Is My Child Safe On Your Campus?
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Is My Child Safe On Your Campus?

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This was a presentation before the Michigan Association of Community Colleges on how to respond to a crisis and what to do before their campus ever has a crisis.

This was a presentation before the Michigan Association of Community Colleges on how to respond to a crisis and what to do before their campus ever has a crisis.

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  • 1. Is my child safe on your campus? Vulnerability, risk and opportunity June 15, 2007 C aponigro P ublic R elations Inc. www.caponigro.com
  • 2.
    • EMU's Vick says he is being made scapegoat University official disputes report on death cover-up BY KRISTEN JORDAN SHAMUS, FREE PRESS EDUCATION WRITER June 14, 2007
  • 3.  
  • 4.  
  • 5.  
  • 6. The Unabomber “Ted Kaczynski ”
  • 7.
    • Established in 1995
      • Southfield, Mich. and Tampa, Fla.
    • Named one of the five best “ Issues and Crisis Management Firms” by Reputation Management
    • Named one of the United States “ Best Agencies to Work for” by The Holmes Report
    • President and CEO, Jeff Caponigro is Chairman of Board of Trustees at Central Michigan University
    • He is the author of THE CRISIS COUNSELOR: A step-by-step guide to managing a business crisis (  2000, McGraw-Hill/ Contemporary Books), named by New York-based PR WEEK magazine as one of the “10 best PR books.” The book is published in English, Chinese, Polish, Norwegian and Danish.
    Caponigro Public Relations Inc.
  • 8.
    • Expertise in:
    • Crisis-management
    • Media relations
    • Issues management
    • Reputation management
    • Public affairs/lobbying
    Caponigro Public Relations
    • Community relations
    • Employee communications
    • Media/ speaker training
    • Speech writing
    • Event marketing
    • Current clients include: Henry Ford Health System University of Michigan Aphasia Program
  • 9.
    • Vice President
    • 10 years of experience as a public relations executive, attorney and lobbyist
    • Managed a variety of crises, including: Government investigations, ambush journalism and product recalls. Counsels corporate, nonprofit and bi-national clients on public policy matters, state and federal regulatory and legislative matters, as well as issues affecting corporate and individual reputation, crisis management and the media
    • Blends legal expertise and litigation experience with deep public policy insight and strategic communications capabilities for clients in the public eye
    Background on Dan Cherrin
  • 10.
    • What is a crisis?
    • What is crisis management?
    • How vulnerable is your college?
    • The seven steps to managing a crisis.
    • What steps should you take on and off campus?
    • What can you do starting today?
    What we will cover today
  • 11.
    • Where we are vulnerable
    • How to prepare and prevent crises
    • Tips for creating a crisis management plan and in managing a crisis
    What you will take away
  • 12.
    • Any event or activity that causes significant damage to the reputation of an organization
    A crisis is …
  • 13.
    • The function that works to minimize the potential damage of a crisis and helps gain control of the situation and win back the trust of the public.
    • It is a process that is:
    • Ongoing; and,
    • Systematic.
    Crisis Management
  • 14.
    • Have a plan in place;
    • Avoid loss; and,
    • Mitigate the damage.
    Purpose of crisis management is ….
  • 15.
    • Some are catastrophic.
    • While others explode causing immediate harm.
    • A minor crisis can escalate if mismanaged.
    • While others can be handled without incident.
    Crises have many faces and can occur at any time
  • 16.
    • What are examples of a crisis that can occur on your campus?
    Crises have many faces and can occur at any time
  • 17.
    • Involving people
    Crises that can occur on any campus
    • Crime
    • Violent threats or actions by a disgruntled current/former employee or student
    • Discrimination/ harassment
    • Mentally unstable students/faculty
    • Plagiarism
    • Unexpected death of a student, professor, administrator or trustee
    • Scandals (student/professor relationships)
  • 18.
    • Funding for post-secondary education
    • Lawsuits
    • Financial mismanagement
    • Negative media coverage
    • Damaging rumors
    • Loss of funding
    • Information technology vulnerabilities
    • Labor disputes/ public demonstration
    • Tuition increases
    Crises that can occur on any campus Involving the college
  • 19.
    • Mobile media
    • Terrorism/ bomb threats
    • Structural collapse
    • Biological/chemical agent
    • Food poisoning
    • Natural disasters (power failure, tornado, flood, hurricane, tsunami, lightning)
    And, still more potential crises
  • 20.
    • Loss of life
    • Criminal and/or legal liability
    • Negative media coverage
    • Loss of credibility/ bad reputation
    • Reduction of donations
    • Decline of enrollment
    The impact -- The risks are greater than ever
  • 21. Is my child safe?
  • 22.
