Negative Messages are not bad after all
What is a Negative Message?
What is a negative message? You turn on the radio as you are driving to work and the weather forecast reports it will be bright and sunny today. You give a big sigh of gladness since it has been 4 days straight that you have not seen the sun, and four days in a row you have been late to work for the continuous bad weather.
Unfortunately the weather forecast reports a closure in the highway you where about to take, affecting your route because you now must take a detour that takes several hours to get to your destination, and you only have half an hour to arrive to work. Bad news given like these is considered negative messages.
The Importance of introducing Negative Messages
What is the importance of a negative message?
Negative messages should not necessarily be considered bad. Negative messages, if expressed correctly could do positive changes in a business. For example, you are aware that production in the past month was decreasing due to uncommon mistakes; obviously you want to pick up production toward the increasing direction, so you must notify the employees of the bad news of the previous month.
If expressed correctly the body of employees will be more aware of the situation and start paying close attention to these uncommon mistakes and soon enough you have production going right back up! Always remember that a negative message is a key to success, you need negative messages to show the employees where they stand, if you do not use this key, how can your employees improve in their weaknesses? Think of it as a mirror, a mirror is a handy tool because it shows you a reflection of an image.
Imagine if you are trying to fix your hair for a special occasion without one, it would be very difficult to do so. In the same way you have a negative message to show how well your employees as a company are doing, just like a mirror. Now you want to improve your company, but in order to do so you need a reflection and this is where negative messages come in place.
Expressing the Negative Message
How can I express a negative message? In one hand you have positive messages and in the other, you have the negative messages and it turns out that the negative messages are the most difficult ones to express. Why? The reason being is no one really likes to be informed of a negative message. No matter how drastic this factor is you can still express a negative message and maintain the person in goodwill. The question that now appears is how? How can I express a negative message? Though challenging you can still express a negative message with these useful techniques.
2. Presenting the negative message
3. Polite close
Using these 3 techniques will help you establish and deliver a message successfully; it will also present you with positive responses from your employees. Apply them to your message and your goal will be met!
Techniques for Expressing a Negative Message
What is the word “buffer” imply?
It can be illustrated like this: On a car you have a bumper, when you are in a collision involving the bumper; the bumper absorbs the impact and lightens the collision impact just like a cushion. In presenting a negative message you can compare it to a car collision impact and you have the “buffer” to absorb the impact just like the bumper.
You never want to start with the negative message because you will simply offend the person, which is why it is very important to create a “buffer” or in other words present a positive message to prepare the person for the impact or say negative message.
Start of with saying “Thank you for…. You did excellent on….” Showing such appreciation will be an excellent way to start your “buffer.” Make sure your “buffer does not sound too good otherwise when you begin with the negative message it would be rather hard for the person to accept it, but do not make the negative message become obvious in your “buffer” either, giving a false impression can trigger a bad response.
Having this in mind, commence with the conclusion of your “buffer” by letting them know why you are mentioning the negative message. If done exactly like it is been mentioned, your “buffer” will certainly soften the impact and there is no doubt your employees will come to an agreement. After you have finished explaining the reasons to your upcoming message it should slowly slide over to the negative message naturally.
Expressing the negative message:
This is where the challenge is met the most, expressing the negative message. Take very good precaution when you give out the negative message, make sure it is as brief as possible. Do not emphasize the message with repetition that will simply give the person the wrong impression of your message. Try to reason instead by suggesting what can be done to prevent the complaint.
Avoid highlighting the errors or pointing out what they did not do. Instead try to have a positive attitude to what you are mentioning. You may mention the effects it has caused such as; “When you drop the…. it will…..” is an example of how you may mention it. Remember you want to emphasize the negative message to your employees but you also want them to learn form it.Finally the polite close, on the polite close you want inform them with additional reasons for the negative message, notify them what can be the effects to the company if this continued or give examples of other companies and there mistakes and what happened. Also you may mention the advantages competitors may have over you if such problem continues. By mentioning these factors you rise up awareness to your employees of the conditions and without doubt your employees will be more aware. In the final, close politely. Let the person know that you care, and so you would prevent the idea that it is O.K. to keep doing so