Review the email to Bobby Johnson found in chapter 5 under heading “choosing a channel” in your text book:
( I copy and past the heading)
Choosing a Channel
The extent of options for sending effective business messages makes choosing the right channel even more complex. When choosing a channel, many factors have to be considered: the intent of the message, the understanding of the receiver and the meaning inherent in the channel itself.
Additionally, a certain expertise is required and expected for using each channel effectively. No longer can you compose an email message and send it off before reviewing it. Spellchecking the document is a necessity, but often this is not enough, as you cannot depend on this limited process to be completely accurate.
You have to reread the email from the perspective of the receiver. Is each word understandable? Will the receiver get what “it” refers to in the first sentence? Is all the necessary information included for a complete understanding of the communication? If any vital element of the message is cloudy or excluded, the communication is ineffective.
Take a look at this internal email memo, sent to 50 people, and see if you can identify some of the communication problems:
- TO: Bobby Johnson
- SUBJECT: Retirement Party
- Hello everyone. As you know Joe Banyon is retiring next month. I’ve been asked by some of his friends to arrange a little farewell party in his honour.
- The date is Friday, 6 p.m. at City Café, and we hope you can make it.
- We would like to give him a gift certificate. We are asking everyone to contribute. Let me know ASAP.
- See you there.
What information was missing? The most glaring, of course, is that there is no date mentioned. What about the address of the restaurant? There is an assumption by the sender that everyone knows where this establishment is located. Details are imperative to good communication.
Bobby wants people to contribute, but, for the people receiving the message, this could be a sensitive issue as it is unclear as to whether their contribution goes to a gift certificate or if it covers the party expenses and the gift. The memo is unclear if the party will include a full-course dinner or just drinks at the bar, nor does it state whether spouses are invited. Finally, ASAP is an unclear directive.
Recipients of this email need more information. Those invited will either send an email asking for more details or place a phone call to get the correct information. Whichever they do, Bobby faces the possibility of 50 email messages or phone calls, all because he didn’t take time to read over his memo from an audience-centred perspective.
Accuracy is important no matter which channel you use. Because change is so rapid in the global marketplace, it is imperative that you check and recheck your message for any inaccuracies. Even though senders must file a report quickly, it doesn’t mean the message can contain errors. The receivers of messages expect clear, complete and accurate messages. They don’t care that you only had an hour to get the report or message out.
Write a three to four (3-4) page paper that answers the following:
- Identify the communication problems with the email.
- Using the 10 Cs for Writing Effectively, rewrite the email.
Include: content, completeness, correctness, clarity, coherence, conciseness, connection, creativity, courtesy, and closure.
- Identify which Cs you used where and how that changed the email in terms of the effectiveness.
- Identify the strategies used for composing a more effective message.
The format of the paper is to be as follows:
- Typed, double-spaced, Times New Roman font (size 12), one-inch margins on all sides, APA format in a Microsoft Word document.
- Use headers for each of the subjects being covered, followed by your response.
- In addition to the three to four (3-4) pages required, a title page is to be included. The title page is to contain the title of the assignment, your name, the instructor’s name, the course title, and the date.
Note: You will be graded on the quality of your answers, the logic/organization of the report, your language skills, and your writing skills.