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The language in our proposal responses

Back in the 1700s, one man set out to change the English language. His name was Noah Webster. The same gentleman who spearheaded the creation of the Webster's English dictionary. Webster was frustrated with the inconsistency in British English's pronunciation and spelling. Hence, he started changing the language. As a result, we now have hundreds of minor spelling differences between British and American English.

It absolutely annoys me that I have to keep changing the language in my proposals. We have clients from across the world, and so, the language I use in my proposals keeps switching between UK English and US English. So how must we handle this problem as proposal writers?

What's worse? We don't have much time for response turn-around. While I do get some RFPs with turn-around time of upto a month, most times, I am not as lucky. I only get 3-4 days. The ideal thing to do would be to have two sets of templates with spelling and grammar corrected for each.

But no matter how hard I try, it is very cumbersome, because templates keep changing and content keeps getting added.

So I made a cheat sheet with the words that are most commonly used in my proposals that have difference in UK English and US English (view below). Maybe the below spellings can help.


UK English: organise, organised, organisation, standardise, standardised, standardisation, customise, customised, customisation, realise, realised, realisation, summarise, summarised, prioritise, prioritised, prioritisation, whilst

US English: organize, organized, organization, standardize, standardized, standardization, customize, customized, customization, realize, realized, realization, summarize, summarized, prioritize, prioritized, prioritization, while,

Also remember: The past tense of learn in American English is learned. British English has the option of learned or learnt. The same rule applies to dreamed and dreamt, burned and burnt,leaned and learnt.


Have more inputs you can add? Let me know.

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