Next Meeting: Wednesday, November 15

October 19, 2017  |  Meeting Info

NAPRCA’s next meeting will be Wednesday, November 15. We hope to see you there. More details coming soon! In the meantime, here’s a recap of some lessons learned from yesterday’s October meeting. Thank you again to our panel for their excellent insight about dealing with tough situations from a PR perspective.

The Panel
  • Megan Cotton Gully, Public Affairs Apecialist for the U.S. Army Materiel Command
  • Burr Ingram, Vice President-Communications & Marketing for Huntsville Hospital
  • Robert Lane, President/CEO of Carleton PR/LawCall
  • Ethics are personal and organizational. Ideally your personal values should match your organization’s. It certainly makes things a little simpler if they do!
  • Sometimes when several stakeholders are involved, you have to develop a strategy or response that satisfies the values of all involved as much as possible. Also, finding agreement among multiple (reliable) parties can also shine a light on the best choice. (Example: In the military, if legal reps and chaplains agree with the PR team’s decision about how to handle a sensitive situation, that’s a good sign.)
  • Legal regulations can sometimes make the ethical choices more obvious. (Example: patient privacy laws in healthcare)
  • Decide if you’re going to offer the best PR representation (to your client or organization) no matter what or is there a point where you’re going to walk away?
  • Know where you stand. Decide where the line is that you won’t cross and stick to it.
  • Speak up when you can correct inaccuracies. But beware of situations where responding to negative comments or statements you know to be false (on social media) will only bring them to the light and make them more visible.
  • Don’t lie because it’s unethical but also because it won’t work.
  • Don’t answer questions that you aren’t asked.
  • Social media is a tremendous opportunity but you have to be present and prepared to respond. You’re opening the door for every opinion (good/bad, reliable/unreliable).
  • It’s not a bad thing to recruit positive reviews. If someone has a good experience actively encourage them to share their comments.
  • Establish a track record of good decision making. Build trust with your organization so that you get a seat at the table and can handle potential problems before they happen.
  • Be as involved as you can from the beginning so you don’t just end up putting out fires on the back end.
  • Imagine the worst case scenario for your organization and then think about how you would handle it.
  • Be prepared. Know what the tough questions will be and how to answer them.
  • No one will believe you if you’re not upfront and honest from the start. Maintain a reputation for good ethical decision making.

Please join us for our final meeting of 2017 on Wednesday, November 15 at noon at Redstone Federal Credit Union on Wynn Drive. More details coming soon!

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