You are the leader of a team of seven people responsible for producing customised embroidered work wear.

You are the leader of a team of seven people responsible for producing customised embroidered work wear. Your team receives the job order and details from the sales department and once you have filled the order, it is passed to the dispatch team to generate the paperwork and deliver the goods to the customer.

The company that you work for has created a niche market by being willing to embroider stock that is provided by the customer (that is, bought from another store), by filling small orders all at a competitive price. They offer a money back guarantee for any product that does not meet the customer’s expectations.

You have only been in this job for two months having been promoted from a design position. The previous manager ruled with an iron fist and there was a lot of tension amongst the team. Each person just got on with their job but did not really help anyone else out.

You pride yourself on being a good leader and have been actively working towards creating a happy, cooperative team. You have done this by modelling cooperative behaviour and encouraging other team members to make suggestions. Recently a team member suggested a new way of transferring the logo onto the garment and creating the embroidery pattern. The rest of the team thought it was a good idea so you allowed production methods to be altered. This has slowed production down but you are confident that once mastered, it will improve efficiency.

All seems to go well until your line manager calls you into their office to discuss your team’s performance. They inform you that two major customers have rung them this morning complaining that their logos are not straight and a third says their shirts are now a week over due. Your manager is adamant that your team must learn from their mistakes. They advise you that the team must work overtime tonight until the overdue shirts are dispatched, and that they must return to the original method of marking logos.

Your job is to convey this news to your team. You know they will be disappointed as they were just starting to feel like management were taking notice of their ideas and now it seems that it will all go back to how it was before.

1. What is the best method of communicating this news to the team? (1 sentence)

2. How can you pass on your line manager’s directives to the team without demoralising them? (75–100 words)

3. What additional comments can you make/ actions can you take to maintain good communication? (50–75 words)

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