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20 photos; 75 figures; 20 tables, 8" x 10"



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Communicating for Results

A Canadian Student's Guide, Fourth Edition

Carolyn Meyer

Now in its fourth edition, Communicating for Results offers practical, classroom-tested instruction in the rhetorical techniques and persuasive strategies that students need to become effective writers and speakers. Supplemented with abundant group and individual activities to reinforce key principles and help students hone their skills, this invaluable text will teach students to communicate with confidence.

Readership : Communicating for Results targets students studying business communication, professional communication, and business English courses taught out of communication departments at both universities and colleges. These courses are generally found at the first- and second-year levels.


  • "Meyer's text is excellent. It sits comfortably on the top shelf among the best texts in the field."
    --Keith Johnson, University of the Fraser Valley

  • "I chose this textbook because it is informative and helpful, and it has lots of examples, exercises, case studies, discussion topics, and online activities."
    --Karen Riley, Southern Alberta Institute of Technology

  • "I have received positive feedback from students about this text, and I know they use it as a reference for their writing in other courses and their workplaces."
    --Brenda Lang, Mount Royal University

Note: Chapters include exercises, workshops, and discussion forums; writing improvement exercises; and online activities
Summary of Writing Samples
Summary of Case Studies
Highlights from the Fourth Edition
1. Issues and Trends in Professional Communication NEW
Communicating for Change - and a Stronger Bottom Line - in the New Economy
Communicating in the Current Workplace
Professionalism and Employee Engagement
- Why Professionalism Is Important
- Qualities, Characteristics, and Expectations
- Professional Boundaries and Behaviours
- Characteristics of High-Performing Teams
- Team Decision-Making Models
- Stages in Team Development
Ethical Communication
- Ethics and Legal Responsibilities of Business Communication
- Ethical Lapses and Why They Happen
Privacy in the Workplace
Case Study Exercises
2. Getting the Message Across
Communication Defined
Communication as a Field of Study
The Communication Process
- Elements of the Communication Process
- Barriers to Effective Communication
Communication Contexts
- Interpersonal Communication
- Small-Group Communication
- Organizational Communication
- Intercultural Communication
- Mass Communication
Non-Verbal Communication
- Components of Non-Verbal Communication
Communicating in Organizations
- Internal and External Communication
- Essential Skills for Workplace Communication
- Informal and Formal Channels
- The Flow of Information
Cross-Cultural Communication
- Communicating in a Global Economy
- Diversity in the Workplace
- Understanding Cultural Differences
- Intercultural Communication Defined
- High- and Low-Context Communication Styles
- Communicating Interculturally
Case Study Exercises
3. Getting Started: Planning, Writing, and Revising Business Messages
Writing in Context: Four Key Concepts
- Contextual Factors
- Genre and Register
- Discourse Communities
- Rhetorical Situations
Steps in the Writing Process
- The Importance of Message Planning
- Prewriting
- Organizing and Outlining
- Drafting
- Revising, Editing, and Proofreading
Collaborative Writing
- Collaborative Writing Tools
Critiquing Others' Writing
4. Business Style: Word Choice, Conciseness, and Tone
Word Choice
- Plain Style
- Word Choice Step 1: Use Familiar Words
- Word Choice Step 2: Use Fresh and Current Language
- Word Choice Step 3: Keep Language Specific, Precise, and Functional
- Word Choice Step 4: Practise Factual and Ethical Communication
Achieving Conciseness
- Tune in to Word Connotations
- Keep Your Style Conversational
- Select the Right Level of Formality: Personal and Impersonal Styles
- Be Positive
- Stress Reader Benefits and Relevance
- Be Polite
- Use Inclusive Language
- Write with Confidence
5. Business Style: Sentences and Paragraphs
Effective Sentences
- The Building Blocks of Complete Sentences: Phrases and Clauses
- Types of Sentences
- Improving Sentence Variety and Length
- Phrasing Basic Types of Questions
- Improving Sentence Clarity
- Writing with Consistency
- Writing Balanced Sentences: Parallel Structure
- Writing for Emphasis
- Applying Active and Passive Voice
- Eliminating Grammar Errors and Awkwardness
Effective Paragraphs
- Paragraph Length
- Topic Sentences
- Paragraph Development
- Paragraph Coherence
6. Memorandums, E-mail, and Routine Messages
- Memo Format
- Memo Organization
- Formatting Lists for Memos and E-mail
- Paper Memo vs. E-mail
- General E-mail Guidelines
- Reading and Processing Incoming Messages
- Formatting and Writing E-mail
- Replying to E-mail
- E-mail Style and Tone
- Routine Messages: Positive and Informative Memos and E-mail
- Routine Messages: Request Memos and E-mail
- Routine Messages: Reply Memos and E-mail
- Goodwill E-mail Messages
- Follow-Up Memos and E-mail
Instant Messaging (IM)
Case Study Exercises
7. Routine and Goodwill Messages
Direct Writing Plan
- Requests for Information or Action
- Order Requests
- Claim Letters
- Information Responses
- Personalized Form Letters
- Order Acknowledgements
- Messages Confirming Contracts and Arrangements
- Claims Adjustments
Goodwill Messages
- Thank-You Letters
- Letters of Congratulations
- Letters of Sympathy
Informative Letters
- Announcements
- Cover or Transmittal Letters
- Instructional Letters/Memos
Letter Formats
- Letter Balance and Placement
- Letter Styles and Layouts
- Letter Elements
- Addressing Envelopes
