I got an email today from a respected consulting organization that provided details on a recent ransomware attack that occurred over the July 4th weekend. The rather polished e-news alert was robust in its information, but there was a problem. It’s two weeks too late, and I’ve already gleaned all of the information in the article from other sources when the news first broke.… Read the rest
It’s one of the most effective and common ways activists win public debates these days. They change the language. Whatever words or terms you are using today, they will change the words tomorrow and the words you say today, will not only be obsolete, but they will likely be deemed to be offensive. That means when you are quoted from anything you’ve said historically, you are not only wrong (according to their fluid standards), but you will likely be framed as morally and ethically bad, or at least uncaring.… Read the rest
For as long as I can remember, one of the challenges as a communications counselor to clients has been a general mistrust some managers and a few lawyers have had when it comes to discretion and the potential for news media leaks of proprietary information.
More to the point, I’ve seen instances where managers and attorneys tend to hold on to vital information until that last possible moments before public disclosure because they fear that if they provide that information to the communications function too soon it will find its way into the news media before its time.… Read the rest
We have to get real on this. If you’re wondering why you’re seeing major corporations or brands take stances on highly charged social and political issues, it’s unlikely that they’ve all simultaneously discovered their socially aware or politically activist convictions that no one knew existed before.
The crisis and issues manager in me that’s been around for a few decades tells me something else.… Read the rest
One of the most basic tenets of crisis communications is to plan for the worst and hope for the best. With that in mind, through my work, I’ve been looking at the potential downsides of employer mandates of vaccination for the COVID virus.
If you read the news coverage, reports on vaccine effectiveness are generally positive, yet we are starting to see anecdotal stories of people who have had negative reactions which were more than temporary and that still remain.… Read the rest
One of the hot new terms you may see bandied about in 2021 is “disinformation.”
Its users see it as a label for calling out deceptive speech, oftentimes to discredit and sometimes to censor that speech. Critics see the increasing use of the term as a propagandist strategy used to marginalize anyone who might dissent from a general narrative.… Read the rest
When you ate your meals in a high chair, chances are your mother or someone else spoon-fed you for a time. That was because you were incapable of discerning what was good for you and what could harm you. Eventually you learned to feed yourself and distinguish between food and the spoon itself.
Imagine if today if your mother would decide that all of the information you receive would be spoon-fed to you.… Read the rest
There is a common assumption, particularly in public relations circles, that there is such a thing as a good apology. And by “good apology” they mean one that works on several levels. It is genuine. It satisfies the anger of your critics. It mends fences and brings a return of unity. Or, at the very least, it causes your critics to back off.… Read the rest
In our media training programs over the years, one of the key takeaways we try to leave with participants is that if you don’t know something, don’t fake it. Tell the journalist that you don’t have that information or that answer right now, but you will get back to them. And then make sure to close the loop.… Read the rest
If you’re like a lot of communicators right now, one of the challenges you may face is trying to encourage employees and others to take the COVID-19 vaccine when it’s available to them.
As the distribution of the vaccine continues and ramps up, your stakeholders will have the opportunity to get vaccinated, which can have a beneficial impact on them, their families and your organization.… Read the rest