The corporation has significant duty-of-care responsibilities to ensure all their international travelers are prepared and have adequate support if they have an incident while abroad. Issues multiply when an international health incident occurs — from coordinating an evacuation of a critically-injured engineer from a work site in Angola to helping an employee decide if he or she wants to remain on assignment after a robbery in Prague.
While directed at HR professionals, this article from HREOnline.com could just as easily apply to crisis management and prevention in any field. With the very real possibility of tumultuous international relations and worldwide issues, such as swine flu, interfering with the increasingly global nature of business, there are many considerations to be taken when sending employees abroad.
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Twitter has been a fantastic crisis management tool for businesses, allowing them to provide one-on-one communication and service to more customers than ever before. For some reason, when Chicago-based Horizon Group Management LLC aka Horizon Realty Group came across the following complaint in a tweet (casually made in response to a friend’s comments) by Amanda Bonnen, they chose to forgo this route, and instead decided to sue her for $50,000!
“Who said sleeping in a moldy apartment was bad for you? Horizon realty thinks it’s okay.”
Considering the fact that Bonnen had less than 30 followers, posting this message could hardly be deemed damaging to Horizon. I can’t say the same, however, for their own lawsuit, which has unleashed a storm of negative online coverage nationwide. If you’d like to read more about this jaw-droppingly bad PR case, check out the Checkmate Public Affairs Blog, written by my friend and associate Jeff Chatterton.
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