High Meaning, Low Real Estate


Did you know that if we use words high in meaning, we'll need fewer of them? We can actually say more, and provide more meaning for our reader, in less space or real estate, by choosing high-value words.

How does this work? Well, it's all about getting up close and personal with the words we choose.

Here's an example. How much extra meaning or knowledge do you get out of Sentence B below?

  • Sentence A: They worked on the project.

  • Sentence B: They collaborated on the project.

To me, Sentence B says more - but in the same amount of space as Sentence A. With Sentence B, I learn additional information: "They" came from different areas of expertise, they brought their knowledge to a joint project, more than one department was likely involved. If I used Sentence A, I'd have to add a second sentence to clarify all that.

Check out the example in the graphic. That's how we want to think about our writing, by asking questions about our words, getting curious, looking at whether we're really conveying meaning or just using filler words. I hope you will find this helpful in your next week of workplace writing!

The key? Look at your words. Ask the question: "Does this actually add meaning?" Just think of the real estate you'll save - on the page or on the screen!

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