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How Talking About the Coronavirus as an Enemy Combatant Can Backfire

By Tabitha Moses, writing for The Conversation: We see this war reflected in the language that gets used by politicians, policymakers, journalists and healthcare workers. As the “invisible enemy” rolled in, entire economies halted as populations “sheltered in place.” We were told to “hunker down” for the long battle ahead and to “support our troops,” […]


Are You Prepared for Bad Press About One of Your Suppliers?

From Bridget Satinover Nichols, Hannah Stolze and Jon Kirchoff writing in the Harvard Business Review: It’s always been true that when companies behave badly, consumers react by spreading the word and sometimes boycotting. But our recent research found that negative news is also bad for business in a new way: Consumers react even when the bad news extends beyond […]


Learning to Dance With the Virus

Once again, we turn to Peter Sandman, one of the country’s foremost experts on the subject of risk communications.  In a recent interview, Dr. Sandman focused on how he thinks the U.S. public health profession mishandled and miscommunicated COVID-19 over the last few months, suggesting that health officials underreacted and left us unprepared. Then they […]


Six Things Every Attorney Should Do When Hiring And Managing A Communications Team

Nathan Miller, writing in Forbes, nailed it… As the CEO of a strategic communications firm in Los Angeles, I frequently work with lawyers. Whether my client is a high-profile individual in the middle of active litigation, a nonprofit engaged in a public education campaign or a large corporation getting ahead of a story — good […]


How Talking About the Coronavirus as an Enemy Combatant Can Backfire

Tabitha Moses, a doctoral candidate at Wayne State University, offers an interesting approach to communicating about COVID-19, with lessons for business leaders, too. We see this war reflected in the language that gets used by politicians, policymakers, journalists and healthcare workers. As the “invisible enemy” rolled in, entire economies halted as populations “sheltered in place.” […]


Muddled COVID-19 Messaging: Sometimes the Data Changed; Other Times – Masks, for Example – Your Dishonesty Caught Up with You

It shouldn’t be this hard.  The rules of risk and crisis communications are fairly simple: Tell the truth. Tell it all. Tell it first. Tell it fast. If the situation – or the science – is likely to change as more research is done, warn people ahead of time.  And keep repeating that warning. So […]


The Role of the Board Chair During a Crisis

Achim Schmitt, Gilber Probst and Michael Tushman, writing for JuanRudolfo.com, offer an insightful look at nonprofit governance… Experienced chairpersons know that their success depends on how they walk the tightrope of being too involved or too remote in the company’s strategy execution. Yet when a crisis such as COVID-19 hits and the CEO transforms into […]


Creating a Post-Pandemic Crisis Team

By Nora Jacobs, Hennes Communications Pre-COVID, few of our clients had ever experienced a crisis event with the potential to threaten the very existence of their organization.  Now, almost everyone we talk to has had first-hand experience managing disruptions in supplies, sales, finance, staffing, production, logistics, communications, marketing and technology.  Some organizations have emerged stronger […]


What Have We Learned from COVID-19?

As regular readers of this newsletter know, one of our regular correspondents is Peter M. Sandman, one of the world’s preeminent risk communications consultants.  Another way we describe him to our clients is that he is our go-to guy when it comes to risk communications. Recently, Dr. Sandman was interviewed by Impact, a publication of […]


Crisis Comms: Saying Nothing is the Worst Strategy

From Greg Friese, writing for PoliceOne.com… t has been more than a week since mass protests and riots erupted in dozens of cities in the U.S. in response to the death of George Floyd. In the days that followed, public safety leaders expressed their grief for Floyd, condemnation of the four former officers, and discussed their […]


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