TO: First Name Last Name, Title/Position

FROM: First Name Last Name, Title/Position

DATE: Date Sent

SUBJECT: Purpose of Memo Clearly Stated

The introductory paragraph, or opening, should identify the subject, its relevance to your readers, and often the main point of the message. Intro paragraphs also help when the reader is not familiar with the subject or the background of the problem. Furthermore, longer or complex subjects benefit most from more thorough introductions.

WARNING: do not state the main point first when (1) readers are likely to be highly skeptical or (2) key readers, such as managers or clients, may disagree with your position. In those cases, a more persuasive tactic is to state the problem or issue first, then present the specific points supporting your final recommendation. Also, use the opening to establish an appropriate tone that achieves your purpose. Audience influences tone.


Headings divide material into manageable segments; call attention to main topics; and signal a shift in a topic.

Left aligned, this paragraph is not spaced from the Heading. This paragraph also provides details and facts that support and explain the Heading in which it is attached. Please be specific and develop your thoughts to avoid confusion or misinterpretation.


The information under each Heading is also related, so the more information you include the more general the heading can become, but be please be careful. If you have enough related information or ideas for two or three different headings, then use two or three different headings.

As you group related ideas, consider the following questions: Is the time sequence among items important? If so, organize them chronologically. Do you need to compare the features of one item with those of one or more other items? Organize accordingly. Should you organize items by decreasing order of importance or by increasing order of importance? Assemble, arrange, add, delete, and move your ideas until you feel you have the best or most persuasive organization.

Close your document with a sentence or short paragraph that does one of the following (you can use lists and bullets in memos, too):

· Builds positive relationships with readers

· Encourages colleagues and employees (to act or collaborate or accept idea/proposal)

· Solicits feedback or the continuation of a discussion

· Lets recipients know what you will do or what you expect of them and, if necessary, when an assignment is due.

Make sure to have at least two lines on the second page to justify having an additional page. If necessary, adjust your margins to fit one outstanding line onto the first page.

For additional pages, please provide the following information in the Header in one of two ways:

Enter the recipient’s name (or a shortened version of the Subject title if there is more than one recipient), page number, and date you send the memo.

Format 1: Left Aligned in the Header starting on second page (not on first page)

Full Name or Shortened Subject Line

Page (#)


Format 2: Across the header

Name or Shortened Subject 2 Date

NOTE: I could not attain this Header information because I used Word 2003 and it did not cooperate. To achieve this header in newer versions of Word, please click Header-Footer and click/check the “Different First Page” box.