Using the Indirect Approach for Negative Messages
Learning Objective 3
Explain how to use the indirect approach effectively when conveying negative news.
The indirect approach helps prepare readers for the bad news by presenting the reasons for it first. However, the indirect approach is not meant to obscure bad news, delay it, or limit your responsibility. Rather, the purpose of this approach is to ease the blow and help readers accept the situation. When done poorly, the indirect approach can be disrespectful and even unethical. But when done well, it is a good example of audience-oriented communication crafted with attention to ethics and etiquette. Showing consideration for the feelings of others is never dishonest.