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"

2013 Jonathan Bernstein

It's 2013 and the Crises Keep on Comin'  

Volume XIV, Number 1

January 16, 2013    


The significant problems we face cannot be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them.


                              -- Albert Einstein      





Facebook's "Graph Search" was unveiled yesterday, and if it works as Zuckerberg and Co. say it does then it will enable users to search and sort social recommendations or reviews in an unprecedented manner.

What the development of Graph Search represents is yet another step towards the devaluing of traditional, profit-based review pages like Yelp, and with that comes an increased need to (hold on...this may come as a shock to some) actually provide quality service.

Crisis management and customer service have always been intertwined, but whereas in the past negative reviews from amateurs would only merit a response under certain circumstances, emerging services like Graph Search will make discovering exactly what trusted peers think of an organization and reading first-hand about their experiences as simple as typing in a short phrase and hitting Enter.

In short, one wall post bashing your organization could, quite literally, cost you sales or contracts on a large scale as it repeatedly appears in social searches.

Nearly three out of four shoppers already consult online reviews before making purchase decisions, and you can bet that any business owner worth their salt is doing some serious searching before shelling out for B2B services.

If you don't currently consider clear communication and above-and-beyond customer service important, I'd strongly advise you to reconsider.

If you like what you see in this ezine, please share it with others by using the "Forward Email" link at the bottom of the ezine and tell them to subscribe! 

(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.


          - Ed.
By Erik Bernstein
Already 2013 has brought us a wealth of stories to write about, and we'll keep covering the best, worst and most current in crisis management all year long.

Want to talk about something you read on our blogs? We welcome comments, or even better hit that little Twitter button on the page and tag your tweet with @bernsteincrisis or @nomorecrisis. We're listening!

Here's a rundown of recent posts from the Bernstein Crisis Management blog and the Management Library Crisis Management blog:

Whole Foods Talks Sewer Sludge examines the self-proclaimed natural foods supermarket's response to the controversy surrounding the use of biosolids or, as activists call it, "sewer sludge," to fertilize farmland where produce is grown.

There's no room for empty promises or double talk in today's business climate. You have to Get Real with Crisis Communications and live up to your words, or explain very clearly exactly why you couldn't. Do otherwise, and you'll have a load of angry stakeholders on your hands.

Sexism and Crisis Management. Even though the former has been proven repeatedly to create a need for the latter, organizations continue to make the mistake of thinking it's OK. Computing powerhouse ASUS was the latest to run afoul of stakeholders, drawing the ire of both women and men because of a blatantly sexist tweet.

Along with new technology, every year brings a fresh wave of cybersecurity risks. In Cybersecurity & Crisis Management in 2013, we look at a selection from Cyberheist's predictions for the coming year that will have the greatest impact on your crisis management planning.

One comment from a member of the Mars rover team led to major media hype, which quickly turned sour when they realized there was nothing to get excited about. The lesson? Watch What You Say...especially when reporters are within earshot!

A case study, from colleague Tony Jaques, regarding a journalistic scandal in the science world sparked the post Dishonest Journalism Creates Crisis Management Pitfalls. Inside, we looks at how organizations can best protect themselves from reputation and even financial damage caused by dishonest, unethical or simply inaccurate reporting.

Surveys show that almost 74% of consumers are conducting online research before making purchase decisions. This means the opinions of bloggers, Yelpers, Tweeters can and will decide whether people spend their money with you, or another business. Because of this, it's crucial to know how to do Crisis Management for Negative Online Reviews.

HR - A Key Crisis Management Component breaks down why your human resources department is one of your most valuable assets when it comes to handling crises, and explains how to maximize its effectiveness.

Orica Takes Medicine the Hard Way, a guest post from Antoni Lee, Crisis Manager reader and managing director of Australian communications firm Rhetorica, is a case study involving explosions, airborne chemicals, and a damaging lack of crisis communications.

Many people brush it off as no big deal, but there's plenty of proof that Flu Season Creates Crisis Management Needs. Statistics show nearly 111 million workdays are lost to the flu every year. Is your organization prepared to face that hurdle, or are you risking a business disruption?

Erik Bernstein is a freelance writer, editor of Crisis Manager, and Social Media Manager for Bernstein Crisis Management

We Are Giving Away Business!!


Did that get your attention? Bernstein Crisis Management has been blessed for some time with more work than I can handle on my own, so the expert contractors in my Crisis Management Database have been getting more and more referrals lately and/or brought in as my subcontractors.  That's the virtual business model I've had since 1994, and today that model is widely accepted and appreciated by our clients.  So, if you have a crisis management-related business and would like to be considered for my Database, please write to me!  - Jonathan 


The Bernsteins Available to Deliver Free Guest Lectures


Jonathan alone, or the team of Jonathan and Erik Bernstein, are available at no charge to deliver guest lectures to college classes via Skype or Google Hangout. We've already conducted several with our friend Dr. Janice Frates at Cal State University Long Beach, and are ready to expand our offering to any college professor. All you need at your end is a single computer with webcam and a strong broadband connection. Contact us for more info!


Attention Corporate Boards of Directors (and those who serve them). 


If you're connected with a corporate board of directors in some way and think that board would benefit from having a veteran crisis management pro amongst its membership, please contact me. -- Jonathan


(aka blatant self-promotion) 


Expanded Crisis Manager Bookstore 


We've recently expanded the Crisis Manager Bookstore to include offerings from esteemed colleagues like Melissa Agnes, Gerald Baron, Chris Syme and Jim Lukaszewski that cover topics from crisis communication and traditional PR to social media and cutting-edge crisis management.  We'll be adding other authors we admire in the weeks ahead. 

Visit the new Crisis Manager Bookstore to see all of the  material available now!



Keeping the Wolves at Bay: Media Training


Book Cover JPG

Reflecting a significant change in the book-selling marketplace, we have reduced the cost of this popular media training manual from $49 to $25 for the hard copy and from $29.95 to $10 for the PDF.


Head to the Crisis Manager Bookstore for more information and/or to purchase.





Manager's Guide to Crisis Management



Whether you're a seasoned manager, aspiring up-and-comer, or student of crisis management, Jonathan Bernstein's textbook, Manager's Guide to Crisis Management (McGraw-Hill, 2011) will put you in control of any situation. 






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 Social Media Manager 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.

In This Issue
Just A Thought
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