Case Study Exercises
8. Delivering Unfavourable News
Goals of Negative Messages
Tone in Bad News Messages
Organizing Bad News Messages
Direct Writing Plan for Bad News Messages
- Using the Direct Writing Plan
- Limitations of the Direct Approach
Indirect Writing Plan for Bad News Messages
- Using the Indirect Approach
- Bad News Buffers
- Explaining the Bad News
- Revealing the Bad News
- Goodwill Closing
- Indirect-Approach Message
- Limitations of the Indirect Strategy
- Apologies in Bad News Messages
Types of Bad News Messages
- Refusing Requests for Information, Actions, and Favours
- Refusing Claims
- Refusing Credit
- Turning Down Job Applicants
- Announcing Bad News to Employees
- Declining Invitations
Responding to Negative Messages on Social Media Platforms
Case Study Exercises
9. Persuasive Messages
Writing Persuasively
- Preparing to Write Persuasively
- Persuasive Appeals
- Indirect Writing Plan for Persuasive Messages
Types of Persuasive Messages
- Favour and Action Requests
- Persuasive Memos
- Claim Requests
- Collection Letters
Sales Messages
- Aiming to Make a Sale: Analyzing the Product and Audience
- Writing Plan for Sales Letters
- Sales Follow-Up
- Fundraising Messages
Persuasion through Social Media
Case Study Exercises
10. Communicating for Employment
Analyzing Your Career Goals and Qualifications
- Assessing Your Skills and Values
- Assessing Your Work Preferences and Personality
- Assessing Your Work History
Using Social Media to Attract and Impress Potential Employers
- Using LinkedIn and Twitter to Establish an Online Presence
Writing Persuasive Resumés
- How Employers Use Resumés
- Resumé Writing Style
- Parts of a Standard Resumé
- Resumé Length
- Resumé Styles and Layouts
- Preparing a Scannable Resumé
- Preparing an E-mail Resumé
- Creative or Non-Standard Resumés
Preparing a Persuasive Application Letter
- General Tips for Cover Letters
- Solicited Application Letters
- Unsolicited Application Letters
- E-mail Cover Letters
- Job Application Round-Up: Some Additional Tips
Career Portfolios and E-Portfolios
Job Interviews
- Before the Interview
- Behavioural Interview Questions and How to Prepare for Them
- At the Interview
- After the Interview
Follow-Up Employment Messages
- Follow-Up Letter
- Thank-You Letter
- Job-Offer Acknowledgement
- Job-Acceptance Letter
- Job-Refusal Letter
- Reference-Request Letter
11. Informal Reports
Introduction to Report Writing
Factors in Successful Reports
- Content
- Clarity
- Skimmability
Informal vs. Formal Reports
Distinguishing Features of Short Reports
- Purpose
- Frequency of Submission
- Common Categories
- Formats and Distribution
Direct and Indirect Approaches
- Direct Approach: Informational and Analytical Reports
- Indirect Approach: Analytical Reports
Writing Style for Short Reports
Steps in the Writing Process
- Planning
- Researching/Analyzing Data and Information
- Composing and Revising
Elements of Informal Reports
- Introductory Statement
- Findings
- Summary/Conclusions/Recommendations
Using Graphics and Visuals
- Tables
- Matrixes
- Pie Charts
- Bar Charts
- Picture Graphs
- Line Graphs
- Gantt Charts
- Flow Charts
- Organizational Charts
- Infographics and Data Visualizations
Commonly Used Short Reports: Informational and Analytical
- Informational Reports
- Analytical Reports
Case Study Exercises
12. Proposals and Formal Reports
- Elements of Informal Proposals
- Elements of Formal Proposals
- Writing Style for Proposals
- Sample Informal Proposal
- Common Mistakes in Writing Proposals
Researching and Collecting Data
Formal Reports
- Preparing to Write Formal Reports
- Writing Style for Formal Reports
- Creating a Work Plan
- Time Management
- Peer-Reviewing and Team Writing
Elements of Formal Reports
- Front Matter
- Body of the Report
- Back Matter
Case Study Exercises
13. Oral Communication
Oral Presentations
- Types of Oral Presentations
- Analyzing the Situation and Audience
- Structuring Presentations
- Developing a Three-Part Presentation
- Oral Presentation Outline
- Using Visual Aids
- Types of Presentation Aids
- Designing a PowerPoint Presentation
- Prezi
- PechaKucha Presentations
- Methods of Delivery
- Rehearsing a Presentation
- Delivering a Presentation
- Handling Questions
- Team-Based Presentations
- Special-Occasion Presentations
- Types of Meetings
- Preparing for a Meeting
- Conducting a Meeting
- Meeting Minutes
- Groupware-Supported Meetings
Communicating by Telephone
- Making Calls
- Receiving Calls
- Using Voicemail Productively
Dealing with the Media
Oral Communication and Presentation Improvement Exercises
14. Social Media and Mobile Communications
Embracing Social Media
Web 2.0 and the New Media Landscape
What Is Participatory Culture?
What Is Social Media?
Types of Social Media
- Blogs
- Micro-Blogs
- Podcasts
- Social Networking Sties
- Photo- and Video-Sharing Sites
User-Generated Content (UGC)
The Social Media Advantage
The Risks and Challenges of Social Media
Measuring Social Media Performance
Mobile Communication
- Designing and Writing Messages for Mobile Devices
- Writing Promotional Messages for Mobile Devices
- Optimizing Web Content for Mobile Devices
- Instant Messaging and Texting for Business
Business Usage: A Style and Mechanics Guide
Abbreviations and Acronyms
Usage-Related Internet Resources
Salutations and Complimentary Closes: A User's Guide
Standard Business Phrases and Their Plain-Language Alternatives
Grammar and Punctuation Handbook
Subject-Verb Agreement
Verb Tense Accuracy
Other Verb Problems
Using Passive-Voice Constructions
Avoiding Logically Mismatched Subjects and Verbs (Faulty Predication)
Using Parallel Phrasing for Items in a Series (Parallelism)
Making Comparisons Clear and Logical (Sentences with Than or As)
Using Pronouns with Precision
Correcting Modifier Mishaps
Internet Resources: Grammar, Style, Punctuation, and ESL Guides

