There was perhaps a time when certain groups commanded respect and trust. But that’s changing.
So many are sliding down the ladder and competing for the bottom rungs. Nobody is moving up.
Politicians were always cutthroat and sought to impose their own philosophy. But at least they were perceived to be pursuing a common good. Today they are seen as petty, so enthralled with their own agendas that they will let the public suffer. Opinion polls rate Congress in single digits for effectiveness. Some even question its relevance.
As we endure another local election cycle, we wade through a blizzard of TV ads and brochures stuffing our mailboxes. We trust none of them to tell us the truth or to shed an honest light.
Even our generals, police and priests — long revered as beyond reproach — have been tarnished. We realize they are as prone to human frailties as the rest of us.
Journalists were once well regarded, but that is long past. Their heyday was after World War II. They were seen as ferreting out facts regardless of where they led, without bias. Watergate created a rush by the young and inexperienced into investigative journalism, but that quickly devolved into “advocacy journalism.” The result was a blurring of news and opinion, particularly on TV and digital outlets.
It’s not a pretty picture. With no one to respect, the bonds of society weaken and individuals turn inward. Often, they look to the fringe for sustenance and reassurance. The malaise grows worse almost daily.
This is the new world faced by Crisis & Reputation Management. Cynical. Skeptical. Quicker to suspect and condemn than to trust and believe. To be effective, those who do Crisis PR must be more subtle, more nuanced, more convincing.
“Because Reputation Is Your Most Valuable Asset”
Gillott Communications is a Los Angeles-based public relations firm that specializes in high-stakes Crisis & Reputation Management. If you don’t already subscribe, please sign up for our blog Insights on High-Stakes PR. You can reach Roger Gillott directly at 310-826-8696.