Saturday, August 06, 2011

Another Stop Everything and Read Link

A bonus story from PRSA by Curtis Olsen (I'm guessing, no relation to Jimmy) on Friday brings home the changing nature of public relations in a digital age.

Two big takeaway quotes:

Understand that you’ve already lost control — You cannot control the Internet, but you can manage it. Social media wisdom begins with the recognition that any one of your employees (or your clients’ employees) might expose you to risk.

That one meets with a TON of internal resistance regardless of organization. No, simply spin it, tell our story, build (or rebuild) our brand, say only what we have to say, say nothing about what really happened. Well, good luck with that when you move on to part B of the two big notes.

Convince your management that they’re exposed — If your CEO or client leadership fails to understand this new reality, your leaders will eventually end up in a damaging post or headline. You need to know the intimate business details of a CEO’s career and private life if you expect to protect them. You must strive to become the ultimate insider for your company or client so that you can effectively defend their reputation.

The second one is always the hardest to achieve. I know that one from personal experience, both on how when you are on the inside you can help direct a crisis into a better outcome and watching in sheer horror from the sidelines as principals refuse to address situations or let others in to help, and it devolves into a fiesta of recriminations.

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