    • Identifying vulnerabilities
    • Preventing a crisis from occurring
    • Planning for the crisis
    • Taking the first steps after a crisis
    • Communicating during and after
    • Making adjustments
    • Earning goodwill to insulate the organization
    7 steps to effectively managing a crisis
  • 23. Jeff Caponigro’s crisis-management steps: Step 1
  • 24. Identifying and Assessing Vulnerabilities
    • A vulnerabilities audit is
      • A thorough self-inspection;
      • Designed to identify potential crises;
      • Before they occur; and,
      • Pave the way for creation of a crisis communications plan which all an organization to avoid, or at least minimize, the negative impact of such crisis.
  • 25. Identifying and Assessing Vulnerabilities
    • Step back
    • Collect data from key publics
    • Conduct a vulnerabilities analysis
    • Identify potential crises most likely to occur
    • Identify potential crises that would be most damaging
    • Report the results:
      • Recommendations for systemic change; and,
      • A list of most likely scenarios and plans for action
    • Empower students and faculty to take action to fix vulnerabilities
  • 26. Identifying and Assessing Vulnerabilities
    • Does your college have an appropriate emergency team in place?
    • Is it headed by a senior administrator?
    • Does each member have a defined role?
    • Do key team members regularly participate in emergency preparedness exercises?
  • 27.
    • Emergency Response Team
    • Creates an immediate plan in the event of an emergency to deal with operations issues
    Establish a crisis-management team
    • Crisis Management Team
    • Assists with the college community and community at large
  • 28.
    • President/Chancellor
    • Board chair
    • Vice President of Student Affairs
    • Senior public relations official
    • Human resources director
    • Department heads
    • Students
    Establish a crisis-management team
    • Chief financial officer
    • Chief legal counsel
    • Chief information officer
    • Outside legal counsel
    • PR consultant
    • Law enforcement
    • Community
    Could include…
  • 29.
    • Team responsibilities
    • Gather and share information
    • Separate and clarify the issues
    • Identify information needed
    • Identify individuals affected
    • Plan appropriate responses
    • Assign responsibility or implement the plan
    The crisis-management team
  • 30.
    • Who?
      • Students, faculty, alumni
      • First-responders, the surrounding community
    • How?
      • Town hall meetings, surveys
      • Anonymous solicitation, internet
    It can’t happen here! Identifying and assessing vulnerabilities Seek input from key publics
  • 31.
    • What is your primary area of responsibility?
    • To whom do you report?
    • Has anything occurred in your department that might be considered a problem or crisis?
    • Are there any unresolved issues in your department?
    • What can you do differently today to help reduce the risk of a crisis?
    • Where else do you think we are vulnerable?
    It can’t happen here! Identifying and assessing vulnerabilities Seek input from key publics – Key questions
  • 32.
    • Identify vulnerabilities
    • Conduct a vulnerabilities analysis:
    • - “Which crises are most likely to occur?”
    • - “Which would be most damaging?”
    • Compare lists to establish top priorities
    It can’t happen here! Identifying and assessing vulnerabilities
  • 33.
    • Identify 5-10 vulnerabilities on your campus
    Where are you vulnerable? Exercise
  • 34.
    • Open campus
    • Perhaps an urban setting
    • Employ hundreds of people
    • Substantially younger student population, under more pressure
    • Mental health of students
    • Litigious society
    • Financial pressure
    • Increased Media attention
    • Spotlight on athletic programs
    • Often the community’s largest employer
    Where are you vulnerable? In general
  • 35. Where are you vulnerable?
    • Relies heavily on technology
    • Government funding is diminishing
    • Communicating with key publics is constantly evolving
    Operations
  • 36. Where are you vulnerable?
    • Labor issues
    • Work/life balance
    • Mental health
    Employee/professional
  • 37. Where are you vulnerable?
    • Fire codes and other local laws
    • MIOSHA, Elliot Larsen, Prevailing wage and other state laws
    • OSHA, EECO and other federal laws
    • Accounting procedures
    Regulatory
  • 38. Where are you vulnerable?
    • Public opinion
    • Internet chatter
    • Community leadership
    Reputation/ brand
  • 39. Where are you vulnerable?
    • Social networks
    • Satellite radio/ MP3
    • Instant message
    • Text messaging
    • Email
    Communications
  • 40. Where are you vulnerable?
    • Most likely to occur
    • Most damaging
    Exercise
    • Identify 5-10 vulnerabilities on your campus and determine the severity of each and the likelihood that vulnerability will ever happen.
