“Never lose focus, or you lose control. Lose control, and you lose.”
~ The ultimate adage of Crisis & Reputation Management
In Catholic middle school, a nun scolded the basketball coach, “You’re winning by too much. Let the other side score some points so they won’t feel bad.”
Years later, popular educational mantra shifted from competition to cooperation. Everybody got a ribbon for participating, no matter how poorly they performed. Everybody felt warm and fuzzy.
But that concept never really fit in the real world. Without the competitive edge, results slip.
- “Missed it by that much!” That one-liner was always good for laugh for Agent 86 in Mel Brooks’ TV spy parody Get Smart in the late 1960s. It doesn’t work for a CFO explaining to investors why earnings were below expectations.
- “We tried our best, but….” This is the last thing a CEO wants to tell his Board when the company’s newest gee-whiz gadget or fashion apparel line flops after he assured them it would be a trend-setter and generate blockbuster sales.
- “There’s been a little problem in accounting.” Not the way anyone wants to begin a conversation, especially if you need to explain how someone has been skimming money and shifting it to their offshore banks.
This is time for serious finesse. Those in the hot seat need to reassure that a one-time financial slip doesn’t define the future, that the next product in the pipeline has great prospects, that the missing funds aren’t material but every avenue is being pursued to recover them.
To set the tone, they turn to those who do it for a living — to Crisis & Reputation Management. And they demand nothing less than success. You deliver it. Or the next person will.
That’s why winning isn’t an option. It’s the only option.
“Because Reputation Is Your Most Valuable Asset”
Gillott Communications is a Strategic PR firm. We’re Fixers. Crisis & Reputation Management. Litigation. Media Relations. Crisis Prep. More than half a century of expertise working with clients to resolve issues both in and outside the media’s glare — in their professional and personal lives.
If you don’t already subscribe, please sign up for our blog, Insights on High-Stakes PR.
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.”