Archive for the ‘Day in the Life’ Category

When Your Employees Go Rogue – How employees can do more damage than your competition

Monday, May 28th, 2018

Lisa Libin, Vice President

An employee can be a company’s strongest asset.  However, when an employee goes “rogue” – going against company policies and values, a PR crisis can ensue, reflecting and ultimately damaging a company’s brand.

From Starbucks employees choosing to have some loitering customers arrested to Tim Horton’s franchisees publicly lashing out over cuts to their benefits – although these issues are caused by rogue employees – it is still the responsibility of the brand to respond and clean up the mess.

What can a brand or company do when its reputation is tarnished by others? Below are some response recommendations for brands to follow when handling a PR issue not of their doing:

 

  1. Move quickly

With the power of social media, an incident is likely to go public, and potentially viral, like rapid fire. Gone are the days of having the luxury of sitting around a boardroom table for days to discuss a response – companies need to respond now. And fast. However, before distributing a response, ensure you are also following recommendation #2:

 

  1. Don’t be generic

Too often, companies are quick to respond with a generic statement – which can often cause additional frustration among consumers and the public who are looking for a more specific response or a call to action. Create a response that speaks to the problem – something as simple as “this isn’t acceptable, we are looking into it” can at least show the public you are taking the issue seriously.

 

  1. Tailor your reaction to the incident

There is no formulaic approach to a PR incident. Each crisis requires its own tailored response and outside counsel can often assist with creating a crisis communications path specific to the incident at hand.

 

  1. Go above and beyond when you can

This lesson can go all the way back to the Tylenol incident of the 1980’s where Johnson & Johnson recalled all of its products from the shelves, not just Tylenol products. An expensive business decision? Absolutely. But what it showed consumers is that Johnson & Johnson was willing to put customer safety ahead of profit margins to ensure all products were safe. When a brand goes beyond the simple response to an issue, it shows its audience that it truly cares and values their business.

 

While a number of recent incidents in the media have involved only one or two employees who made questionable or downright wrong decisions, it is always important to remember that all employees are representatives of the brand and it is important for the organization to act swiftly but act smartly.

 

 

Lisa Libin is Vice President at Brookline Public Relations. Lisa loves a good crisis (as long as it’s not a personal one!) and has vast experience in issues management and brand reputation issues, working with local and global communications teams to handle ongoing and current industry issues.

The Brilliance in Brookline

Friday, December 4th, 2015

Kate Barton, Guest Blogger

 

What is public relations? That’s the big question, especially for students. It’s hard to really know without experiencing it first-hand.

This past month I was given an incredible opportunity that not many people get – the chance to experience what my future career might be like in advance of graduating and joining the workforce. The team at Brookline Public Relations was kind enough to invite me to take part in a day-in-the-life experience at their agency. Both nervous and excited, I couldn’t wait to see what the day would bring.

My morning began with a tour of the beautiful Brookline office and introductions to each of the 13 Brookliners on staff. I then had the opportunity to sit down and get to know Assistant Account Specialist and public relations extraordinaire, Dakota Sandquist. Within minutes, I had a pretty clear picture of what life was like at the agency and as the day progressed, I was able to see how the magic was made at Brookline.

The most intriguing and also intimidating part of my day was sitting in on Brookline’s weekly staff meeting, or “Traffic” as they call it. The full team convened to swap updates on all of their client accounts, discuss marketing and social media strategies for the agency, and even go over CP style (so yes students, it matters!). Quick to volunteer to help one another with anything and able to switch gears between accounts at the drop of a hat, the Brookline team showed me what an efficient and passionate public relations team looks like – a real force to be reckoned with!

Following Traffic, a few members of the team took me out to lunch. This was a great opportunity for me to pick their brains on public relations and agency life. I even got insight into which accounts were closest to them, as well as their day-to-day lives at Brookline. Both professionals, Ashlee Smith and Douglas Self, were very open to any and all questions I had, and also had some great insights into the world of public relations.

I was also lucky enough to get some one-on-one time with a number of other team members throughout the day, including Brookline’s two interns, Shae Pollock and Pauline Tapuska, who I learned are both recent graduates of the Public Relations program at Mount Royal University. Both Shae and Pauline were able to offer me thoughtful insight into what it’s like transitioning from school to a career – and it just goes to show that while the real world of PR may seem daunting, it is entirely possible for each of us to find success!

Walking out of Brookline, I allowed the day to sink in. It was an incredible experience and I felt almost spoiled to have had this as my first glimpse into the industry. For me, the most valuable part of this experience was not only seeing public relations executed with excellence, but also with camaraderie and passion – something Brookline’s dedicated team has no shortage of.

 

Kate Barton

– Kate Barton is a third-year Public Relations student at Mount Royal University.