Crisis & Reputation Management
Warren Buffet said it best: It takes 20 years to build a reputation, and five minutes to ruin it.
How You Respond Will Manage for Years to Come
Without proper preparation, public and private organizations of any size can be blindsided by a long list of possible crises: data breach, internal or external theft, fire, misuse of funds, employee harassment, product recalls, injury to employees or customers, etc.
The evidence is irrefutable. How an organization responds to a crisis can dramatically affect reputation, revenues and even share price. Thus, how an organization communicates to media and key audiences (employees, customers, citizens, shareholders, etc.) following a crisis situation is as important as how it responds, operationally.
Management must act quickly and prudently to: understand and communicate the facts, control the story, restore stakeholder confidence, protect the organization’s reputation and determine if, when and how to respond to requests for media comments.
Prepare Today for Tomorrow’s Crisis
No one can predict when a crisis will occur. But Sikich can work with organization leaders to determine areas of risk. Then, we prepare and maintain a crisis communications toolkit to ensure total preparedness, should a crisis strike.
Sikich will work with management to:
- Develop baseline messages
- Formulate a media and communications strategy
- Manage media relations (incoming inquiries and outreach)
- Train authorized spokespeople to speak to press
- Create a communications chain-of-command
- Draft copy for all platforms (social media, traditional media)
- Craft communication materials for internal and external audiences
- Conduct “fire drills” to test messages and our methods
As a multi-discipline, professional services firm, Sikich can also provide expertise in other areas should they be required during a crisis, including marketing, technology, forensics accounting and human resources.
Sikich’s PR team is adept at helping organizations prepare for crises and spring to action. Among those we’ve counselled:
- A juvenile products company using heavy metal-based fire retardants in its fabrics;
- A high-profile hotel dealing with the theft of one million credit card numbers;
- A large public pension missing its monthly payment to pensioners;
- Healthcare case management company linked to the wrongful death of a patient;
- A prominent private club handling a food-borne illness.