1. Communication author Dana Bristol-Smith likens delivering bad news to removing a Band-Aid—you can do it slowly or quickly. She thinks that quickly is better, particularly when companies must give bad news to employees.25 Do you agree or disagree? (Objs. 1–6)
2. Respected industry analyst Gartner Research issued a report nam- ing social networking as one of the top ten disruptive influences shaping information technology in the next five years.26 Should organizations fear Web sites where consumers post negative mes- sages about products and services? What actions can companies take in response to this disruptive influence? (Objs. 1–5)
3. Consider times when you have been aware that others were using the indirect strategy in writing or speaking to you. How did you react? (Obj. 2)
4. When Boeing Aircraft reported that a laptop containing the names, salary information, and social security numbers of 382,000 employ- ees had been stolen from an employee’s car, CEO Jim McNerney
wrote this e-mail to employees: “I’ve received many e-mails over the past 24 hours from employees expressing disappointment, frustration, and downright anger about yesterday’s announcement of personal information belonging to thousands of employees and retirees being on a stolen computer. I’m just as disappointed as you are about it. I know that many of us feel that this data loss amounts to a betrayal of the trust we place in the company to safeguard
our personal information. I certainly do.” Critics have faulted this apology for its timing and content. Do you agree?
5. Ethical Issue: You work for a large corporation with headquarters in a small town. Recently you received shoddy repair work and a huge bill from a local garage. Your car’s transmission has the same problems that it did before you took it in for repair. You know that a complaint letter written on your corporation’s stationery would be much more authoritative than one written on plain stationery. Should you use corporation stationery? (Obj. 1)