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Crisis Management Today

Hennes Communications
Crisis Communications  |  Crisis Management  |  Litigation Communications  |  Media Training
June 15, 2019
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Our Perspective

Grappling with social media
Grappling with Social Media
By Thom Fladung, managing partner, Hennes Communications  The First Amendment protects all of us from the government punishing or censoring speech. But it doesn’t apply to private organizations. 
Tactical and Operational Threat Assessment
By Bruce Hennes, CEO, Hennes Communications  Should you encounter a situation where that little voice in the back of your head says “Danger, Will Robinson. Danger !!,” we urge you to follow that little voice. 

In the News

6 Questions on the Power — and Limits — of Litigation Communications
Whether you’re first out of the gate with a media message, or responding to opposing counsel’s public statements, your message or response can be critical to ensuring your side is heard. This can be especially true for matters being tried in the Court of Law and the Court of Public Opinion.
How Best to Convey “Executive Presence” Non-Verbally
Written, tested and ready-to-go business continuity plans should just be part of doing business in today’s world. Here are some common mistakes we’ve seen in this effort.
How to Get Every Email Returned
So many emails. And too often, they are neither convincing nor entertaining. There are ways to break through the clutter, to get attention and even to bring people over to your side.

Not Everything is a Crisis

Most crises are unexpected and sudden - a traffic accident, explosion, fire, chemical leak, social media attack or criminal arrest.

While a crisis usually appears to be sudden, sometimes you should have seen it coming.  For example, activists who hate your product, lax enforcement of company policies and procedures, deferred maintenance on heavy equipment, or instability in your leadership ranks. 

More often than not, what you're probably facing is an issue, a situation that can and should have been foreseen. For instance, three months from now you know you're going to close a plant, discontinue a product, get a new board chair, acquire a company or announce a rate hike.  For another example, click here.

Whether it's a crisis or an issue, carefully crafted communications targeting the appropriate audience at the right time can go a long way toward mitigating the amount of reputational damage you experience and the work you need to do to restore confidence among your stakeholders.
Identifying an issue early gives you the added ability to craft a well-rounded strategic plan that not only identifies what you say, it enables you to carefully consider allies you might enlist, initiatives you might employ to blunt the effectiveness of your adversaries and other tactics designed to protect your market.

Are there threats looming on your horizon you should address now?  Let us help you create the communications to help you avoid them from evolving from issues you can manage to crises you can’t avoid.

While we sell "crisis" (hence our website name, ), the professionals at Hennes Communications understand the difference between crises and issues.  

And now, we hope you do, too.

Why Hennes?

Ask the Right Questions

Executives and attorneys across the country increasingly understand that since there are no real barriers to entry, every P.R. firm in the U.S. now offers “crisis communications.” 

Actually, they don’t. 

Crisis work requires a different – and often counterintuitive - skill set from the traditional practice of public relations.  As well, it’s also an art form where more often than not we’re helping clients figure out not just what to say, but what to do, which isn’t something learned from a book. 

Clients - and their attorneys - are beginning to understand that the Court of Public Opinion is arguably more important than the Court of Law, especially since 97% of all cases never actually make it to trial.  When selecting a firm purporting to offer "crisis services," ask these questions:
  • Exactly what percentage of the firm's practice is truly "crisis" work?  
  • Who is going to do the actual work?  Read the biographies and know who's going to do be working on your situation.  There's nothing wrong with being young and book-smart, but when it's a bet-the-farm situation, might you be better served by a senior-level professional who's handled hundreds of crisis situations?
  • Finally, remember this: you get what you pay for.
Members of our Crisis Management SWAT Team speak nearly 100 times a year, doing workshops, concurrent seminars and keynotes, sharing our expertise at corporate events, industry conferences, law firm and bar association meetings, For a full list of upcoming seminars, click here.

    Expert Witnesses for Online            Issues - Just a Click Away

The Court of Public Opinion is always in session on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and other websites where harsh reviews and caustic criticism carry the day.
Increasingly, the issues that start in this Court of Public Opinion are ending up in a Court of Law. At Hennes Communications, we have experts who understand online reputation management, online media coverage, the impact of negative online content, the effectiveness and cost of search suppression and more.
Looking for an expert witness who can help your client win on these thorny issues? Call Thom Fladung at Hennes Communications at 216-321-7774.


            Media Training

No one trains clients for high-stakes situations better than Hennes Communications. We can teach you how to communicate with power, mastering even the toughest interview, speech or presentation.  Call or email us today and ask us about crisis, media, spokesperson and presentation training/coaching for you, your top executives and managers.

Remember – it's usually not what you say, but how you say it.  Never again go into a media interview unprepared or go before a hostile audience uncoached.                   


Lawdragon Honors Hennes CEO

We are honored to announce that Bruce Hennes was recently named to the 2019 Lawdragon 100 Leading Consultants and Strategists, the definitive guide to the financiers, recruiters, marketing and communication gurus on whom the legal profession relies. According to Lawdragon, "These are 100 of the most trusted advisors to the legal profession."  You can see the entire Lawdragon list here.

Upcoming Speaking Events

6/19   Real Choice Ohio & Ohio School Boards Assoc. Conference (Columbus)
7/11   Lawyer - Pilots Bar Association
8/9     Orrville Safety Council
8/15   Ohio State Univ Leadership Academy
8/22   Commission on Economic Inclusion, Greater Cleveland Partnership
8/22   California Association of Sanitation Agencies
8/27   Leading Age (Columbus)
9/17    N.E. Ohio Regional Library System
9/17   Union of Marine Insurance
9/18   Wickens Herzer Panza
9/23   Mecklenburg County Bar (Charlotte)
View More Events
Hennes Communications. You have a situation. We have a strategy.
View More of Our Capabilities

Short Takes

Public Risk Managers Have Key Role in Handling Catastrophes

Cities are Not Tornado-Free Zones.  Map Your Safety Plan in Advance  The Plain Dealer

How to Speak Up When You Can’t Find the Words  CommPro

If a PR Crisis Happens to Your Company, Will You Know What to Do? 5 Tips.  Entrepreneur

Understand the 4 Components of Influence.  Harvard Business Review

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Hennes Communications
Crisis Communications  |  Crisis Management  |  Litigation Communications  |  Media Training
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