Breaking Bad News - In the Workplace

2개월 전

In conveying bad news, a person may encounter difficulty in maintaining professionalism due to the ‘nature’ of bad news. Reactions vary depending on the severity of the bad news, as well as the person(s) receiving the bad news. Due to the ‘touchy’ nature of bad news communication, utilizing tricks/tips when delivering bad news can ensure that a communicator mitigates problems preemptively. In this document, three articles were read/analyzed for tips and tricks related to delivering bad news in a business environment/setting. These methods vary from providing positive news alongside bad news, to providing positive vocabulary and perspectives within the delivery of bad news, and many more tactics of which are discussed in the following report/analysis.

 Communication in a business environment differ in standards of vocabulary/formality as compared to personal communication efforts in which negative news is delivered. However, in each case, the news is being delivered to a human being that will react in some-way to the news that is delivered. Ensuring that a moral approach is taken in any situation defines the person delivering the news to the person receiving. Therefore, maintaining a level of empathy when delivering bad news, whether in a professional, or personal setting in necessary for any effective communication effort.

Take a look at the provided articles and see what conclusion you come to!

Analysis/Conclusion of Research

 Bad news can be difficult to receive, therefore minimizing the impact of bad news when conveying/communicating said news is good practice in any given business communication. When expressing bad news in a business environment, providing the receiving party(s) with optimism and appropriate positivity given the circumstances is a tactic that ‘softens’ the negative impact for the party(s).

 In my analysis of three articles (provided in the reference section of this article) covering the topic of ‘delivering bad news’, I discovered a number-of great tips/tactics for anyone who may be responsible for ‘breaking’ bad news in a business environment. One tactic that stood out to me was that it is ideal to “avoid minimizing the message with cheerful, positive language. Bad news is not more palatable with a sweet coating” (Gaertner-Johnson, Lynn). Maintaining an appropriate level of positivity when delivering bad news is certainly necessary, as an overuse of positivity may be misconceived as disrespect to the receiving party. “If leading with the negative news might be too harsh and emphatic, and your decision might sound unreasonable until the reader has heard the rationale, buffer the bad news indirectly by beginning with a neutral and relevant statement” (Cullen, Mary). It may even-be beneficial, depending on the situation, to “see it through their eyes” (Flood, Scott).

Take a look at the provided articles and see what conclusion you come to!

The tactics found/concluded through in/through my research enable a person to provide the delivery of bad news in a way that will soften the negative impact upon the person.

 Each idea and method found during my research has reinforced my understanding of appropriate ways to deliver bad news in a business communication effort. These methods will surely provide me with reference when faced with delivering bad news in the future while in a business environment.

Do you agree with the tactics and conclusions that I came to through my analysis of the provided articles? Please let me know in the comment section below!


Flood, Scott. (n.d.). Seven good ways to deliver bad news. Retrieved from

Cullen, Mary. (Mon., Nov 14, 2011.). How to Deliver Bad News in Business Writing. Retrieved from

Gaertner-Johnson, Lynn. (n.d.). Retrieved from

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