Instructor's Manual:
For each chapter:
- Learning objectives
- Chapter summary
- Key concepts with examples
- Suggestions for discussion and debate
- 5 suggested additional reading, online sources, films, and videos
- 7-10 homework assignments
- Sample syllabi
PowerPoint Slides:
- 20-50 lecture slides for each chapter
Test Generator:
For each chapter:
- 40-60 multiple choice questions
- 20-25 true-or-false questions
- 20-35 short answer questions
- Answer key with page references
Case Studies with Answer Key:
- 4 NEW case studies to improve students' critical thinking and writing skills - 22 cases total
- General scenarios related to business communication
- Specialized situations related to travel and tourism and hospitality
- Accompanied by 5 activities and discussion questions
Complete Exercise Answer Key:
- Answers to all exercises in the text
Grammar Diagnostic Modules:
- Available for most Learning Management Systems
*Instructor Resources also include web links, CMS documentation guidelines, practice exams, and an annotated business plan (details in Student Resources section)
Student Study Guide:
For each chapter:
- Chapter summaries
- Learning objectives
- Key concepts with page references
- Online glossary of key terms
- 10 short answer review questions with answer key
Interactive Student Quizzes:
For each chapter:
- 25 multiple choice questions
- Practice midterm and final exam with answer key
Annotated Business Plan:
- A comprehensive introduction to business plans
- Sample of an annotated business proposal
- Sample transmittal letter
- Sample business plan
- Financial statements
- Relevant web links
Practice Exams:
- Short mid-term and final exams provide students
- Writing exercises
Web Links:
- Relevant links to blogging and microblogging, wikis, social media, text messaging
- Links to exercises related to technology in the workplace
- Additional web links organized by chapter
Verb Exercises:
- 36 exercises with answer key
Chicago Manual of Style Documentation Guidelines:
(APA and MLA covered in the text)
- An interactive site offering students additional practice in business communication beyond what is provided in the text and on the companion site
Student Study Guide:
Each chapter includes:
- Chapter overview
- Learning objectives
- Scenarios and Cases
- Additional activities
Documents Library:
- A library of model documents organized by document type
- Some documents are annotated to show correct and incorrect formats
- With immediate feedback on answers
- A searchable glossary of all the key terms defined in the text's margins
- Students can combine content from Dashboard with their notes to create their own study guide
E-Book (ISBN 9780199023059):
- Interactive e-book format NEW

