A Critical Tool for Small Business -- SPIKES: Six steps for breaking bad news

John Lipinski, Joette Wisnieski, Stephen W Osborne




One of the greatest challenges facing any business manager or owner is breaking bad news (BBN).  This is especially true for managers and owners of small business as they are likely to have contact with a greater variety of personnel, more contact with customers, and less ability to delegate such tasks.  Research in the management literature has been limited on this topic.  As such, we went to an alternative field of research, BBN in the medical field, and recommend a strategy that small business practitioners can adopt to tackle this challenging task.  This is a particularly difficult issue for student consulting projects such as those encountered in the Small Business Institute (SBI) Program where not all outcomes are what the client would like to hear.



small business owners; bad news;

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