The Internet Newsletter about Crisis Management
 Editor: Erik Bernstein
 Publisher: Jonathan Bernstein

"For Those Who Are Crisis Managers,
Whether They Want to be or Not"

2011 Jonathan Bernstein


Volume XII, Number 10

October 31, 2011  



It's always nice to clean your own house before someone else does it for you.


                           Jonathan Bernstein   




Ahh Halloween! Treats, costumes, and possibly a few tricks thrown in there as well. While holidays are a fun time, they also bring to light major concerns for community leaders and business owners that we can all learn from.

For clubs and bars - Halloween is a party holiday. Are you prepared to handle near capacity crowds safely and efficiently, including potentially disgruntled revelers? This means being in touch with your local police and fire departments beforehand, mapping out crisis plans, and having all employees ready to execute them. 

City officials - You're not only going to have the 21+ crowd headed downtown, but thousands of small children walking the residential streets, in the dark, in costumes that often interfere with vision or movement. Oh, and the vast majority aren't going to be crossing streets at the corner, they'll be going back and forth willy-nilly as the candy calls. How are you going to keep them safe?

Costume and candy makers - It wasn't long ago that the tradition of Trick-or-Treating was rocked by some twisted individuals putting things like razors into treats. Are you prepared to demonstrate that it would be impossible for such a thing to get through your factory, or would there be doubt? As for costumes, well, all it takes is someone tripping over a toga or cape to spark a lawsuit that could damage your reputation and put a dent in future sales. 

Whatever business you're in, with a close look you'll find areas that need special shoring up during holidays. Tabletop crisis simulations are one of the best way to find them while taking few resources and little time. If you haven't run one recently, today might be a good day.  Don't let the trick be on you!

As per our new format, below you'll find a summary of the best of our recent blog posts.

And as always, if you like what you see, please share it with others by using the "Forward Email" link at the bottom of the ezine and tell them to subscribe!  IMPORTANT NOTE: If you just "Forward" using your own email program's "Forward" function and your recipient thinks they're being spammed, they can click on the Opt Out link and opt YOU off the list. So use the "Forward Email" link, please. 




Thank you, and read on!


          - Erik



By Erik Bernstein

We've got plenty more new posts for you at both the Bernstein Crisis Management blog and our Crisis Management blog over at Carter McNamara's Free Management Library. The constant stream of web- and social media-based crises are providing much of our fodder, as organizations continue to ignore warning signs and neglect the basics of planning and preparation.

Here's some of the latest:

In case you hadn't heard, we're on VYou! This post takes a look at the new social media service, as well as featuring one of the first Q&A's with BCM president Jonathan Bernstein.
Erik Bernstein
Erik Bernstein

When a hot tempered exec hits "Reply All," you can be sure there's a crisis brewing! Read all about how one C-suiter pissed off the wrong mommy blogger in He Wrote WHAT?

The movie "Margin Call" follows a fictitious business through 24 hours of extremely unscrupulous crisis management. While not exactly reality, it opens up avenues for discussion of Crisis Management in the Real World.

Social media has proven to be a powerful tool in nearly every recent disaster, be it natural or man-made. In Social Disaster Management, we discuss the role that your business' social media should seek to play in the midst of a major disaster.

While it provides many, many opportunities to connect and communicate, it also has many pitfalls. That's why it's important to Watch Your Step with Social Media.

The public and media expect, and demand, near-instant answers when trouble rears its head, and will usually listen to whoever provides them, correct or not. In order to make sure you keep control of your own story, it's critical to Prepare with Dark Sites.

"Thanks to the Internet - social media, web sites, email - an organization can now suffer as much damage in one hour as used to occur in a week" - BCM President Jonathan Bernstein, on why you need Real Crisis Management.

Everyone makes mistakes. It's the act of Taking Responsibility that allows you to clean up and ensure the problem doesn't happen again.

In a guest article, PR vet Jerry Brown explains why the best way to get important messages across is to Simplify and Repeat.

Erik Bernstein is a freelance writer, BCM SEO associate, and editor of Crisis Manager.


"Manager's Guide to Crisis Management" 


Whether you're a seasoned manager, aspiring up-and-comer, or student of crisis management, Jonathan Bernstein's new book, "Manager's Guide to Crisis Management," (McGraw-Hill, 2011) will put you in control of any situation. Recently featured in a Forbes article, Amazon.com's initial stock ran out quickly, but more copies are on the way!   


Got crisis management questions? We've got answers!  


We cordially invite you, the Crisis Manager readers, to "Ask the Crisis Manager" on VYou. You send a question, and Jonathan Bernstein comes back with a unique video response for all to see.