Carolyn Meyer is an associate professor in the School of Professional Communication and the Masters of Professional Communication Program at Ryerson University. She is also Undergraduate Program Director in the School of Professional Communication. Outside Ryerson she has taught English and professional communication at the University of Toronto, Seneca College, George Brown College, and Mount Allison University. She has presented a range of courses and onsite workshops in professional communication at the University of Toronto's School of Continuing Studies and is the recipient of an Excellence in Teaching Award from the University of Toronto. She is also the vice president (Canada) of the Association for Business Communication.

Lean, Ethical Business Communication - Binod Sundararajan and Linda Macdonald
Successful Business Communication - Deborah Luchuk
Making Sense - Margot Northey and Joan McKibbin
The Concise Canadian Writer's Handbook - The late William E. Messenger, Jan de Bruyn, The late Judy Brown and Ramona Montagnes

Special Features

  • Written by a Canadian author for Canadian students, featuring Canadian content, usage, and approaches to business practice.
  • Extensively class-tested throughout the country, this is an effective resource for teaching students to become successful communicators.
  • A skills-based approach uses writing models, organizational plans, and reviewer-acclaimed exercises to simplify the writing process, banish writer's block, and ease fears about public speaking.
  • Annotated examples of effective communication - including formal / informal reports and proposals, e-mails, and good and bad news messages - show students how to apply principles to their own work.
  • Covers a wide range of communication approaches and current trends in research - including communication theory, global and intercultural communication, ethical communication, and collaborative communication - preparing students for today's workplace.
  • Emphasizes critical thinking - rather than relying on rigid formulas - to equip students with flexible skills they can apply to any situation.
  • Style and grammar guides - including the 2016 MLA update - help students write clearly and accurately.
  • Case studies on topics such as cultural diversity and corporate responsibility ensure students are exposed to real-world scenarios.
  • Helpful pedagogy throughout the text includes Quick Tips boxes, mid-chapter Flash Review boxes, and marginal definitions of key terms, while extensive end-of-chapter pedagogy includes workshops and discussion forums, writing improvement exercises, and case study exercises.
New to this Edition
  • A new chapter on teams and professionalism introduces students to the contemporary workplace and what it takes to be a professional, both as an individual and as part of a team. (Ch. 1)
  • Fully updated and expanded coverage of digital communication - including a full chapter on social media (Ch. 14) - discusses mobile communication and covers how businesses can use mobile and social media tools to promote products and services, engage customers, and keep on top of market trends.
  • Chapter Previews at the beginning of each chapter designed to give a concise overview of the coverage and goals of the chapter.
  • New and updated exercises, workshops, and debate forums throughout the text engage students in real-world business situations and require both critical thinking and effective teamwork.
  • Dynamic new full-colour design features 63 new photos and new tables and figures and showcases new coverage of infographics and data visualization.
  • Up-to-date coverage of MLA and APA style documentation guidelines demonstrate how students should cite sources.