HSBC: Crisis management is broken and there are no quick fixes

Credible and candid comments on the state of crisis management today by a man whose company went through its own crisis hell earlier this year. Reporting on a panel discussion in a summary of last month’s PR Summit 2015 in The Holmes Report, Arun Sudhaman notes: […] From creativity to crisis management, via a heavyweight panel that featured communications leaders from HSBC, GM, Danish Crown and Qsoft. And it was HSBC’s Pierre Goad that caught the eye, when he candidly admitted to the bank’s failings in managing the damaging revelations about its Swiss operation earlier this year. “We don’t know how to manage a crisis in this new environment,” said Goad, adding that his nine-year-old son probably had a better […]

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TalkTalk: Is it time to RunRun?

It’s the stuff of PR nightmares – a company embroiled in its most significant crisis, one that has wider implications in society at large, with negative press and other opinion wherever you look, watch and listen; and photos (like the one in Saturday’s Telegraph, above) presenting a carefree image of its CEO looking like he or she is thinking about anything but the crisis, its effect on stakeholder groups including employees, customers and shareholders, and how to get through it to the other side. That’s a picture of UK telecommunications company TalkTalk and its CEO, Dido Harding, as fallout from the huge hack of customer data from TalkTalk’s databases continues to be headline news. What’s emerging is that the personal […]

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VW: Recalling a reputation

The Volkswagen emissions-test-cheating scandal moved on a few miles/kilometres this week with developments that saw the VW group headquarters and some employees’ homes raided by German prosecutors and criminal investigators, the CEO of the US subsidiary hauled in front of the US Congress to explain what happened (and where he admitted he knew about the cheating in 2014), finger-pointing gets underway, dire warnings emerge about potential restructuring and job losses, and a share price that has fallen by 40 percent. As the company, politicians and regulators grapple with such weighty matters, there is a milestone worth noting in this sorry tale that could be a pivot marker for Volkswagen to build a foundation for the eventual recovery of its reputation, if […]

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The value of a valuable brand

Brand consultancy Interbrand has published its latest annual report and ranking on the world’s top 100 global brands for 2015. The top 10 companies ranked by brand valuation, with the percentage difference in 2015 rank compared to Interbrand’s rank of last year, are these: Apple – $170.3bn (+43%) Google – $120.3bn (+12%) Coca-Cola – $78.4bn (-4%) Microsoft – $67.7bn (+11%) IBM – $65.1bn (-10%) Toyota – $49.0bn (+16%) Samsung – $45.3bn (-7%) GE – $42.3bn (-6%) McDonald’s – $39.8bn (-6%) Amazon – $39.8bn (+29%) There’s little surprise about the companies that are in the top 10, each of them being organizations that clearly meet Interbrand’s criteria for inclusion: A brand must be truly global, having successfully transcended geographic and cultural […]

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Can a tarnished VW emerge successfully from #dieselgate?

The global #dieselgate crisis engulfing German car maker Volkswagen may well produce significant and disruptive change in the governance and regulation of the auto industry and publicly-listed companies in that industry (likelier in Germany than anywhere else, I’d say), although it’s far from clear what the consequences and outcomes will actually be. What’s extraordinary – except, maybe it isn’t anymore – is, on the one hand, the speed with which the unravelling of VW’s reputation is happening; and on the other, the lethargy in the time it took for the CEO to fall on his sword which he finally did late yesterday. Briefly, here’s what’s happened, beautifully summed up in this image by Vox: Here’s a little more, in the […]

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