Meetings in English - How To Give Bad News In Meetings In English - The English Training Company

Meetings in English – How To Give Bad News In Meetings In English

(Photo source: ‘The News’

It’s happened to us all. We’ve all received bad news in a meeting in English and it’s difficult.

Now imagine if you had to deliver that same bad news in a meeting in English. How would you communicate it? What would you do the same and do differently?

Here are three useful communication techniques with vocabulary to help you give bad news in meetings in English.  Which one do you use?


Communication Technique #1: Be straight and direct with your communication

Sometimes people prefer you to be straight and direct when you communicate.

“I’m really sorry, but the news is not good”.

“This is for everyone. I’m afraid I have some bad news about…”

“The client got back to us this week and it’s not good news.”

 “We’ve all worked hard, but I’m afraid the tender bid has gone against us.”


Communication Technique #2: Give reasons and explain why

People understand that things change and explaining why helps.

“As you will be aware, our sector has contracted in the last two years and this has affected us too.”

“As you know, this year has been difficult for sales, which has made us have to rethink our position.”

“Although we offer a great value proposition, customers have become more price sensitive and this has had a negative impact on our revenues.”

“Unfortunately, the market has changed radically in the last three years and it´s no longer cost effective for us to continue in this sector”. 


Communication Technique #3: Offer solutions and some optimism

Offer alternative solutions and provide some optimism about the future. This can help make it easier for people to accept bad news and look forward.

“The last few months we have had to make some painful decisions, but we feel certain that the business will come out stronger than before.”

“Despite not getting the deal over the line, you all did a great job and I am a firm believer that the next deal is right around the corner.”

“If you’d be prepared to accept an alternative solution, we could….”

“We strongly believe that, despite the difficult last year, we’re in an excellent position to end 2020 in profit”.



Read more – Meetings in English – How to feel confident when you disagree in meetings


I hope this helps you with your professional English and in your professional career, Christopher!

The English Training Company – we help companies and professionals to become Advanced Business English Speakers and make their mark! 



This post was written by Christopher Wright and published on 12th November 2019 under the categories: Fluency, Confidence and Motivation, Meeting In English Tips
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