Communication Matters

Analysis, critique, and advice on today's hot news topics from the perspective of a Strategic PR Consultant.

Posts Tagged ‘leadership’

IN DEFENSE OF FBI DIRECTOR COMEY, A GOOD MAN. Take a deep breath, y’all.

Posted by mrsmart on October 29, 2016

apple-case-exposes-ongoing-government-rift-over-encryption-policy-2016-3

FBI DIRECTOR JAMES COMEY.

The FBI is supposed to be impartial and non-political in its discharge of its duties. I believe that’s what FBI director James Comey was attempting to show in his announcement yesterday. It landed like a bomb in the 11th hour in this hotly contested presidential election.
After constant berating from the GOP since July, and later by Mr. Donald trump, the GOP nominee, because he declined to charge Mrs. Hillary Clinton for only God knows what, Mr. Comey wanted to show his impartiality and do “the right thing.” For the GOP, yesterday, he did the right thing.
With that, Comey is once again the darling of the right. Mr. Trump changed his tune. He now calls the federal system not as rigged as he thought.
I’M HAPPY.
For that, I’m happy for my brothers and sisters, Trump’s supporters. They get another crack at Hillary Clinton’s e-mail “investigation.”
This begs the question. Would the GOP accept director Comey’s finding this time if he comes back with the same conclusion that he did in July, and not indict Hillary Clinton for her e-mails?
To be sure, for Hillary’s supporters, the timing couldn’t be worse. The media didn’t help matters.
All day the media reported wrongly that the FBI is reopening Hillary’s e-mail investigation giving her supporters unnecessary anxiety.
However, I think they too are overreacting. Reread the letter.
Director Comey just made a mistake in wording his letter and possibly its timing. The letter simply says the FBI is REVIEWING new set of e-mails they just found from a laptop and may be tied to Hillary Clinton. This laptop happens to belong to Hillary’s staff, who just happens to have been married to ex-congressman Anthony Weiner, whom they are really investigating. They want to see if there’s anything worth opening an INVESTIGATION further into Hillary’s e-mails. That’s all.
For Hillary’s supporters, take a deep breath. I think this is akin to hitting a speed bump on your way to your destination.
Emmanuel A. Smart, Strategic PR Consultant
Houston Public Relations Training Institute
Houston, TX
713-834-4138

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The Power of The Apology in Forgiveness. It works!

Posted by mrsmart on February 25, 2014

ukraineUKRAINE: RIOT POLICE KNEEL DOWN AND BEG FOR FORGIVENESS.

Contrary to popular misconceptions, apologizing in a conflict as what we just witnessed in Ukraine is neither a sign of admission of guilt nor a sign of weakness. It is in the spirit of community preservation. The unexpected outcome may be greater national unity as a result.

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JUST AS I PREDICTED, HERMAN CAIN IS DONE.

Posted by mrsmart on December 4, 2011

As I predicted when the first accuser spoke on television about Hermann Cain’s harassment, Mr. Cain is done. He says he will endorse another candidate. See below for my referenced Facebook post.

CRISIS ALERT! Herman Cain Will Hold A News Conference at 5pmET Tuesday.–NBC News. Written on November 7, 2011

A little late. However, if true, it’ll be the first good crisis management move Mr. Cain has made since his sexual harassment troubles began. The fact is, these allegations and accusers will not go away. Reporters, like sharks, smell blood in the water. They too, are going no where.

Unfortunately, Mr. Cain lost control of the issue the moment he chose denial, pontification, and evasiveness as his preferred crisis management tactics.

To have any chance of changing subjects and focusing on his 9-9-9- tax plan or anything else, he must be prepared to answer all reporters’ questions at the presser until there are no more left. Either way, he may have taken a serious body blow this afternoon from which he may not fully recover.

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Rupert Murdoch, Damaged BRAND?

Posted by mrsmart on July 21, 2011

This piece is written in response to Mr. Steve Forbes’ op/ed on the News Corp phone hacking crisis, titled “Why Rupert Murdoch Will Survive And Thrive Again.” http://blogs.forbes.com/steveforbes/2011/07/18/why-rupert-murdoch-will-survive-and-thrive-again/#respond

In his piece, Mr. Forbes compares today’s News Corp’s phone hacking crisis with Mr. Rupert Murdoch’s company’s excessive debt and almost certain bankruptcy about twenty years ago. In that crisis, Mr. Murdoch was said to have successfully applied tools of crisis management, survived, and even thrived.

Where I beg to differ with Mr. Forbes, however, is that this is different. More than finances or money, this “Mother of all CRISES” damages his most important asset, his BRAND.

Comparing the pre-internet, pre-blogs and pre-twitter excessive debt and bankruptcy “crisis,” twenty years ago, to today’s potentially felony phone hacking crisis, is comparing apples and oranges. True, the bankruptcy case may have been tough, managing its fallout, however, was straightforward. It had the key elements necessary for a successful crisis management.

It had exigency, a clearly defined crisis brought about by Mr. Murdoch’s company’s excessive debt and subsequent potential for bankruptcy. It had a leader of the conglomerate, Mr. Murdoch himself, willing to get into the “trenches” and make things right. In addition, there were heads of banks and other financial institutions with whom to communicate, ask forgiveness, and negotiate modified payment terms, and so on. This set of people had just one common interest: to ensure they got paid what was owed to them so they don’t lose their investments. Indeed, according to Mr. Forbes, Mr Murdoch met with them, acknowledged the seriousness of the issue and committed to fix what was wrong, and voila!

Unfortunately, unlike the bankruptcy crisis, this crisis has too many moving parts; too many competing interests, with too many possible outcomes. The scandal’s reaches are too long, too wide and too deep for a quick crisis resolution. Worse, it is ongoing with almost no end in sight. To say nothing of feeding frenzy from competitors who would like nothing than seeing Murdoch’s Media Empire fall.

