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Crisis Management Today

Hennes Communications
Crisis Communications  |  Crisis Management  |  Litigation Communications  |  Media Training
January 15, 2022
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Our Perspective

Stop Bad Zoom Behavior
Put Down The Pastrami: Zoom Performance Tips Two Years On
By Howard Fencl, Hennes Communications
We’re more than two years into Zoom as our proxy conference room and we’re seeing a disturbing uptick of on-camera antics that would have been red-faced embarrassing in the button-down face-to-face business meetings of olden times.  No matter the video platform, there’s some truly awful virtual behavior going on out there.
Press Conference
Why Should a Government Agency Reach Out To a Crisis Communications Firm?
By Stephanie York, Hennes Communications
A priority for any government agency is to make certain it communicates truthfully, transparently, quickly and effectively, using traditional media, social media, the agency’s website and any other methodologies at its disposal.  The pressure to communicate effectively increases when a serious issue or crisis arises. That’s when stakeholders most need correct and timely information.  That’s also when damaging misinformation and rumors are more likely to spread.

Featured Guest Columnist

To Rebuild Trust, CDC Should Consider Going Back to What Used to Work Well: Subject Matter Experts Explaining Complexities Candidly for As Long As It Takes
By Dr. Peter Sandman
CDC’s loss of trust is real. It’s no longer just anti-vaxxers and Trump supporters who mistrust the agency. People who are worried about Omicron and determined to do the right thing are public health’s “home team” – and they too are losing trust in the agency.  CDC’s single biggest communication failing among many: the failure to provide a steady stream of expert explanation to journalists – to all journalists, from experienced public health reporters who ask about the implications of the latest research to novice general assignment reporters who need help getting the basics right.

In the News

Bill Belichick
Belichick Means Never Having to Say You’re Sorry
My friends, there are certain things you can count on with football. You know that snow makes any game better. So does grilled sausage and a cold beer. You know there will be a moment while watching any Jacksonville Jaguars contest when you will say to yourself, “What am I doing with my life?”  To those I’ll add another: You know Bill Belichick does not apologize to the media.  And yet it happened,
News & Mass Media
HuffPost Bureau Chief Talks Exclusives, Do’s and Don’t’s of Pitching
How can you get your executive or organization quoted in a national media outlet? It’s a defining question for PR pros at companies and institutions of all sizes. One way is pitching a story about something an executive or company is doing locally that may have national implications, says Amanda Terkel, Washington bureau chief at HuffPost.
Quotation Marks
How Well Are You Prepared?
No matter how meticulously prepared you are, you should be prepared for this to happen.
The Six Essential Rules for Lawyers Dealing with Reporters
Whether reporters are calling about a crisis or just to tap your expertise, here are the six things all lawyers should know before talking to the press. An unanswered or botched media call can be a nightmare, or at the very least a lost opportunity for advocacy for both client and lawyer.
It's a Wonderful Life
The Mournful Heart of It’s a Wonderful Life
Though the title of this newsletter is Crisis Management Today, we often examine communications from a wide variety of angles.  Movies are, of course, amongst the most powerful of mediums.  Some are worth a single view.  Others are worth seeing twice or thrice.  A select few, multiple times.  But some deserve a category of their own.  It’s a Wonderful Life is one.  Here’s why.
Projecting Leadership Presence in a Teleconference
Whenever you are speaking to an audience (whether customers, clients or colleagues), people won’t only be evaluating your words, they will be “reading” your voice. Listeners will be searching for clues to possible hidden agendas, concealed meanings, disguised emotions, undue stress – anything, in short, that will help them determine if they can rely on what you're telling them.


In Case You Missed It
Mergers, Acquisitions and Management Transitions: Using Crisis Communications Principles to Achieve Better Outcomes

Cats Sleeping With Dogs: How Lawyers and Crisis Communicators Can Work Together

PR Firms vs. Crisis Firms.  Is There a Difference?  Does It Really Matter?

