3) “Sandwich" the bad news between two items of good news.
“ The recent environmental impact review has resulted in an exciting new policy of resource management which is due to be implemented next month. At this stage the area has a 10% contamination rate. The goal is to reduce that figure to 5% within two years and less than 1% within eight years.”
Negative: “I’m sorry that the chairs will not be ready by August 25 as promised.”
Better: “Due to a strike against the manufacturer, the desk chairs you ordered will not be ready until November. Do you want to keep that order, or would you like to look at the models available from other suppliers?”