Word Choice – More Important Versus More Importantly

A BizWritingTip reader wrote: Something “that bothers me almost as much as ‘irregardless’ — and may be more commonly used — is ‘more importantly.’ Is it just me or is this actually correct?”

BizWritingTip Response: I hate to tell this, Peter, but when you are starting a sentence “more important” and “more importantly” are considered equally acceptable by the Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary of English Usage.

Examples (equally correct)

More important, we should set the budget for the conference.

More importantly, we should set the budget for the conference.

In addition, the Oxford Canadian Dictionary states: “more importantly is overwhelmingly more common and totally unobjectionable.”


Another homophone story:

Katherine wrote: “When describing an off-site meeting in the company newsletter, a colleague referred to the lovely ‘pompous’ grass on either side of the stage. She had refused to believe me when I said the grass was actually called ‘pampas.’ After all, the spell checker accepted pompous.” (Pompous means self-important.)