Managing A Public Relations Crisis.

Essay by eldonfieldsUniversity, Bachelor'sA, December 2005

download word file, 2 pages 1.0

This paper will review how to manage a crisis using public relations. The company, American Wattage Corporation, is from the simulation located on the University of Phoenix website for aiding in the education of the Marketing 438 class.

Proactive planning is when someone can predict what may be approaching and plan accordingly. An example in public relations would be the public relations team predicting different ways the publics may react to a new product or a negative action from the company. The team would then formulate several plans depending upon the potential reactions of the publics or the actions of the company. In the case of The American Wattage Corporation, the public relation team needed a proactive plan to deal with the potential negative impact the wind turbines could have on various publics.

Feedback to the public relations team of American Wattage Corporation could be in the form of public surveys, web site polls, and telephone surveys.

An ineffective way to address this issue would be for the company to do nothing. This would allow for the publics to fill in the blanks on their own. In the absence of a voice, the public will fill in the blanks themselves. This would be a poor option for AWC.

A better solution for the company would be for a quick statement from the company, stating the honest facts in the situation, what the company is doing about the situation, and when the company will have further updates of the situation. By doing so, the company shows it cares and is concerned about the public.

A company should always have a proactive crisis management plan. This plan should include the following elements: be prepared, be available, and be credible (The Practice of Public Relations, Ninth Edition, by Fraser P. Seitel. Published by Prentice-Hall. Copyright & copy; 2004 by Pearson Education, Inc.). A crisis management plan should also include whom will speak for the company, who to go to for information, and what information will be made available. A company would utilize a reactive crisis management plan, when the company did not have a proactive plan. The role of public relations in this situation would be for the team to (1) terminate the crisis quickly, (2) limit the damage, and (3) restore credibility. These rolls are similar to the proactive plan.

A good company will have a plan in place for when a crisis strikes. Whether the crisis is an act of God or human error, a company will benefit from a plan. In the event a company does not have a plan the company should be honest and communicate openly to the publics. By doing so, a company should be able to come out of the crisis with a favorable response from its publics.