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CMN 124 (16)

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CMN 124
John Burry

George Nico Communication in BTM (Notes) 10/2/12 Negative News - The Indirect Strategy o Strategic negative messages require special attention to content, structure, context and tone. o The objective is to preserve goodwill and ensure the recipient finishes reading the message and accepts the news without feeling bitter or hostile. o Primary Goals:  Clarity: Deliver the news clearly, briefly, respectfully – and only once.  Acceptance: Help readers accept the bad news by showing fairness and logic of the decision, explaining when possible  Positive image: maintain and build goodwill – toward reader and writer  Protection: protect yourself and your organization from legal liability o Use the indirect strategy when:  You don’t know the reader well  The bad news is unexpected o The indirect approach – to prepare the reader  Buffer: neutral but meaningful statement that doesn’t mention the bad news  Reason: gives an explanation before disclosing the bad news  Bad news: a clear, but understated announcement of the news strategically positioned in the body of the communication  Close: personalized, forward-looking, pleasant statements o Avoiding three causes of legal problems  Abusive language  Careless language  The good-guy syndrome o Buffer the opening:  Begin with a neutral but meaningful introduction o Some opening possibilities:  Best news: start with the part of the message that represents the best news  Compliment/appreciation: start with honest and sincere language  Agreement: make a relevant statement with which you can both agree  Facts: provide objective information introducing bad news  Understanding: express understanding and concern  Apology: if necessary, do it briefly, early, and sincerely. o Presenting the reasons: George Nico
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