Inside Our May Crisis Issue

May 2021
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Crisis management is the theme of our May issue, in which you’ll find an array of timely stories on the topic.

Jon Goldberg explores safeguarding reputation in this age of worker activism. 

As he writes: “With employees of all levels and backgrounds becoming more politically and socially engaged, the best way for companies to stay out of the public spotlight… is to prepare for the risks that such activism entails, to establish and consistently apply well-thought-out policies and to use sound legal and reputation counsel to enforce those guidelines.”

In another piece tied into current events, Helio Fred Garcia, who will be leading PRSA’s Crisis Communication Virtual Master Class in July, discusses the importance of empathy from leadership in a post-pandemic world.

“A foundational principle of any organization’s crisis response is that indifference to the situation is toxic,” Garcia writes. “Leaders must show they care. This was true before COVID-19 and it will become even more essential as we recover from the pandemic, which has been the most disruptive crisis most of us have ever faced.”

In addition, we provide some lessons from the CDC response to COVID-19, the deadly winter storm and catastrophic power outages in Texas this past February, and the 2020 hurricane season in Florida. Also look for how-to pieces on creating an inclusive crisis management plan and working with internal audiences within the public sector.

Also, frequent contributors Monique Farmer, APR, Bridget Castellini, Noelle Fox, APR, and Celia Willis offer insights on the strategic-planning process, from improving virtual sessions to building relationships.

We hope that you find this issue helpful to your daily work. We’ll be back with our June-July edition this summer.

Celebrating AAPI heritage

May marks Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month. Since 1979, May has been a dedicated time to celebrate Asian Americans and Pacific Islander Americans in the United States. However, it wasn’t until 1992 that May was officially designated to honor this heritage.

This month, look for blog posts on PRsay and a Diverse Dialogue session on May 19 from 5 to 6 p.m. titled “Beyond the Hashtags: How PR/Comms Pros Can Drive Unity.” Please follow @PRSA for updates.

Finding additional content online

As a reminder, you can find more articles and commentary on topics of interest throughout the month on our blog, PRsay.

Recent topics include considerations that companies and organizations need to take before speaking out on high-profile political and social issues. In this tumultuous past year, stakeholders want to know where companies and CEOs stand. We asked 14 communicators for their thoughts on the topic.

In a heartfelt post in the midst of the increase in Asian American hate crimes nationwide, Laarni Rosca Dacanay shares her story of growing up as part of the AAPI community. “[W]e must continue to build coalition, to build unity, to build solidarity — because it will take our collective power to fight the hate, racism, xenophobia and the prejudice. It will take our visibility and our voices to overcome,” she wrote.

Recognizing an APR recipient

In a full-page ad in our April issue, we honored the distinguished professionals who earned their Accreditation in Public Relations during 2020 and early 2021. 

Due to a clerical error, we missed a name on the list. Congratulations to Stacy L. Peterson, APR, communications director for the Arkansas Treasurer of State, who became Accredited in November! 

Return to Current Issue Crisis Management: Expecting the Unexpected | May 2021
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