Some professionals will say that ones ability to write or speak with eloquence is the most important skill to develop. I would like to add a third skill which is equally, if not more, important into the equation: proofreading. Without the ability to effectively proofread, your works, be they written speeches or books, will be ravished with typographical errors that make reading them difficult. Whether I’m reading a novel to myself for pleasure, a speech to a crowd to inspire, or an article to assist with professional development, errors throw off my train of thought, making the point being made less effective. And yes, we all make mistakes. But we should all go back and read through pieces that we write two or three times. And then, after I publish on here, I still ask for one someone to proof for me. When I’m at work and finish a letter, I finish it, read it on the screen once, then on paper twice with a red pen in hand, and then I print out a final copy and read it just to make sure it’s ready to go out.
Once something is out there, especially on paper, though you can retract a statement, there’s no retracting the impact that it made. So do your best to get it right the first time. This is one situation in which it’s ok to not seem human.
Make professional development a priority.