Q and A for August – Delivering Bad News

Jane asks how to you deliver bad news – in her instance when one of her franchises has failed or stopped trading etc.


It really simple – what’s happened, why it happened how you are going to react to it and why?  And lots of reassurance.


And you all know I was going to say this but honesty is always the best policy and in relationship management, it best to pay all cards on the table. That’s not to say you can’t manage the hand.


Now Jane I don’t know the whys and wherefores of this instance of this but we had one go off the rails recently and our message had to have the key components of:


This very shocking thing has happened.

This is how we have acted to minimalise damage to the brand you have invested in.

This is what we have done legally to ensure that anyone tempted to do the same knows the full legal consequence of this actions.

We love the rest of you very much, onwards and upwards


Don’t bury bad news.  If people get a whisper and feel insecure that will do a lot more damage than acknowledging a bad thing has happened. Managed honesty is always the best policy.  And so much easier too!


People understand things go wrong. Be honest, acknowledge stuff happens, put preventatives in place to preserve and promote in future and move on.  It’s probably not a big a deal as you think it is and you are agonizing over detail when actually the above will do fine.


If you want me to proof it send it over otherwise see you next week at Katelester.com.