Parents of newborns share a gloriously painful experience with Crisis PR people: Exhaustion.
Neither are masters of their daily lives. They rest when they find the time. For new parents, the experience is measured in weeks. For Crisis PR, it’s a relentless way of life.
Thankfully, the two rarely occur simultaneously. New parents are usually young. Those at the top of their game in Crisis & Reputation Management are usually gray-hairs, because maturity and insight most often come with age.
People in other businesses have described how they turn off their phones when they leave the office and don’t take business calls or reply to emails in the evening or on weekends. It’s an alien concept.
In Crisis PR, clients are no respecters of clocks or calendars. You’re their counselor for their darkest secrets, and you’re expected to be available every moment of every day. They’re as likely to demand attention on weekends, at night and in the wee hours as they are between 9 and 5 Monday through Friday.
One colleague is so devoted he carries two smart phones, each running on a different carrier in case one has a service interruption. He will never be unreachable.
There’s a quid pro quo. Yes, Crisis PR people surrender their private lives. But clients become dependent — increasingly so with every desperate call. That makes the bond stronger and more lasting.
Case in point: A businessman was overwhelmed by a series of threats, any of which could have been fatal. A Crisis PR person, working closely with the client’s lawyer, talked him off the ledge and made the issues evaporate. Then a personal matter arose, and the client needed someone to guide him through the shoals. He turned to the Crisis PR person for his calmness and clarity.
That, perhaps, is the highest praise of all.
“Because Reputation Is Your Most Valuable Asset”
Gillott Communications is a Strategic PR firm. We’re Fixers. Crisis & Reputation Management. Litigation. Media Relations. Crisis Preparation & Training. You can reach Roger Gillott directly at 310-826-8696.
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For a deeper glimpse into our world, see our book on Amazon, “A Lawyer’s Guide to Crisis PR: Protecting Your Clients In & From the Media.”
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