Can Mr. Murdock survive and thrive financially? Yes. This write-up, however, is about something much more than money. It is about the risk to his BRAND. With these endless investigations, in the end, Rupert Murdoch’s BRAND may be irreparably damaged whether or not he is cleared of any wrongdoing.

Emmanuel A. Smart is President of Smart Expressions, a Strategic Public Relations and Corporate Communication firm based in Houston, TX; He teaches strategies, tactics and tools of communication, offering onsite and monthly public seminar, consulting and design services. More information, visit http://www.smartexpressions.com

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Rupert Murdoch, Damaged BRAND?

Posted by mrsmart on July 21, 2011

This piece is written in response to Mr. Steve Forbes’ op/ed on the News Corp phone hacking crisis, titled “Why Rupert Murdoch Will Survive And Thrive Again.” http://blogs.forbes.com/steveforbes/2011/07/18/why-rupert-murdoch-will-survive-and-thrive-again/#respond

In his piece, Mr. Forbes compares today’s News Corp’s phone hacking crisis, with Mr. Rupert Murdoch’s company’s excessive debt and almost certain bankruptcy about twenty years ago. In that crisis, Mr. Murdock was said to have successfully applied tools of crisis management, survived, and even thrived.

Where I beg to differ with Mr. Forbes, however, is that this is different. More than finances or money, this “Mother of all CRISES” damages his most important asset, his BRAND.

Comparing the pre-internet, pre blogs and pre-twitter excessive debt and bankruptcy crisis, twenty years ago, to today’s felony phone hacking crisis, is pure apples and oranges. In the bankruptcy case, while it may have been tough, the crisis still had key ingredients for successful crisis management.

It had exigency, a clearly defined crisis brought about by Mr. Murdock’s company’s excessive debt and subsequent potential for bankruptcy. It had a leader of the conglomerate, Mr. Murdock himself, willing to get into the “trenches” and make things right. In addition, there were heads of banks and other financial institutions with whom to communicate, ask forgiveness, and negotiate modified payment terms, and so on. These set of people had just one common interest: to ensure they got paid what was owed to them and not lose their investments. Indeed, according to Mr. Forbes, Mr Murdock met with them, acknowledged the seriousness of the issue and committed to fix what was wrong, and voila!

Unlike in the “bankruptcy” crisis, this one has too many moving parts, too many competing interests, with too many possible outcomes, very few, if any, favorable. The scandal’s reaches are long, wide and deep, and ongoing. To say nothing of feeding frenzy from competitors who would want nothing more than seeing Murdock’s Media Empire fall.

So, while Mr. Murdock may survive and thrive financially; with these endless investigations, however, his most valuable asset, his BRAND, may be irreparably damaged. That’s why Billionaire Warren Buffett is often credited with saying: “If you steal my money, I will forgive you. If you damage my reputation, I’ll never forgive you.”

Emmanuel A. Smart is President of SMART EXPRESSIONS, a Strategic Public Relations and Corporate Communication firm based in Houston, TX; He teaches strategies, tactics and tools of communication, offering onsite and monthly public seminar, consulting and design services. More information, visit http://www.smartexpressions.com

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Alaska gov is resigning. Good Luck, Ms. Palin

Posted by mrsmart on July 4, 2009

Sarah Palin resigns her post as Alaska Governor

Sarah Palin resigns her post as Alaska Governor

Lets face, competition for the GOP nomination will be brutal. Think about Huckabee, Romney, T-Paw, governors who finished their terms, some of them, two terms; and some candidates we don’t know yet.

In announcing her resignation from the governor’s office, Palin, I think, is leaving the very job she needed to continue to build on her resume so she can do better next time she tries to run for National office. Have you heard this woman articulate international policy ideas better than her ability to see Russia from her front porch?

Since leaving the national campaign, Ms Palin has done the exact opposite of what I thought she needed to do to better herself for future national political run. Read what I wrote on this blog on November 10, 2008. https://mrsmart.wordpress.com/2008/11/10/is-palin-too-far-away-3/

All I have seen her do is fight with virtually anyone who dares say anything she doesn’t like about her or her cause. From political operatives to David letterman; John Kerry, the media, etc.

Everything about her future plans is speculative for now at best. So, I just wish her the best in whatever she chooses to do.

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Is Sarah Palin Too Far Away?

Posted by mrsmart on November 10, 2008

Governor Sarah Palin (R-AK)

Governor Sarah Palin (R-AK)

Ironically, Sarah Palin’s geography, being thousands of miles away; and in a far-away time zone, may be her best asset.

Now that she is home, she can lay low for now, avoid the media as much as possible, while learning basic civic lessons she appeared not to know. If she has any future national political ambition, this is the time to get coaching by the best minds she can put together. Lord knows she needs help.

The country knows enough about her now than she can reasonably expect to improve on or correct with constant back and forth with opponents in the airwaves. Palin risks further damage to her image. She has supporters in the lower 48 who can speak on her behalf and, if necessary, respond to things that need responding to.

Hopefully better prepared, in about a year or two, just in time for the 2010 election season, she can re-emerge with media interviews. She can start on Larry king Live, get on David Letterman, etc. After that, she can then go on FOX, CNN, and the like. That’s how she can be ready for 2012 if she is interested.

As were evident during the 2008 election, short empty sound bites lost out to well thought-out ideas. Gone are the days when the intellectually challenged could just wing it in our government, and a lack of curiosity almost a badge of honor.
Originally posted as a comment by E_in_Houston_TX on Political Wire using Disqus.

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