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Layoffs in Age of Coronavirus: Delivering News That Will Make People Hate You

By Thom Fladung/Hennes Communications The numbers are grim and grow more discouraging by the day. Tens of thousands of people are losing their jobs as businesses re-evaluate, retrench and dig in to adjust to a nationwide coronavirus shutdown. Companies and organizations from General Electric to the National Rifle Association to your favorite restaurant down the […]


Houston Astros Sign Stealing Scandal In Extra Innings As Crisis Communication Errors Pile Up

By Thom Fladung/Hennes Communications The Houston Astros have now pulled off the rare Triple Crown of mishandled crisis communications: cover up; issue lame apologies; allow the bad news story to keep dripping out, day after day. This is not a coveted award. As even the casual baseball fan is acutely aware by now, the Astros […]


Strike Three, You’re Out: Houston Astros Cheat, Get Caught – And Then Ex-GM Boots Apology

By Thom Fladung/Hennes Communications The Houston Astros have joined the Chicago Black Sox and Pete Rose in the ranks of the most infamous scandals in Major League Baseball history, with the release of the MLB investigation that Houston front office staff, coaches and players worked to steal other teams’ pitching signs. Some context: Cheating has […]


Practicing Law In The Public Spotlight

Attorney Jack Bacevice joined the Cleveland firm Mansour Gavin after years as an Assistant Director of Law for the city of Cleveland. He’s handled numerous high-profile cases and is very familiar with practicing in the court of law while the court of public opinion intently watches. We’ll periodically feature a Q&A with Jack and Hennes […]


Don’t Hit ‘Send’ On Those Emails Before Calling Your Attorney

By Stephanie York/Hennes Communications Q. We have an emerging issue. When should we contact our attorney? A: When an organization is facing a crisis or an emerging issue that may evolve into a crisis, employees typically start talking about it – especially via email and texts. It’s easy to fire off messages to colleagues, managers […]


A Reputation Management Lesson: Even the Legends Must Be On Guard – Constantly

By Thom Fladung/Hennes Communications In 1982, Johnson & Johnson wrote the book on effective crisis response – literally. Chicago was in a state of panic. Within just a few days, seven people had dropped dead from cyanide poisoning. There was no explanation until investigators discovered the link: Tylenol. Someone had laced Chicago’s Tylenol supply with […]


Dark Side of Communications Turns Darker: Epstein, Twitter and Takeaways for Crisis Response

By Thom Fladung/Hennes Communications Even in this era, when the news barrage can be numbing, the report that Jeffrey Epstein had apparently hanged himself in jail and the immediate flurry of conspiracy theories took a run at qualifying as “shocking.” The least surprising element: Much of it started and played out on Twitter. In an […]


Want A Good Answer Amid A Crisis? Know The Question Before It’s Asked

By Thom Fladung/Hennes Communications The Q&A session is a staple of leadership, whether those questions come at you in employee meetings, community forums or in an interview with a journalist. It can be challenging in any setting. But doing a Q&A amid a crisis or serious issue your company or organization is facing ratchets up […]


Crisis Management May Mean Having to Say You’re Sorry

Q: My attorney says apologizing will be bad for future litigation – that apologizing means we are liable.  What do you think? A: We often find ourselves wrestling with our client’s attorneys over the phrase “I’m sorry.” Somehow, through the years, attorneys have come to define the phrase “I’m sorry” as meaning “I’m liable. I […]


Lessons From The Boeing Airline Crisis – And From The Crisis Management Industry’s Response

By Thom Fladung/Hennes Communications The crash of Ethiopian Airlines flight 302 and subsequent focus on the Boeing 737Max airliner brought with it the usual analysis and reaction from crisis communications consultants. Some of our crisis communications peers provided insight into how Boeing was dealing with its crisis. And some reaction, unfortunately, we found lacking in […]


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