Lessons in Law Firm Reputation Management: How Firm Leaders Should Prepare for Public Scrutiny When Representing Political Clients

Searchable Archive of Crisis Management and Crisis Communications Articles from Hennes Communications
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Attention School Board Members,
Superintendents & Attorneys

The Ohio School Boards Association (OSBA) and the Arizona School Boards Association (ASBA) have each entered into a strategic partnership with Hennes Communications to provide crisis management and communications services to public school systems throughout the States of Ohio and Arizona facing sudden challenges to their organizations’ reputations and operations. With this partnership, OSBA and ASBA member school leaders have access 365 days a year to expert crisis communications professionals.

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, before a hostile audience uncoached or into any situation where it's important for you to project executive presence.

As the coronavirus situation begins to abate, we now offer this training in-person on a select basis or via Zoom and other video platforms.  Please call 216-321-7774 for details.



Our Upcoming Speaking Events

1/5      Colorado State Bar Association/
            Denver Bar Association
1/14     OH State Bar Leadership Academy
1/19     Society of Financial Services Prof's
2/5       Cleveland Neighborhood Leadership
            Development Program

2/17     Cleveland CDC Leadership
            Development Program

2/28     Case Western Reserve University
            Law School

  Thom Fladung, Bruce Hennes & Stephanie York
3/18     American Bar Association - BLI
4/9      Gov't. Academy Conference/OSU
4/20     Ashland Area Safety Council
5/23     Winding River Managing Partner
            Boot Camp

10/24   Winding River Managing Partner
             Boot Camp

Crisis Leadership
The skill set that got you into your current leadership position
isn't the skill set you will need when it hits the fan.

It's a simple fact:

Controversies today are tried in the Court of Public Opinion
more often than the Court of Law.
News now breaks first on social media, with traditional media sweeping Twitter, Facebook and YouTube for leads. Whether your organization is immersed in crisis or dealing with a hot-button issue, your news can quickly “go viral.” Since it takes a lifetime to build a reputation and only a few seconds to destroy one, “managing the message” is a necessary skill set for executives, attorneys and public officials in virtually every business sector.  

Our fast-paced seminars, delivered by veteran crisis management and communications specialists Bruce Hennes, Thom Fladung and Stephanie York, all focus on highly strategic approaches to communicating during a wide variety of situations, enabling you to serve the needs of your stakeholders, move your message forward or mount a defense against a sudden onslaught from traditional or social media.  Many of our seminars also address "non-crisis" situations (e.g. management changes, mergers & acquisitions, program expansions, presenting with executive presence and creating relationships with members of the media).

If you'd like to bring us in to speak at a conference or to your organization, virtually or in-person, as a keynote, for your practice group, for a section luncheon, as a value-add for your existing clients or as a new business development event, please give us a call at 216-321-7774 or drop us a line at  For a select list of previous seminar sponsors, click here.
Attorney Seminars
  • Crisis Management & Crisis Communications for Attorneys & Their Clients
  • Crisis Communications and Social Media for Attorneys & Public Officials
  • Winning on Social Media: Crisis Management in an Echo Chamber
  • Social Media and the Courts: A New Frontier
  • Getting to the Truth: How to Detect Fake News
  • Tools, Tips & Tactics - Responding to Sensationalized Journalism
Education Seminars
  • Crisis Management & Crisis Communications for Education Officials & Their Attorneys
  • Crisis Communications and Your School in the Social Media Era
  • Crisis Communications For Educators Amid a Pandemic of Crises
  • A Public Schools Social Media Primer: Risks, Rewards & Recognizing Fake News 
Elder Care & Health Care Seminars
  • Crisis Management & Crisis Communications for Health Care Executives & Attorneys
  • Crisis Communications For Health Care Executives Amid a Pandemic of Crises
  • Mergers, Acquisitions & Management Transitions: Using Crisis Communications Principles to Achieve Better Outcomes
Our "signature seminar," Crisis Management & Crisis Communications, can easily be crafted to be relevant to the specific needs of your organization or industry.  For details, please give us a call at the number above.

NOTE:  All of the seminars listed above are typically one-hour long, though some of them lend themselves to a 90-minute or two-hour format.  We also offer a 4-hour seminar that includes "extreme" crisis communications, aimed at elected officials, police and fire chiefs, often done in partnership with local emergency management agencies and boards of health.
The Hennes Communications Team
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