Negative communication is a kind of statement wherein the reader will receive a disapproving message regarding a matter where he/she is concerned. These messages usually result in an unpleasant negative reaction to the reader or receiver of the message so great caution is observed in order not to make the reader’s reaction worse than expected.
Despite the fact that it results to a negative reaction to the reader, negative communication is still a part of any work. One situation is telling an employee who applied for a higher position in his company that he is not the one chosen for the position. An example of a letter having this kind of situation may be used in order to further describe the principles behind the construction of negative messages. The letter goes this way:
Jan. 04, 1979
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Call Center Representative, Outbound Services
Los Angeles, California 91330-8245
Dear Ms. Sweet:
Thank you for applying for the Team Leader position. Your qualifications are good and may improve as you work hand in hand in our company.
I have examined your information and seen that your stay in the company is not long enough to equip you in being a better team leader. You have been in the company for eight months and I am sure that you will continue to progress in the succeeding months or years to come. A greater amount of experience will make you more proficient. Also, a greater exposure to team building activities will enable you to be a better team leader in the future.
Your good communication skills and good relationship with your coworkers are good points for you for these qualities are great points in order to be entitled as a team leader. Keep them up.
Manager for Outbound Services
In the letter, a buffer beginning was used. After a brief beginning, the reason for the letter is stated but not directly. It tries to deliver to the reader that she has not been accepted for the team leader position. The reason however is directly stated so that the reader knows why she has not been accepted. The lead was stated right after the pace in order for the reader not to have false hopes regarding her application. Following the lead is a suggestion that will enable the reader to be a better team leader in the future.
A suggestion is put here to make clear that she may still be able to be a good team leader given the stated suggestion. The suggestion was also the motivation used so that the reader will still do well in her job and continue working in the company. A short but positive end is used in order not to increase the disappointment that the reader already have. Stating the positive points of the reader in the end will probably revive the reader and still hope for a better improvement and position in the company.
It may be seen in the letter that it has not been directly stated that she was not qualified for the position. It has been in this manner because it may probably result to negative psychological effects to the reader and may perhaps, will discourage her to re-apply for the position even when she has already finished all the requirements.
This kind of message was created very carefully so that the negative effects will not increase.
As long as a negative message are to be delivered, proper care and attention to the words that should be used should be taken into great consideration. It should always be put in mind that negative effects especially psychologically, may probably occur in great amounts if the message was not taken with great concern.
Writing Negative Messages. (21 August 2002) Retrieved on Apr 26, 2007 from http://homepages.wmich.edu/%7Ebowman/badnews.html
Revive the Lost Art. Retrieved on Apr 26, 2007 from http://www.csun.edu/%7Evcecn006/lettr.html
Remember. This is just a sample.
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