All proposals I receive from prospective clients contain shockingly poor grammar and are often riddled with comma and punctuation errors.  

These are proposals from successful businesses, generating millions of dollars a year in revenue, yet no one on their payrolls knows plural from possessive, the difference between that or which, or how commas are used.

You would think after so many years that it would fail to shock me.  You would be wrong.

It’s fingernails on a chalkboard each time.

BP has told me that “business writing” is different and that the emphasis is on speed of communication rather than perfect grammar.  My argument to him is always that clarity is essential and by failing to adequately proof-read, the writer looks disrespectful at best and ignorant at worst.

I have always made “The Elements of Style” required reading for my staff — yeah, they love me.  The rules are slightly outdated, but it’s essential to know them.