Did the White House Blow its Crisis Communications Plan?

Crisis communications at the White House

Setting off a crisis

This hasn’t been a fun couple of weeks for President Obama. Republicans and even members of his own party are gunning for him over the IRS, AP phone records and Benghazi debacles.

Starting with the IRS, several mid-level career IRS employees in the Cincinnati office targeted conservative sounding groups like the Tea Party for extra scrutiny when considering their applications for tax-exempt status.

Apparently, their instructions for screening these requests weren’t clear – at least that’s the IRS’s defense. …Read more…

Why “Gotcha” Questions in a Job Interview Don’t Work

An interview with Bill Heyman, President and CEO of Heyman Associates, a retained executive search firm specializing in senior-level communications positions

A job interview is always stressful. What techniques do you use to help candidates relax and be more open?

We start with small talk at first and spend time getting to know someone’s personality.Job search concept in word tag cloud You get the most open and honest information when a person is comfortable, so I try to be as personable as possible at the outset. We encourage people to be their true selves, to listen carefully before they speak, but to make sure they get their points across.

I think that any interviewer who tries to make the conversation more stressful will cause the candidates to become very stiff.  They will not give their best answers and will think through the questions more than you want them to. …Read more…

Forming a Speakers Bureau to Build a Corporate Brand

An interview with Tierney Saccavino, Senior Vice President of Acorda Therapeutics

What was your goal in forming the speakers bureau for Acorda Therapeutics

meeting proiezioneAt Acorda, we have two different communications programs underway to both build Acorda’s brand and to serve our consumer communities.

Within Acorda, we have implemented a program to highlight the professional expertise and thought leadership that exists within the company. We have a roster of individuals, in addition to our CEO, who are experts in their fields and who are able to interact with the media, speak at conferences or write by-lined thought pieces. These experts represent a variety of departments – from marketing to managed markets to manufacturing to advocacy to legal. …Read more…

Presentation Lessons Learned From the Democratic National Convention

Just one week after the Republicans, the Democrats whooped it up for their convention speakers and their candidate for re-election, President Barack Obama. "Lessons Learned from the Democratic Presidential Convention"

They had the advantage of learning what worked for the GOP – and what didn’t work. As a result, the opening night speakers, in our non-partisan view, gave more polished and rousing presentations.

Do you agree? At the end of the post, we offer our final thoughts about lessons learned.

Julian Castro

Pros: The charismatic 37-year-old Mayor of San Antonio, Julian Castro, was the first night’s keynote speaker. His twin brother, Joaquin, who is running for Congress in November, introduced him. …Read more…