Crisis Management

University of Maryland Backs into a Decent Crisis Solution

November 1st, 2018 by

A sigh of relief emanated from College Park, Maryland, early on All Hallows’ Eve, when University of Maryland (UMD) president Wallace Loh announced his firing of head football coach DJ Durkin. It was one of the few correct notes sounded during a crisis that centered on the death of student and athlete Jordan McNair. The… Continued

Here’s Where Communicators are Hoping to Invest More Resources

October 24th, 2018 by

Money can’t buy you love and it can’t buy you passionate employees, but it surely can buy you more resources. When posed with the question of “What would you do with a 15% increase in your budget?,” executives participating in a recent PR News/Crisp leadership roundtable shared an interesting wish list that centered around the… Continued

USA Gymnastics’ Errors Form a Primer in Crisis Mismanagement

October 17th, 2018 by

With so many examples of how not to navigate crises in the news, you’d think more brands and organizations would know the basics of managing them. While many do, the outlier that fails to be transparent, communicate clearly with stakeholders and think deeply about the court of public opinion often produces a tone-deaf response. In turn… Continued

Poorly Written Blog Post Hides Google+ Data Breach

October 11th, 2018 by

That hissing sound you hear is the Edelman Trust Barometer dropping like a lead zeppelin. The main culprit this time is Google. Did you read its Oct. 8 blog post? In “Project Strobe: Protecting your data, improving our third-party APIs, and sunsetting consumer Google+,” the search engine leader says, among other things, it’s phasing out Google+.… Continued

Wells Fargo Still Struggling to Get It

September 27th, 2018 by

Coming up with a PR crisis management plan is not particularly difficult. The steps are well known: move promptly to accept responsibility (this might include someone losing her/his job) and be transparent about what occurred; apologize with humility; launch an internal investigation and release results; and enact a plan so that the mistake won’t happen… Continued

The PR Implications of Judge Kavanaugh’s Situation

September 17th, 2018 by

News broke this weekend when Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s heretofore-anonymous accuser, Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, came forward alleging Kavanaugh attempted to sexually assault her when the two were at a party in high school. This makes the likelihood that he’ll be approved for a lifetime appointment as a Supreme Court justice more precarious… Continued

The Big Rethink for Communicators Ready for Real Change

June 11th, 2018 by

You could feel the tension rising in the air, knocking out the aroma of coffee beans and herbal tea. Nancy had ordered a decaf-caf skim latte and the barista seemingly got it wrong. She stormed back to the counter and told the staff in no uncertain terms that her coffee order was wrong. The customer… Continued

Chart Porn and the PR Condition

April 23rd, 2018 by

When you bring hundreds of communicators together over two days for a conference on PR Measurement in Philadelphia, it gets interesting in a way the founding fathers never anticipated. “It’s like one big therapy session here,” noted measurement expert Katie Paine, in reference to the discourse among PR News Measurement Conference attendees of the many… Continued

YouTube Shooting Shows Brands Can Be Unwillingly Dragged Into a Crisis

April 4th, 2018 by

A few years back, the conventional wisdom was brands were better off staying as far away from social and political issues as possible. In many cases, it’s still the advice communicators and marketers advocate. For example,  in a survey of 360 chief marketing officers at for-profit companies released this week, fewer than 20% agreed it’s appropriate for… Continued

Jim Carrey Wants You to Dump Facebook. Crisis or Bad Day for Mark Zuckerberg?

February 7th, 2018 by

Kevin Elliott, U.S. director, risk & crisis communications practice at Hill+Knowlton Strategies, has a favorite aphorism about crisis management: “If you treat a bad day like a crisis, you’ll turn it into one. And if you treat a crisis like a bad day, you’ll make it worse.” So should Mark Zuckerberg and company treat comedian… Continued