We've had some great questions so far, and will keep doing our best to answer all submissions, so keep 'em coming! 

(aka blatant self-promotion) 


Keeping the Wolves at Bay: Media Training


What has 80+ pages of hard-hitting, entertaining and easy-to-read guidance on how to deal with both traditional and online media during times of crisis?  The answer is
Keeping the Wolves at Bay - Media Training.Book Cover JPG

The, four-color, perfect-bound, 8x10 manual is currently available both in hardcopy ($25) and PDF form ($10). Volume discounts are available; write to Jonathan Bernstein for that information.  

Here's a couple of teaser reviews for you:


Jonathan Bernstein's Keeping the Wolves at Bay is an eminently practical guidance for anyone - business leader, celebrity, politician - who must willingly or unwillingly face the glare of media attention. It appears
at a moment in time when the social media and other digital communications have upped the ante exponentially.
Bernstein's practicum on media relations takes on renewed urgency as news, gossip, and opinion now drive
public perception virally and at the speed of light.

Richard Levick, Esq.
President & CEO
Levick Strategic Communications, LLC

Even if you think you'll never, ever be interviewed by the media, buy this book and read it cover to cover. It isn't a substitute for media training. But it will give you the tools and confidence to go head to head -- and possibly even defang -- rabid reporters, blood-thirsty bloggers and social networking buffoons who are out to besmirch your good name.

Joan Stewart, The Publicity Hound 


The book and other products can be found at the

Crisis Manager Bookstore  

Want To Blog And Tweet About
Your Organization But Don't Have Time? 

Missing out on all the promotional and SEO advantages of doing so? Hire someone to be your voice...like Erik Bernstein, editor of Crisis Manager.


More info:erik@bernsteincrisismanagement.com.



GUEST AUTHORS are very welcome to submit material for "Crisis Manager." There is no fee paid, but most guest authors have reported receiving business inquiries as a result of appearing in this publication. Case histories, experience-based lessons, commentary on current news events and editorial opinion are all eligible for consideration. Submission is not a guarantee of acceptance.


JB NewErik Bernstein

Jonathan Bernstein is both publisher of Crisis Manager and president of Bernstein Crisis Management, Inc., a national crisis management public relations agency providing 24/7 access to crisis response professionals. The agency engages in the full spectrum of crisis management services: crisis prevention, response, planning & training. He has been in the public relations field since 1982, following five-year stints in both military intelligence and investigative reporting.

Write to Jonathan at: jonathan@bernsteincrisismanagement.com.

Erik Bernstein is editor of Crisis Manager and is also a writer, publicist and SEO associate for Bernstein Crisis Management, Inc.

Write to Erik at: erik@bernsteincrisismanagement.com.



All information contained herein is obtained by Jonathan Bernstein from sources believed by Jonathan Bernstein to be accurate and reliable.

Because of the possibility of human and mechanical error as well as other factors, neither Jonathan Bernstein nor Bernstein Crisis Management is responsible for any errors or omissions. All information is provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Bernstein Crisis Management and Jonathan Bernstein make no representations and disclaim all express, implied, and statutory warranties of any kind to the user and/or any third party including, without limitation, warranties as to accuracy, timeliness, completeness, merchantability, or fitness for any particular purpose.

Unless due to willful tortuous misconduct or gross negligence, Jonathan Bernstein and Bernstein Crisis Management shall have no liability in tort, contract, or otherwise (and as permitted by law, product liability), to the user and/or any third party.

Under no circumstance shall Bernstein Crisis Management or Jonathan Bernstein be liable to the user and/or any third party for any lost profits or lost opportunity, indirect, special, consequential, incidental, or punitive damages whatsoever, even if Bernstein Crisis Management or Jonathan Bernstein has been advised of the possibility of such damages.

A service of this newsletter is to provide news summaries and/or snippets to readers. In such instances articles and/or snippets will be reprinted as they are received from the originating party or as they are displayed on the originating website or in the original article. As we do not write the news, we merely point readers to it, under no circumstance shall Bernstein Crisis Management or Jonathan Bernstein be liable to the user and/or any third party for any lost profits or lost opportunity, indirect, special, consequential, incidental, or punitive damages whatsoever due to the distribution of said news articles or snippets that lead readers to a full article on a news service's website, even if Bernstein Crisis Management or Jonathan Bernstein has been advised of the possibility of such damages. Authors of the original news story and their publications shall be exclusively held liable. Any corrections to news stories are not mandatory and shall be printed at the discretion of the list moderator after evaluation on a case-by-case basis.

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