Crisis Management

Companies spend years building a brand, establishing their reputation. Then crisis hits, and overnight, CEOs and their teams are under siege. The FleishmanHillard crisis management approach, or A.R.C.™ methodology, applies a series of proven tools throughout the process to help manage reputation in the face of crisis. Our global team of senior crisis counselors is certified against the methodology – and equipped with all its proprietary tools – through our industry-leading training program. FleishmanHillard’s experts have handled diverse issues, including fatal workplace accidents, management-labor disputes, litigation, executive changes, government investigations, product failures and recalls, natural disasters, workforce reductions, and activism. In addition, we can help manage longer‑term issues and prepare for crises so that your team is ready.

What We Do

Crisis Preparedness

Our preparedness training draws on FleishmanHillard’s expansive real-world crisis management expertise to provide a client with the simulated twists, turns and pressures of a real crisis.

Crisis Management

We discover the facts, define the contextual circumstances, classify the gravity of the situation and define the operational measures needed immediately. We drive constant communication with all stakeholders, listening and responding to all issues and concerns. We work in real-time and across all traditional and social media channels.

Issues Management

Our team provides counsel steeped in real-world experience to address the spectrum of potential issues that can have a negative impact on an organization's reputation, from natural disasters to cyber security.

Litigation Communications

Litigation often follows a crisis, or it can act as the trigger that begins a crisis. FleishmanHillard’s counselors have experience managing litigation involving intellectual property, wrongful termination, harassment and discrimination.

Labor and Restructuring Communications

FleishmanHillard’s crisis specialists are experienced in managing crises involving employees, one of a company’s most important assets. Areas of expertise include labor and management issues, employee dismissals, executive changes, criminal activity and workforce reductions.

Reputation Recovery

Following an issue, our team works to monitor and modify messaging, update playbooks to prepare for future crises, and evaluate response and recovery communications.

Areas of Expertise

We cover the wide range of crisis situations, notably:
Industrial accidents and natural disasters
Data breaches and cyber security
Transportation accidents
Business continuity situations and network outages
Workplace situations (violence, executive changes, workforce reductions)
Financial crises, corruption, and malfeasance
Product failures and recalls
Special interest group attacks and labor campaigns
Regulatory and law enforcement investigations
Commercial, criminal and civil litigation


Crisis Management
  • Day 15 of Pros and Conversation Series: Crisis Planning – A Letter to CEOs

    Marjorie Benzkofer

    As we conclude our 15 Days of Pros and Conversation series today, we end on what is arguably the most important of all 2015 planning topics – crisis preparedness and the growing need for leaders to anticipate issues and to have a well thought-out strategic and tactical response plan. Especially in today’s environment, where news…

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    Ebola Where You Least Expect It

    Rory O’Connor

    Ebola continues to be a major media story around the world, which in turn has created a challenging risk communications environment for all kinds of organizations, not just those involved directly in health care. Even though the level of risk for most people of contracting the virus is minimal, that’s not the impression most people…

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    Social Media in Crises: From the War-Room to the Boardroom

    Brian West

    Israel and Palestine wage a war on-the-ground and online. Fundamentalists declare a caliphate in Syria and Iraq. Russia and the US are at each other’s throats over the ‘war’ in the Ukraine – a new cold war that is played out in traditional and social media. ISIS executes American journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff…

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  • Did the Ice Bucket Challenge Educate the C-suite on How to Manage a Crisis?

    Brian West

    CEOs all over the world are emptying buckets of ice over themselves in the name of a good cause, but has this viral phenomenon alerted them to the opportunities – and dangers – of social media in a crisis? The speed at which the ALS ice bucket challenge has built momentum and a dedicated, engaged…

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    Noblesse Oblique

    Harald Simons

    To whom is in charge; Your company deserves all the success in the world and a loyal following that loves your offering and keeps on coming back for more. But sometimes things go wrong. Your product or service can have a malfunction, it may be improperly used. This can be your fault, it can be…

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    PR Crises in China: How Apple, KFC, Maserati Can Do Better

    Brian West

    Social media has triggered a paradigm shift in managing crises and companies around the world have not recognized this threat and keep getting caught out. FleishmanHillard’s proprietary methodology – Assess. Resolve.  Control.™ - not only gives companies the best practice approach to managing crises in this always-on world but also addresses how companies can harness social…

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  • Three New Rules for Managing Crises in a Social World

    Brian West

    If you wait until you know everything, you will never say anything. New Zealand dairy producer Fonterra is the latest company to be caught out by this time-tested maxim, failing ‘the need for speed’ – one of the three new rules for managing crises in a social world. First, they have to recognize that if…

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    How Do Others Do It?

    Harald Simons

    Consultants are expected to have repositories of examples available, because we serve multiple clients and each has every license to probe us for our experience. I get this question all the time, and concede that external examples certainly give color to any given situation, but I will also argue they will rarely resolve anything. Because…

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    Crisis: Why Your Clients Need to Prepare – NOW!

    James Dunny

    Things go wrong! A basic premise of humanity is that that we can’t possibly cruise from success to success without hitting a bump along the way. This bump can take many forms but, if it is severe and especially if it is mismanaged, it can test the very foundations that a company or a business…

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  • ‘It’s Only Words’

    Harald Simons

    It’s a funny expression because any corporation that has been in the advent or middle of a crisis knows that choosing the right words can make all the difference between a quick recovery and a slow, arduous one. As crises unfold, all corporations and their leaders are tested to their core. In the middle of…

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View all Crisis Management

Most Recent

  • Day 15 of Pros and Conversation Series: Crisis Planning – A Letter to CEOs

  • Ebola Where You Least Expect It

  • Social Media in Crises: From the War-Room to the Boardroom

  • Did the Ice Bucket Challenge Educate the C-suite on How to Manage a Crisis?

  • Noblesse Oblique

  • PR Crises in China: How Apple, KFC, Maserati Can Do Better

  • Three New Rules for Managing Crises in a Social World

  • How Do Others Do It?

  • Crisis: Why Your Clients Need to Prepare – NOW!

  • ‘It’s Only Words’

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