Task: Choose one of the situations below and write an appropriate message. Audiences and formats are built into each problem. Make up whatever details you feel are necessary and develop your case.
Grading criteria: In this assignment, retaining goodwill is important – you might need the recipient’s services in the future. Be attentive to how you use credibility, audience emotions, etc. All aspects of communication matter. “Organization” includes how present the negative information (direct or indirect approach). “Self expression” is about maintaining goodwill. “Language use” includes tone.
You are the manager of Sports Warehouse, a new sporting goods store near the mall. Your store policy is to offer in-store credit accounts for customers who have good jobs and excellent credit. This week, you received a credit application from Maja Patel, a full-time graduate student at Brookfield University and an avid sports enthusiast. Maja went from high school to college, then to graduate school without ever working full time. She has few assets but not many liabilities because her parents paid for all of her expenses until she started graduate school. She is scheduled to graduate with a master’s degree next year. You have decided to refuse her credit application but you do not want to upset her because she will hopefully become a good customer after graduation. Write a credit refusal message to Maja, but retain goodwill.
Work Request Refusal
You have been out of school for five years now and things are going well. You earned your degree and are now successfully operating your own business consulting firm (you pick the area of expertise). Business is good; in fact, it is so good that you find it difficult to keep up with all of the requests for your services. One of your best clients has just asked you to take on a huge new project that would create enough work to keep your whole organization busy for three months. One of the things that you refuse to do, however, is accept more work than you can handle in an efficient, effective way for your clients. In this case, you have other commitments, so you must turn down this request. Write a message to your client explaining the situation and suggest possible alternative solutions to their needs.
Project Management Fail
You are the project manager for a specialized software company called ByteWare. Although your project management skills are quite good, you do occasionally run into unforeseen circumstances that lead to less-than-ideal results. Halfway through the installation of a new document management system (DMS) for an important client, you realize that you underestimated the complexity of linking this new DMS to the company’s existing document storage and retrieval system. Although your current contract with the firm allows for a 20 percent budget overrun, you have an established track record for completing projects on time and within budget. This time, however, you have the unpleasant task of explaining to your client that the project will take two weeks longer to complete than expected and will be fully 20 percent over budget. Carefully craft a message to your client and inform her of the situation.