Food safety problems can be a recipe for disaster in the restaurant industry. Just ask Chipotle Mexican Grill.
In the span of two months beginning in October, the company has dealt with an outbreak of E. coli infections that sickened 52 people in nine states and forced the company to temporarily close some locations along with reports earlier this month that up to 140 people fell ill from norovirus linked to a Chipotle restaurant in Boston.
The situation was summed up best by US News & World Report: “For a company founded on fresh ingredients and locally sourced food, it was a... ⇢ read more
Our future is coming together.
As a profession, public relations will redefine itself by casting off the label of “public relations.” Our future is in earning the mantle of strategic counselor and providing leaders with creative solutions to their problems. Clients don’t care what the marketing mix is—and neither should we.
The lines between digital, social media, advertising and public relations are more blurred (and unnecessary) than ever before. Most strategic communication efforts will not require every channel or discipline, but if we fail to consider each one, we run the risk of missed opportunities.
Coming together in this way creates a more... ⇢ read more
In the weeks following the Germanwings Flight 9525 crash, Lufthansa Group and its Chief Executive Carsten Spohr faced tremendous pressure as they crafted messaging for customers, employees, investors and the general public. PR practitioners (myself included) have closely observed the company’s response strategy unfold. One of the biggest twists came in late March, when Lufthansa said it knew of the pilot’s depression diagnosis, but did not prevent him from working.
The recent history of flight disasters underscores the critical need for airlines to deploy swift and decisive crisis communication, but not at the expense of accuracy.
My evaluation of Lufthansa’s crisis response aligns most... ⇢ read more
By Jennifer Evans
I live and work in Houston, Texas. Houston is known for many things, but the oil & gas industry remains a driving business here. Consequently, we see indicators of economic dips due to oil prices before other U.S. markets. While I don’t want to discourage anyone unduly, we are seeing some of those signs in the U.S. and in Texas right now. Public Relations practitioners – internal as well as agency leaders – should pay attention and prepare to help clients/employers adapt. After all, part of the job is therapy, right? Here are a few handy tips... ⇢ read more
By Barb Harris & Sharon Kreher, teamworks communication management
There’s always been an appropriate tension between what nonprofit agencies spend on their mission and what they spend on administration. And certainly, that’s a ratio one should consider in evaluating the effectiveness and efficiency of a charity. But, the tendency to adhere too rigidly to the “spend as little as you can on admin” often backfires. As any for-profit business understands, sometimes you have to invest dollars in order to generate more funds. That means expenditures in facilities, staff, capacity, advertising, and yes, public relations. While nonprofits don’t think in terms of... ⇢ read more
I love teachers. Anyone who follows me on Facebook knows my daughter teaches music. She, and most of her colleagues do a great job.
But this is a PR Blog, and hence, it is with a heavy heart I read this article in the Omaha World-Herald. So, I’m taking this opportunity to remind my clients, my colleagues and my followers it is better to confess to the crime (mistake, if you prefer) than to cover it up.
I’ll never forget the wise words of a Sunday school teacher and High School counselor, who told us, “It is okay to say you are... ⇢ read more
By Brian Chandler, Commonwealth PR
I remember this client’s crisis like it was yesterday.
We were in the middle of a meeting at their office when the CEO was immediately ushered out of the room with no explanation. A few minutes later, I was also summoned out of the room, leaving everyone confused and unsure whether to continue the meeting or call it quits.
What happened next involved me setting up shop in someone else’s office, using their computer, paper and even some supplies, to handle a crisis situation that involved a death. In respect for the family and my client, I will... ⇢ read more
It could have and should have been handled better. That’s what I think most of us in the PR profession and millions of TV viewers thought when we watched the tearful departure of anchor Ann Curry from the TODAY show on June 28. As someone who works with a great team to help companies and individuals prepare for and deal with a variety of crisis situations, difficult announcements and more, I found it almost unthinkable that NBC would not have had a well-thought out plan in place to deal with Ms. Curry’s departure should word leak out, which... ⇢ read more
When I worked in corporate America, I had many sleepless nights waiting to see the first headlines of the day as my employer was often the subject of less-than-flattering news. By the time I got to the office, senior executives were running around like their head was on fire - like that would be helpful. Sadly, managing the crisis du jour often was determined by what the media said or didn't say on the morning news, which became exhausting. After a few of these, I finally realized what a bad crisis management strategy that was and changed my ways.
Today's crisis... ⇢ read more
By Susan Hart, Hart PR
When Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords woke up on a Saturday morning in January, I'm confident it didn't occur to her, her staff, area law
enforcement and local media that she and others would be fighting for their lives in a matter of hours, with some losing that battle. The tragic event prompted us to question many things, and for public relations professionals, one question should be whether or not our crisis management plans are current.
What kind of crisis communications plan does your organization and/or clients have? This isn't a "yes" or "no" question - it's a question of
depth... ⇢ read more
By Nancy Tamosaitis-Thompson, Vorticom, Inc.
As Published in BrandWeek
Has your email or Twitter account been hijacked? Today I received an email on my business email account from my long term AOL address that invited me to “solve my erectile dysfunction problem now!” A second email advised me to click on a link to purchase a product that would “flush my body of all toxins in less than two hours.” I went into my sent box on AOL and found that an alternate AOL reality was sending hundreds of e-mails to trusted friends and associates touting the benefits of sexual health, weight... ⇢ read more