My mission, as a corporate writer, college instructor and workshop leader, is to help people write in an interesting way that is clear, concise and free of jargon. I work with professionals who want their emails, memos and reports to be professional, persuasive, and still have their personal voice; adult students who want to move away from academic writing; and new Canadians on developing their business writing skills.
Writing instructor with a passion for helping you take pride in your words.
I give people confidence in their writing voice
Do you struggle to understand what your colleagues have written? Are their sentences too long and filled with unnecessary detail? Does the writer have trouble getting to the point?
One of the most important skills to succeed in business today is writing. And yet, a majority of business leaders say that what they read is frequently ineffective because it’s too long, poorly organized, filled with jargon, and unclear.
Whether it’s in the workplace or the classroom, people want their communication to be simpler than ever.
In my writing workshops, I give participants a few basic tools on how to choose better words and craft stronger sentences. Then I guide them on how to use their own voice to express their message clearly.
The best part is, what they learn from me one day, they can put into practice immediately.
Believe it or not, writing – and learning about writing – can be fun. The goal is to stand out from the pack!
I teach people how to:
Apply the principles of concise writing to reports, memos, social media posts and creative briefs.
Write clear and direct content while maintaining a friendly voice.
Develop content for employee newsletters or memorandum that is relevant and interesting
Communicate data and technical subject matter in plain language to people from different backgrounds
Learn the basics of grammar and punctuation
Master the writing skills needed to advance in their careers
I am the principal of Write to Know Communications. While studying psychology and sociology at Queen’s I imagined I would become a psychologist because I love asking questions and exploring people’s emotional and mental health. It didn’t work out that way but I did find a way to keep asking questions by becoming a journalist, working in radio and on medical trade magazines.
I progressed to healthcare public relations and found my niche in corporate communications, writing newsletters and websites, and doing leadership and employee communications for such organizations as Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, Hewlett Packard, Honeywell and HIROC (Healthcare Insurance Reciprocal of Canada).
Inspired by the idea of adult learning, I pursued my Masters in Education at OISE and am an Accredited Business Communicator through IABC.
One of my most satisfying career shifts has been into teaching and coaching other people how to be good writers. I know that writing is a struggle and adhere strongly to the dictum that good writing comes with practice (getting comfortable with that ugly first draft) and that the more you put your personal voice into your writing, the better it becomes.
Everything I’ve learned as a corporate writer comes into play in my classes and workshops. I want to give students the courage and the confidence to take risks and be interesting. It’s my mission to help you discover the joy and the power that comes from being proud of your craft.
Are you ready? You won’t regret it!
Choose the workshop that's right for your team
How deeply you and your team want to delve into improving your business writing skills is up to you. I’ve created a number of offerings and they can be mixed and matched to suit the needs of your team or your class. At their core, each one focusses on the fundamentals of strong writing and practical exercises. Grammar and punctuation are always part of it, and every program is designed so the lessons can be put into practice right away. All my programs are offered in-person or online.
In this writing ‘refresher’ workshop I focus on some fundamental ways you can improve your writing and then give some practical exercises.
1 Day Workshop
We still cover the principles of good writing, and go a little deeper in this one-day workshop.
2 Day workshop
In this two-day intensive course, there is more focus on practical exercises and feedback on memorandum, emails and complex business documents.
There is no better way to learn than having fun.
I’ve recently completed the course in Business Writing from the University of Toronto. I want to thank the team and the amazing instructor, Ellen Gardner, for the unique learning experience.
Despite the challenges of the current global situation, we managed to create a close-knit group, which helped us go through the fine details of business writing in a relaxed and engaging way.
I really recommend it. Whether you’re a native English speaker or not, never underestimate the importance of good writing skills in the workplace.
~ Adriano Daniele, HR Leader
Who I've worked with
More about Ellen
In 2018, I created and am still the host of a podcast for HIROC (Healthcare Insurance Reciprocal of Canada) called Healthcare Change Makers. In 2020, the podcast was recognized with an IABC Gold Quill Award of Merit.
I coach people who are in career transition, helping them craft their career story and online profiles.
I am an avid photographer and at one time did wedding photography.
I am active in Holocaust education as a volunteer with Holocaust Education Week (UJA), supporting survivors and capturing their stories.
I love to dance and am a certified Nia White Belt.