  • 41. Potential Crises/ “Damage to the college” E X A M P L E Would cause serious damage Would cause damage but could be managed Would cause little damage/ could be managed easily
    • 1) Release of a chemical agent
    • Major litigation against the college that significantly damages its reputation
    • Negative media coverage
    • Unexpected resignation of the dean or board chair
    • Terrorist cell linked to the college
    • Negative rumors about quality of education or professor
    • Sudden death of the dean, popular professor or student
    • Mismanagement of funds
    • Sexual assault on campus
    • Mentally unstable student or faculty member causes serious injury or fatality
    • Reduced funding from the state government
    • Labor dispute
    • A fire destroys the gymnasium
    • Plagiarism
    • A computer virus shuts down the campus computer system
  • 42. Categories of a Crisis Case Studies Examples Severity Level 3 2 1 2006 Duke Lacrosse Team A government intervention Allegation of impropriety Mismanagement of funds A situation that requires thoughtful implementation of the crisis communications strategy Michigan State University – 2003 Basketball Finals loss A traffic accident Protest An emergency requiring assistance from first responders but no evacuation is necessary Hurricane Katrina 2007 Shootings at Virginia Tech Natural disaster Lab explosion Fire Environmental accident Shooting An extreme emergency requiring evacuation of facilities or areas of the campus and assistance from first responders
  • 43. Jeff Caponigro’s crisis-management steps: Step 2
  • 44. Preventing Crises from Occurring
    • What can be done now to prevent the vulnerabilities from turning into crises?
    Exercise
  • 45. Preventing Crises from Occurring
    • Pay attention to warning signs
    • Get expert advice
    • Consider both preventive measures and reactive steps
    • Put policies and plans in place
    • Establish open, two-way communication
    • Build a reservoir of goodwill with each key public
    • Develop a positive reputation for quality work
  • 46. Unstable student/faculty Violence on campus Increase of crime on campus Negative media coverage, decline in enrollment Complaints of discrimination Protests, negative media coverage Elderly dean or professor Untimely death or serious injury Ignored advice from attorneys, Fines or penalties, negative media coverage, accountants or tax consultants loss of credibility / trust Sloppy environmental procedures Fines or penalties, expensive lawsuits, loss of credibility / trust Troops starting to return home Infusion of students at end of deployment Down economy Overcrowding Increased multiculturalism on campus Harassment or discrimination on campus No crisis-management plan Mismanaged crisis, negative media coverage, damaged reputation Warning Potential crisis
  • 47.
    • Based on the vulnerabilities already identified, what are some of the warning signs ?
    • For example:
    • What rumors have you heard recently?
    • How were they communicated to you?
    • Could the rumors pose a danger to your reputation?
    • How can you stop the rumors?
    Preventing Crises from Occurring Questions
  • 48. Jeff Caponigro’s crisis-management steps: Step 3
  • 49. Planning for a Crisis
    • Make a commitment in advance to planning and preparation
    • Identify and train spokesperson(s)
    • Prepare worst-case scenarios
    • Conduct simulated crises
    • Develop written materials in advance (key messages, fact sheets, Q&A)
    • Keep team active even in non-crisis times
    • Hire a qualified public relations consultant to help, if necessary
  • 50. Case Study In the wake of the recent Virginia Tech shootings, you took a closer look at the make-up of your students only to learn that 22 percent have a diagnosed mental illness, ranging from ADD to schizophrenia, depression and test anxiety.
  • 51. Jeff Caponigro’s crisis-management steps: Step 4
  • 52. The Crisis Itself
    • Identify/confirm the problem
    • Be decisive
    • Identify the publics that will be affected
    • Gather information
    • Determine core messages
    • When possible, pool all the negative news together
    • Implement the tactics of your plan and communicate with key publics
  • 53. Case Study Professor Paulson is a well-loved professor of writing. He has been a professor for over 30 years and consistently voted as the most-liked teacher. One day, a forensics student was conducting some research only to learn that Professor Paulson is actually Professor Pierson – a registered sex-offender in another state.
  • 54. Jeff Caponigro’s crisis-management steps: Step 5
  • 55.
    • Identify who you need to communicate with and how (students, faculty, staff, the community, alumni, government, parents)
    • Isolate the crisis
    • Identify key messages
    • Anticipate questions and think through the answers
    • Train your spokesperson in both content and technique
    • Work with the news media
    Communicating During and After a Crisis
  • 56.
    • Lie, mislead or cover-up
    • Say “No comment”
    • Comment “off the record”
    • Give your opinion
    • Speculate on what happened
    • Attempt to inject humor
    • Tell a reporter what he or she should be writing about
    DON'T
  • 57.
    • Say “I’m not allowed to speak for the company”
    • Be rude
    • Blame anybody
    • Say more than is necessary
    • Suggest you know more than you do
    • Meet with a reporter offsite later
    • Be pressured by a reporter
    DON'T
  • 58.
