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10 - 1 Business Communication: Process and Product , Mary Ellen Guffey, South-Western. Goals in Communicating Bad News To make the reader understand and accept the bad news To promote and maintain a good image of the writer and the writer’s organization

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10 - 1

Business Communication: Process and Product, Mary Ellen Guffey, South-Western.

goals in communicating bad news
Goals in CommunicatingBad News
  • To make the reader understand and accept the bad news
  • To promote and maintain a good image of the writer and the writer’s organization
  • To make the message so clear that additional correspondence is unnecessary
  • To avoid legal liability

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the indirect pattern
The Indirect Pattern
  • BUFFER – a neutral or positive opening that does not reveal the bad news
  • REASONS – an explanation of the causes for the bad news
  • BAD NEWS – a clear but understated announcement of the bad news that may include an alternative or compromise
  • CLOSE – a personalizing, forward-looking, pleasant statement

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buffer
Buffer
  • Pay a compliment, show appreciation for past action, or refer to something mutually understood.
  • Avoid raising false hopes.
  • Avoid thanking the receiver for something you are about to refuse.

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reasons
Reasons
  • Explain why the request must be denied, without revealing the refusal.
  • Avoid negativity (unfortunately, impossible).
  • Show how your decision benefits the receiver or others, if possible.

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bad news
Bad News
  • Soften the bad news by
  • (1) subordinating it (although we can’t loan our equipment, we can……)
  • (2) embedding it in a long sentence or paragraph.

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bad news8
Bad News
  • Consider implying the refusal, but be certain it is clear.
  • Suggest an alternative, if one exists.

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close
Close
  • Supply more information about an alternative, if one is offered.
  • Look forward to future relations.
  • Offer good wishes and compliments.
  • Avoid referring to the refusal.

10 - 18

buffer11
Buffer
  • Express appreciation for the customer’s patronage or for his or her writing.
  • Show agreement on some point, review the facts, or show understanding.

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reasons12
Reasons
  • Justify the bad news with objective reasons (except in credit denials).
  • Avoid blaming the customer or hiding behind company policy.
  • Look for reader benefits.

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bad news13
Bad News
  • State the bad news objectively or imply it.

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close14
Close
  • Suggest an action or an alternative.
  • Look forward to future business, offer best wishes, refer to gifts.
  • Don’t mention the bad news.

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buffer16
Buffer
  • Provide some good news (if possible), praise, appreciation, agreement, or understanding.
  • Discuss facts leading to the reasons section.

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reasons17
Reasons
  • Explain what caused the decision necessitating the bad news.
  • Use objective, nonjudgmental, and nondiscriminatory language.
  • Show empathy and fairness.

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bad news18
Bad News
  • Explain the bad news clearly, but don’t accentuate it.
  • Avoid negative language.

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close19
Close
  • End on a positive, friendly note.
  • For job refusals, extend good wishes.

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