How Avid handled a crisis–promptly, simply, inclusively and authentically–is a compelling story from which communicators can learn.
Some PR crises spring from bad facts, elements in a situation that are difficult to deny. We examine how they influenced two crises.
The friends and relationships needed during a PR crisis often are far different from the partnerships you focus on when operating at normal times. Often, the individuals and institutions that are best positioned to provide support when you have problems are quite different from those you and your company engage with on a day-to-day basis. The problem is most companies not only fail to build those bridges, but they also do not even know who these entities are or where to start.
There is no shortage of PR pros and pundits offering advice about how companies should respond to controversial social issues. Company executives ask whether or not to take a public position. If so, should they speak proactively or only in response to media inquiries? Or, should they discuss an issue internally only, with employees?
Too often, what many perceive as the end of a PR crisis, the apology, seems formulaic. The company or person admits they’ve done something wrong, issues an apology and all is forgiven. We discuss whether an apology remains important in PR crisis work with Nicki Gibbs, chief strategy officer, Beehive Strategic Communication, and Dr. Kerry O’Grady, faculty director and associate professor, Georgetown University School of Continuing Education.
PR executives, collaborating with risk management, HR and other key functions, can play a critical role in identifying and recommending action to address external and internal threats (including toxic people). Unfortunately, organizations routinely underfund communication and related positions that can deliver intel that helps executives make better-informed decisions before they create a reputation crisis.
A strong reputation can be a useful defense during a PR crisis. But can we manage reputation? Yes, say ReputationDividend and Signal AI, among others. Yet, as you will see, reputation measurement is not without hurdles.
This edition’s dialogue looks at post-crisis debriefs. Our dialoguers April Margulies, founder, Trust Relations, and Thomas Graham, president, Crosswind Media & Public Relations, tell us it’s often a chore to schedule post-crisis sessions.