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Posts tagged “Crisis Communications”

Communicating to employees about Ebola

Some clients have asked for our view of what they should be communicating to their employees regarding the Ebola situation in the wake of the news of the nurse who traveled to and from Cleveland Hopkins Airport while apparently carrying the disease. Given that virtually all public health experts say there is an extremely remote chance of additional exposure or infections as a result of her visit here, our recommendation to clients is to take a reactive stance but be ready to refer employees to available online or other resources to answer their questions. If an organization instead wishes to proactively offer this information, we developed the below language to provide via email or employee intranet. For organizations that did have employees traveling on the…

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Infectious disease – coming to a hospital near you?

While the “ER” has been glamorized over the years by too many television dramas to count, the emergency room also is the front line of health care in both large cities and small towns. But a new plot twist has now arrived, in the form of lots of unwanted scrutiny for a Dallas-area hospital for its unasked-for role in the Ebola panic in the United States.

If we believe what’s on TV, maybe it’s not so hard to believe a patient who just arrived from West Africa with a fever and flu-like symptoms could actually be treated and released despite 24-hour media coverage of Ebola. Emergency rooms are chaotic and short-staffed, right? But now that a nurse who treated the now-deceased patient has tested positive for Ebola, what is clear is that some (and arguably many)…

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Policing the police

The world of law enforcement has gotten a lot of scrutiny following the shooting death of Michael Brown at the hands of a police officer in Ferguson, MO. Injustice was perceived, riots ensued, and the news media chose to present it all like footage from a Middle East war zone, not Middle America. It’s not even fair to say that the jury is still out on that matter because the jury hasn’t even been convened yet. But it’s fair to say that the actions of police, particularly when racial relations are overlaid, are already being questioned by the usual lot – activists, media and politicians – and this time, most of America is taking notice.

Clearly, the actions of the Ferguson police department following the teen’s shooting death didn’t help matters. Delaying the…

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Cleaning up with the Kardashians

As more companies, organizations and even government offices get into the social media act, we were given another reminder this week of why it’s important to have some safeguards in place to ensure your communications on social media are being handled thoughtfully and responsibly.

The Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Water learned this lesson the hard way when an intern posted a Tweet promoting the new “Kim Kardashian: Hollywood” app where people can join Kardashian on their own Hollywood red carpet “adventure.” Perhaps the intern meant to use his or her personal Twitter account rather than the agency’s account, as it’s easy to forget to toggle back and forth. In any event, while the Tweet was taken down after about three hours, the buzz was already off…

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Take the Crisis Stress Test: Are You Prepared?

Would your company’s reputation survive a major product failure or recall? A serious social media blunder? Major litigation? The death of an employee or customer?

A company’s ability to bounce back after a crisis often comes down to one key factor: how well it prepared before the crisis. Unfortunately, we see companies – too many companies – wait until after a cataclysmic event strikes to create a crisis communications manual, train top executives for speaking with media or set up a “dark” website.

Crisis preparedness is not necessarily a pleasant task, and it’s easy to put off for another day when there’s no looming crisis on the horizon. But, despite the reluctance or procrastination of some organizations, investing in crisis preparedness remains a critical…

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