Sharing bad news
A team charter, often 1-2 pages, records agreements a team has regarding its mission, values (integrity, accountability, etc.) and process agreements (e.g. setting priorities, meetings, resolving conflict, etc.). It is a vital managerial tool.
To give bad news, start with the end in mind.
Were standards clear? Do facts confirm actions?
And be aware: When you speak you may find
Out about you! What triggers, distractions
And ancient wounds does bad news raise? Be kind
But don’t invite your past to be present
At table with care and clarity. Find
A soul space replete with luminescent
Beauty. Go root your soul there, and then share
Your standards and observations. Listen.
Walk it back if you’ve found you’ve been unfair.
If not, be crisp and clear. No digression.
See the reason for a clear team charter?
It helps bad news talks be a lot smarter.
-Allegra Jordan, 2019.