The company’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO)
Document Four description: a report (including a Title Page?see my model report). This assignment requires the same content elements as Doc Three?s?with one change (to the APA format) and one addition (confronting opponent?s points). I have included the ?Building Your Doc Four Report,? a handout to help with generating ideas for this complex assignment.
Audience: The company’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO) your boss. You can make up a name and a company (or even use your own job to add more details and realism to this report).
Purpose: To argue–you are the manager of one department (you can make up details), and the CEO has asked you to choose one of the options below in order to solve the explained problem. To persuade the CEO to accept your choice, you will need to offer research and to confront opposing choices (i.e., explain why the other choices will not succeed). (Note: Assume that your reader [your boss] will understand what you mean by ?Option One,? ?Option Two,? etc. since he or she gave you this assignment.)
The Problem: Six months ago, your boss hired an assistant manager for your department, a relative (a daughter-in-law) named Mary Murphy, who had a good performance record in a different business. For the first three months, Murphy did well in your department, but only by following the ideas that had already been started by her predecessor. Since then, Murphy?s performance has fallen off badly. You have not yet discussed this problem with her. Your boss, the CEO, believes that Murphy is frightened of failure and rejection and thus not taking risks or initiatives. In fact, you have noticed that she seems defensive?but still friendly and sociable with co-workers and clients. The CEO has laid out four possible options and wants you to recommend which to take (your report should cover why your choice, not the others, is the right one).
1. Option One: Crossed Fingers. Allow Mary Murphy to solve this problem alone; after all, her past experience (in other jobs) shows her competence. In an informal way (perhaps in the break room when just you and Murphy are present), remind her of the falloff in production and trust that she can solve the problem. In fact, do not hover over Murphy or even monitor her; give her three months to make improvements herself and then analyze the situation.
2. Option Two: Smiles. Take Mary Murphy to lunch. Rather than tell her why you think she is failing lately, build her morale and confidence by being totally positive about her six-month job performance (offer positive, mostly true details about the performance, esp the first three months). Then collaborate on some reasonable and relevant objectives for success during the next quarter (three months).
3. Option Three: Smiles and Frowns. Recognize that although Mary Murphy knows the theory of the job, she cannot turn that theory into practice. Thus, call her into your office and explain the facts: both the pluses and minuses of her job performance. Mention that peers are also having some problems (bit of a lie). Schedule some training sessions in-house for both Murphy and another newer team member or two. In these sessions, brainstorm ideas concerning the application of the job?s theory, role play situations, and then assess Murphy?s job performance (in a one-on-one meeting in your office) in three months.
4. Option Four: Frowns. Take a direct and hands-on approach by setting up a one-on-one appointment with Mary Murphy in your office at the end of the day. Be ?brutally? honest: explain the facts and your concerns. Require individual training sessions (run by a successful colleague) and a weekly action plan. With the colleague and Murphy, go over the plan and the performance every week (after hours on Fridays). Be direct and clear about the performance results?and possible repercussions.
Note that no right or wrong answer exists, that ?firing? is not an option, and that you must choose one of the four above, not a combination of two or more. To see how to use the APA format, how to confront opposing points, and how to create a Title Page, check my Doc Four Report Model **Which I have included**. For your own References list, offer at least three quality sources, and by ?quality,? I mean this: Instead of using statistics from a newspaper article, find the study that the article?s writer used. You might want to research motivational tactics, managerial techniques, business trends?anything that relates to and supports your ideas. A personal interview with a qualified relevant source also provides effective research, but you would never want all interviews as your research. Offer a variety of sources and don?t use the same source more than twice in a row (good general advice). Also, consider the arguments against your purpose statement (your option choice) and deal with them somewhere in your report: in one or more body paragraphs. Remember to concede if you have to, but to refute if you can.