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Crisis Management Today

June 15, 2017

In The Headlines

Avoiding Social Media Turbulence and PR Disasters: Airline CEOs Speak Out on Crisis Communications

In the midst of a crisis, it is not enough to simply ‘show empathy’ or apologize for the resulting distress or disruption. If words are not aligned with actions, an ‘apology’ is simply empty rhetoric.


Never Tell a Journalist It's Not a Story

Journalists are going to ask difficult questions and the important thing is to just be pleasant, not patronizing.

Don’t Get Too Obsessed with Recent Airline Customer Service Incidents – There are Bigger Sharks in the Risk Waters

It's always a careful walk when brands and companies make judgment calls and get involved in issues around race, gender, nationality and politics – but never greater than right now in divided America.

Our Perspective

Crisis Leadership: Five Principles for Managing the Unexpected

The timeliness and effectiveness of an organization’s response in a crisis often determines how it fares afterward. A strong emphasis on readiness, preparation and follow-up can help organizations stay ahead of potential threats.

"Why are companies so often caught unaware? It turns out that the events that create crises are usually those which most people have trouble taking seriously - that is, events with a low probability but a high cost. We tend to treat low-probability events as if they were impossible. Instead of preparing for them, we ignore them. "

James Surowiecki, The New Yorker


6/19   American Public Power Conference
6/19   Not-for-Profit Leadership Conference
6/22   Bober Markey
6/23   Idaho Municipal Attorneys Association
7/24   Faith-Based Security Summit
8/2     Summit County Educational Resource Center
8/23   Federal Transit Authority Academy /Cleveland State 
8/23   Maui Municipal Lawyers Association


Hennes Communications Wins
2 Silver Anvil Awards

The Silver Anvils are the Pulitzer Prizes of our industry.

We won two.  And we were finalist for Best in Show.

Thanks to our client Destination Cleveland for allowing us to be part of the team that created the campaign showcasing Cleveland to the world during last year’s Republican National Convention.  Our joint efforts were recognized last week with two Silver Anvil Awards, presented by the Public Relations Society of America. For complete info about these awards, click here

To see an exciting video about Cleveland and our collective efforts during the Republican National Convention, click here.

Meet Our Crisis Management

Howard Fencl

Howard Fencl is vice president of Hennes Communications. His crisis management experience includes helping clients deal with accusations of criminal behavior, intellectual property disputes, regulatory scrutiny, labor issues, sudden leadership changes, product recalls and other high-stakes reputation issues. 

Prior to joining Hennes Communications, he served as assistant news director at Cleveland's NBC affiliate, WKYC-TV (a Gannett/TEGNA station). He served as a VP at Edward Howard & Co. (now Fahlgren Mortine), serving a diverse client base including Nokia, Sony Ericsson, Rubbermaid, Ben Venue Laboratories and The Cleveland Clinic. For more than a decade, he also worked as television news producer and executive producer for WKYC-TV and WEWS-TV in Cleveland and WBNS-TV in Columbus. Notably, he won a regional Edward R. Murrow Award for his role in leading WKYC's breaking news coverage of the Chardon, Ohio, school shootings in 2012.  A graduate of Denison University, he received his M.A. at Hiram College and is immediate past president of the Cleveland Association of Phi Beta Kappa.


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Short Takes

This Soccer Club Has Everything You'd Want...Except Soccer
New York Times
A Photo of James Comey Takes the Internet by Storm
New York Times
3 Habits That Detract From Your Credibility, And How To Avoid Them

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