You’re smart and driven. You’ve got an idea and you’re starting a business. You’re an entrepreneur. But what would your elementary school English teacher think about your grammar?
Grammar matters. It establishes your credibility and makes your communications more effective. That’s why it’s always important to follow the basic rules of grammar—in emails, on your website and in correspondence—no matter how busy you are.
Here’s a list of 10 grammar rules you should never take for granted:
Me vs. I
Figure this one out by taking out the other people in the sentence and seeing whether “I” or “Me” makes more sense. For example, “Jordan, Cole and I” or “Jordan, Cole and me”. Take out the other names and complete the sentence.
There, Their, They’re
“Their” is possessive, use it when someone owns something. “There” refers to a place. “They’re” is the contraction of “they are”.
To, Too, Two
“To” means you’re going somewhere. “Too” is an addition to the original clause or thought. “Two” is a number.
Fewer vs. Less
Generally, always use “Fewer” when numbers are involved. If it can’t be counted, use “Less”.
Principal vs. Principle
A “Principal” is someone who runs a school or organization. A “Principle” is a rule to live by.
It’s vs. Its
“It’s” is the contraction of “it is”. “Its” on the other hand gains its power by being possessive.
Then vs. Than
“Then” refers to time. “Than” should be used when you’re comparing two things.
Your vs. You’re
You own “Your” words—it’s possessive. You are now aware that “You’re” is the contraction of “you are”.
More than vs. Over
“More than” should be used when you’re dealing with numbers. “Over” should be used when you’re dealing with special relationships (e.g. “More than five airplanes flew over the city”).
Capital vs. Capitol
You’re trying to raise “Capital” for your company, which is to say, money. But if you want to lobby government officials, you’ll drive to the “Capital” city and visit them in the “Capitol”, or the building in which they make the laws.
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