Write a brief business message delivering bad news using the following scenario:
Mr. John Chikwem, an employee of Vertigo, Inc., has requested that you, his supervisor, write a one-page letter of recommendation in support of his request for promotion and pay raise. You review your files on Mr. Chikwem and realize that he has had mediocre performance appraisals during the last year. You see that in your two (6-month interval) appraisals, you have indicated that Mr. Chikwem has not exceeded your expectations in any area at all, but has met minimum standards. (If you were grading him, he would receive a C or average grade.) You also noted that Mr. Chikwem needs to work on his writing skills. You conclude you must deny his request for a positive letter of recommendation. As Mr. Chikwem’s supervisor, you must write a one-page letter to tell him you will not write this letter and explain why. You must use concrete references to his performance and previous appraisals. You must be positive when delivering this bad news and not discourage Mr. Chikwem from trying to improve his performance appraisals. Think about what a supervisor would do in this case for a valued employee.
Criteria for grading: Bad News Letter
Letter meets assignment criteria, deadline, style, and length
Is addressed to and names a specific person
Writer is clearly identified
Problem is clearly described
Decision is clearly stated up front, but buffer may be present elsewhere
Clarity of controlling idea and organization
Accommodates audience needs
Communicates intent and content to audience
Provides relevant facts and evidence; refers to and gives brief explanations
Requests specific action in the closing
Tone and diction are positive, business-like, and professional
Words are precise, accurate, and appropriate for business
Sentences are concise, fluent, and varied
There are no writing and format errors.
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