Communicating Bad News Handle with Care Review the

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Communicating Bad News “Handle with Care!”

Communicating Bad News “Handle with Care!”

Review: the direct approach state main point n provide background and other information n

Review: the direct approach state main point n provide background and other information n provide a “good will” ending n

Question: n under what circumstances might we want to use the direct approach for

Question: n under what circumstances might we want to use the direct approach for communication bad news?

General Principle: n for communicating bad news, use the indirect approach

General Principle: n for communicating bad news, use the indirect approach

Indirect Organizational Approach (for delivering bad news) establish “good will” n provide background, reasons,

Indirect Organizational Approach (for delivering bad news) establish “good will” n provide background, reasons, and other information n communicate the bad news (via buffering) n provide a “good will” ending n

Our Goal! n To clearly communicate the bad news while minimizing its impact, in

Our Goal! n To clearly communicate the bad news while minimizing its impact, in order to maintain a positive business relationship with the recipient

Establishing Good Will be positive, not neutral n be upbeat; appeal to the reader’s

Establishing Good Will be positive, not neutral n be upbeat; appeal to the reader’s heart, not head n our goal: to counteract the reader’s negative emotions: anger, fear and anxiety n

Good Will Options: express thanks or appreciation n praise the receiver n praise your

Good Will Options: express thanks or appreciation n praise the receiver n praise your product n if all else fails: indicate you have received the letter to which you are responding n

Background, Reasons, Etc. focus on factual statements n be reasonable: appeal to the head,

Background, Reasons, Etc. focus on factual statements n be reasonable: appeal to the head, not the heart n give reasons for giving bad news, without indicating that you are giving bad news! n be detailed n avoid quoting “policy” n

Communicate the Bad News avoid “no, ” “not, ” and “won’t” n options: n

Communicate the Bad News avoid “no, ” “not, ” and “won’t” n options: n – – – unable cannot must decline don’t apologize n but DO communicate the bad news n

Bad News: Buffering de-emphasize the bad news n place it in: n – –

Bad News: Buffering de-emphasize the bad news n place it in: n – – – n the middle of a paragraph the middle of a sentence within a dependent clause if possible, offer something nice – but don’t contradict the bad news!

Provide a “Good Will” Ending return to upbeat n if possible, elaborate on and

Provide a “Good Will” Ending return to upbeat n if possible, elaborate on and apply the “something nice” offered n

Final Note n while we are emphasizing delivering bad news via letter, the same

Final Note n while we are emphasizing delivering bad news via letter, the same strategy works effectively for memos and spoken communication