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Rural Retreat is the Name of an International Hotel – Business Communication

Internal Code: MAS7042

Business Communication

Rural Retreat is the name of an international hotel situated about an hour’s drive from Queenstown. Although it is conveniently close to ski fields, lakes, rivers, and other resort areas, the hotel prides itself on its discreet charm and emphasises the secluded and hideaway nature of the environment. The hotel employs 12 people full time and uses casual staff to service demand in peak tourist periods. The manager is Tom Murphy. He is a very personable, extroverted character who works hard but also enjoys socialising with guests. Each morning he tours the dining room, inspecting the uniforms of his staff, and speaks to each guest. He enjoys talking to people, and he takes pride in his ability as a communicator. However, he gets concerned when he sees members of staff talking with each other for any length of time. Sandra Horan has just been appointed as his deputy. She is a recent business school graduate and has expertise in both marketing and information technology.
‘You are just what we need,’ said Tom, when Sandra started work on her first day. ‘We have to move with the times and the degree that you have is a perfect ladder to the future for us. Computers and marketing! That’s the ticket!’ ‘Well, the human dimension of communication is important too, Mr. Murphy. In my studies, I found repeated evidence in surveys showing people prefer to chat face to face rather than …’


1) Using the interaction model of communication, explain the various parts of the model (sender, receiver, channel, noise, and so on) with regards to Joan and her staff when they use the computer program to input and check room status.

2) Give examples of three types of stories at Rural Retreat.

3) Define the story types.

4) Explain how the stories from the case study match them.

5) Using Forman’s framework to inform your discussion, choose one of the stories from (ii) and explain whether or not its audience would likely consider it authentic.

6) Define the terms ‘frontstage’ and ‘backstage’.

7) Explain how these terms can clarify some of the differences between Tom and Sandra’s communication styles, and to help the reader understand the case study.


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