    • Learn about the media in your community
    • Be responsive -- silence provokes suspicion
    • Be courteous and professional
    • Keep a record of contact with a reporter
    • Stay calm
    • Demonstrate compassion and concern
    DO
  • 59.
    • Be prepared with one or more core messages
    • Direct the reporter to the appropriate person
    • Keep contact phone numbers updated
    • Follow up with the company’s media contact person
    • Remember – your organization will be judged by your actions
    DO
  • 60. Case Study To close an estimated $800-million gap in the state budget, institutions of higher education will not receive the level of funding they expected in previous years. In addition, with a stagnant economy alumni donations are down and the colleges cash reserves are quickly being depleted. The college is left little choice to increase tuition, and charge for ancillary services, colleges are left to cut programs and students are forced to increase their student loans.
  • 61.
    • What news outlets cover your college?
    • Which reporters cover your college?
    • What are your key messages?
    Questions
  • 62. Jeff Caponigro’s crisis-management steps: Step 6
  • 63.
    • Begin immediately
    • Consider adjusting level of communication, refining key messages, using spokespersons in a different way
    • Work to build back up the goodwill equity from each key public
    • Begin the crisis management process over again
    Monitoring and making adjustments
  • 64.
    • Are we communicating effectively?
    • Who is the most and least supportive?
    • Are our key messages being understood?
    • What criticisms are we receiving and what should be done to respond to them?
    • Can we take the information to build support in the community?
    In what ways should the information be used?
  • 65. Jeff Caponigro’s crisis-management steps: Step 7
  • 66. Insulating Your Business
    • Build support from those important to the success of the college -- Goodwill
    • Each year assess your reputation
    • Establish a crisis-management culture in your organization
    • Each year conduct a vulnerabilities assessment
    • Update plans and materials
    • Provide several ways for input and feedback
    • Make the protection and maintenance of your college’s reputation among the highest priorities
  • 67.
    • Internal
    • Surveys
    • Student/faculty advisory group
    • Student/faculty appreciation events
    Public relations activities – internal
    • External
    • External newsletter
    • Externally focused blog
    • Positive media coverage
    • Establish reputation through goodwill
  • 68.
    • What are 5 things you learned today to prevent or mitigate crises occurring at your college?
    What you should consider doing today Exercise
  • 69.
    • Establish a crisis team and meet regularly
    • Integrate crisis planning in standard operations
    • Conduct media training
    • Look for the warning signs and establish an early warning system
    • Review existing plans
    • Get to know your students and faculty
    • Organize a crisis simulation
    • Establish a relationship with a PR agency
    • Share information
    What you should consider doing today
  • 70. Crisis management in a viral world…
    • Be honest;
    • Be thorough;
    • Be everywhere; and,
    • Be prepared.
  • 71. Crisis management in a viral world …
    • Traditional media, including newspapers, magazines, radio and television have expanded into downloadable talking newspapers and personalized magazines, satellite radio and 24-hour cable news networks
    • The Internet offers near instantaneous access to news, images and commentary through search engines, email, blogs, and other social networking sites such as YouTube and Flickr
    • Managing the flow of information in a crisis is now more difficult
    • Electronic witnesses distribute news as it happens
    • Traditional reporters have been replaced by citizen journalists
    • Examples: Jet Blue, London Tube Bombing
  • 72. Crisis management in a viral world …
    • Be first to respond
    • Respond often to improve searchability
    • Have others respond on your behalf to boost credibility
    • Optimizing for keywords
    • Monitor Internet
  • 73.  
  • 74. Questions “ There can’t be a crisis next week … my schedule is already full.” -- Henry Kissinger
  • 75. Daniel Cherrin (248) 355-3200 [email_address] C aponigro P ublic R elations Inc. www.caponigro.com
  • 76. Case Study No. 1 The library is populated by students day and night. Some leave their bags at a table while they go to lunch or meet in a study group. On this particular day, a student’s backpack sits untended for three hours, until someone notices a phosphorous smell emerging from it.
  • 77. Evolution of social networks
    • Paul Revere – The British are coming
    • Reuters began the first news service in 1851 using pigeons to transmit stock quotes
    • Replaced by the telegraph and transmitted news in hours
    • Fax machines
    • 1980s CNN took news 24/7
    • Email and internet in the 1990’s
    • Cell phones in the 1990s
    • Blogs, video phones today
    • # of blogs/podcasts
    • Blog impact with swift boat veterans for truth and kryptonite Lock and Pen
  • 78. Corporate social responsibility People invet in companies they believe in
    • An efffective CSR program hcan resuce critical risk
      • Destruction of shareholder value
      • Disruption of management
      • Distraction of employees
      • Dimunition of brand equity
      • Disruption of supply chain
      • Deterioration of customer relationship