond to this question, too: Considering some of the interview questions, how might you respond to some of them?