TSB CEO demonstrates the value of leadership in crisis management

Given our reliance on technology these days, it’s no surprise that IT failure should be a high priority for crisis management planning. Despite this, the crisis communication response of many organisations to a technology problem is often too slow, too corporate and too infrequent. That’s why I was so impressed with TSB’s reaction to IT […]

Crisis management: The art of listening

Effective communication in a crisis isn’t about what you say – it’s also about how you listen. Gut instinct may be to hunker down in the ‘war room’ and get on with managing the incident but shutting yourself off from the outside world can result in strategies that fail to take account of public opinion […]

Why your crisis media spokesperson must be the genuine article

  It’s part of my job to analyse how the media and companies deal with crises. Whenever I am researching major incidents I never lose sight of the fact that real people have been affected. Sadly, I think this human reaction to tragic events isn’t always evident in the corporate world’s media response.  Just take […]

Wonga banks on pro-active issues management to protect its reputation

Last week we suggested how businesses can take a more pro-active approach to issues management when faced with challenges such as zero hours contracts (click here to see our blog post). So I was fascinated to see how Wonga, the short term cash loan company, has decided on a pro-active approach to the reputational issues […]

From hero to zero: the next issues management test?

The use of zero-hours contracts could be the next big issues management challenge for UK businesses after last year’s tax avoidance scandal.  It certainly bears some of the same hallmarks, with one company already ‘outed’ (in this case Sports Direct) and Hovis hitting the headlines when workers went on strike to protest about the issue. […]

“Enjoy your lunch” – Pope Francis shows CEOs how it’s done: guest blog post from Peter Heath

It seems the Vatican has a media rock star on its hands. Pope Francis is, from the earliest moments of his Papacy, displaying communication skills the Catholic Church has long been in dire need of. His early teachings extend way beyond the theological. As CEO of one of the most traditional, inflexible and hide-bound institutions […]

Why crisis media training is about more than just the message

As the horsemeat saga rumbles on, it is becoming clearer and clearer which organisations invested in crisis management training beforehand…and which didn’t.  This manifests itself most obviously in the performance of company spokesperson in their television and radio interviews. I was asked by The Grocer to assess the crisis communication efforts of the big supermarkets […]

Supermarkets set the standard in horsemeat crisis communication

It’s easy to be critical of organisations’ attempts at crisis communication when you’re observing from the outside.  So I’m pleased to be able to give two supermarkets a pat on the back for their crisis management response to the recent horsemeat issue, having previously given Findus a rather harder time. It’s clear to me that […]

Crisis planning: shutting the stable door before the horse has bolted

I landed back in the UK this morning fresh from a two day crisis management workshop with a client in South Africa.  The purpose of the workshop was to ensure that they would be ready to protect the business and its reputation in the event of an incident.  They recognised that there’s simply no time […]

Perception is Everything

I recently got into a discussion with a family member who’s worked in hospitals for some 20+ years that made me realize the world outside of our circle of crisis managers still has little idea of the importance of controlling perception as a means of crisis management. In her workplace, every single employee, from paediatricians […]