Toys ‘R’ Us announced late Monday that it has filed for bankruptcy, as the retail chain struggles under the weight of nearly $5 billion in debt. While its finances present an existential threat, an equally sizable challenge comes from within: how to keep its nearly 64,000 employees informed while also calming fears.
Pizza Hut is facing heat on social media after an internal memo, posted at one of the chain’s Jacksonville, Florida locations before Hurricane Irma made landfall in the area, threatened to punish employees that evacuated more than 24 hours before the storm. But while social media’s ire is centered on the Jacksonville location’s apparent disregard for employee safety, one key phrase in the memo, the location’s “commitment to the community,” raises an important point.
With employees taking stands on political issues and urging their companies to do the same, what contribution can communicators make to keeping a brand’s reputation unblemished by political turmoil? Our author provides 5 steps that communicators can take to put their company in a position to receive limited negative public attention, minimize business impact and reputation damage.
Internal communications is a pain point for brands and organizations large and small in normal times. When significant changes are occurring inside an organization it can make communications even more difficult. Ally Bunin, a VP for internal communications at Brighton Health Plan Solutions, explains how her brand communicated during a period of radical internal changes.
With all the good that comes from social media, there also are negatives. One is that employees can criticize their company online and make life even more anxious for communicators. The Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) encountered such an instance a few months ago when it introduced random drug and alcohol testing of employees. An outcry went up in some quarters over this policy. Here’s how TTC handled the situation.
A long “manifesto” decrying efforts at addressing diversity has been making the rounds inside Google via internal message boards and social networks. The author, a male software engineer, argues that there are inherent differences between men and women that account for perceived gender gaps. Thus Google’s Danielle Brown, who took up the mantle of vice president of diversity, integrity & governance at the end of June, already finds herself in a delicate internal communications test.
A few years ago, each of Southwest Airline’s departments used social media in their own way, independent of each other. But the firm quickly moved to create “an enterprise-level function with multiple players and dotted lines back to operational units, while still maintaining a master strategy,” according to Linda Rutherford, Southwest’s CCO. To her, the question of who should own social media centers around how an organization approaches customer engagement.
In the upcoming Arthur W. Page Society New CCO podcast, MillerCoors CCO Pete Marino talks about the company’s internal video channel MCTV, among other topics. PR News was provided an advance copy. In an interview with us, Marino expands on MCTV as well as what keeps him up at nights.
If the lines between paid, owned and earned media have become blurred, why is the internal structure at most organizations still so linear? In this commentary, Brooks Thomas, social business advisor with Southwest Airlines, argues for a more integrated approach and provides four tips for smaller organizations looking to bust down the silos between those three types of content.
Uber is facing another PR crisis after a June 13 sexist boardroom exchange led to the ouster of board member David Bonderman. This shows Uber’s discriminatory culture is still deeply ingrained at the highest levels, according to Jessica Fish, senior consultant at Leader Networks. And the incident serves as a reminder for communicators to examine their own personal beliefs and workplaces for implicit and unconscious biases about race and gender long before they are exposed in a public setting.