Does your technical writing have an accent?

Maybe you don’t hear your accent, but others do. When you read their documents, does the accent come through?

Download: Technical Writing Templates

We all judge people by how they speak. It’s easy.

When I was a kid, I had a strong regional accent. I grew up near the countryside and thought that was the way people spoke. Well, we all did.

When I went to college, a teacher told us to polish our accents if we wanted to get ahead. He was right.

Name one CEO or world figure with a strong regional accent? It gets ironed out along the way.

Today, I have hardly any accent.

Years of trying to smooth out the rough edges and blend in have diluted what was there. Most think I’m American, French (dunno!) or Russian (they go by the name, I guess).

Seth Godin asks if your writing has an accent?

“Of course it can. Not just grammar errors, but sentence length, exclamation marks and your vocabulary all tag you. And the fonts, colors, pictures and layouts you choose are part of your accent as well.”

So, here’s my question.

When you review other people’s documents, what can you tell about them? Does the way they ‘speak’ influence the decisions you make based on their material?

Flip it around.

When they read your documents, what do they think?