Read the sample directive below. Answer the questions thoroughly.
This directive was sent to the members of a Montana government department. The questions below ask you to think about the process of writing persuasive directives (as discussed on p. 320).
1. How would you describe the tone used by the writer? Provide an example to sup- port your claim.
2. The writer presents examples of what he calls violations of the state travel policy. Do these examples provide solid evidence that violations of the policy have in fact occurred?
3. How e!ectively has the writer encouraged his sta! to abide by the travel policy? How might he improve the persuasiveness of the directive?
Writing a Persuasive Directive
To: Members, Budget Allocation O!ce From: Harold J. Je”erson, Director Subject: Travel Policy Date: January 23, 2016
It has come to my attention that certain members of this o!ce are not abiding by the travel policies approved by the state. Let me o”er a few examples.
The Montana Revised Code includes this statement in its introduction:
Persons who travel on State business are encouraged to incur the lowest practical and reasonable expense while still traveling in an e!cient and timely manner. Those traveling on State business are expected to avoid impropriety, or the appearance of impropriety, in any travel expense. They must conduct State business with integrity, in compliance with applicable laws, and in a manner that excludes consideration of personal advantage.
Yet I have learned from o!cial sources that on four occasions in the last #scal year, employees of this o!ce have acted in $agrant violation of this policy. Two occasions involved choosing a $ight that left at a more convenient time in the morning but that cost almost $160 more. One involved selecting a cab, rather than a shuttle bus, for a trip from the airport to downtown (a $24 di”erence), and one involved using room service when the motel has a café (a $14 di”erence).
Another provision of the travel policy that has been violated on more than one occasion is the following:
Travel expenses are not paid in advance except for airfare charged to the State air travel card, for online (Internet) air or train ticket purchases, and for conference registrations.
Two employees have on more than three occasions each received reimbursements for air and/or train reservations made using their personal credit cards. As you know, using personal credit cards leaves the State without o!cial documentation of the expense and gives the traveler bonus miles and/or cash back that properly belongs to the State.
These are just two of the kinds of irregularities that have been brought to my attention. I do not need to tell you that these violations constitute serious breaches of public ethics. If they recur, they will be dealt with harshly. I sincerely hope that I do not have to address this issue again.
D O C U M E N T A N A LYS I S AC T I V I T Y
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