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Reputation Management Training: three top tips

Reputation management training is on everyone’s lips these days.


Because in the age of 24/7, all-consuming social media, there’s always a storm brewing somewhere.

The potential for a business-altering crisis lurks around every corner.

Just ask Co-op Live Arena. Or P&O Ferries. Or Starbucks.

Your company may be smaller than those brands. The challenges, however, are just as real.

Read on for three tips on managing your reputation when a crisis hits.

1. Establish the facts

Reputation management training, rob maclean leads a course pink elephant communications

This is an often overlooked piece of a reputation management puzzle.

Emotions are running high.

There are a lot of personalities in the room.

The first step, before publishing anything, is to establish the facts of the crisis.

Separate what you know from what you still need to find out.

Once you have your facts, divide them into what can be made public and what must stay private.

Now you’ve got clear guidelines for what you can say publicly.

2. Speak out quickly – and often

Reputation management training, andrew mcfarlan leads a course for pink elephant communications

What happens if there’s a sustained period of silence during a crisis?

It’s like a vacuum: it gets filled with rubbish.

The media have column inches to fill, and broadcast hours to fulfil.

They need someone to say something.

We’d much rather that it were you than a competitor, or a disgruntled neighbour.

Or worse, an outsider with even less knowledge of the situation.

This is why it’s vital you speak out, and do so often.

Keep people updated, even if it’s simply to say there’s yet to be anything new.

That way, you control the narrative.

3. Use the three Rs

Reputation management training, three rs, pink elephant communications

This is the key to a proper apology.

It’s what we call the Three Rs.

It goes like this:

  • Regret: say sorry.
  • Reason: explain what happened.
  • Remedy: explain what you’re doing to make it better.

Often, those affected by high-profile incidents simply want an apology.

They want someone to say they’re sorry.

Before any lawyers jump on me, you can use the word ‘sorry’ to empathise.

If I’m greeted by my next-door neighbour who tells me their child is in hospital, the first thing I’ll say is:

“I’m so sorry to hear that.”

You can do the same if something has gone wrong in your business.

Reputation Management Training

Reputation management training, bill mcfarlan on a training course

We’ve run courses since 1989 for companies preparing for the worst.

Whether from our Glasgow studios, online, or at your offices around the world.

We’re at 27 countries and counting.

Working with our team of experts, we’ll throw you into a realistic crisis.

We’ll see how you handle the press. We’ll analyse how you deal with members of the public.

And we’ll have a lot of fun along the way.

If this sounds like something your business needs, email us today.


Colin Stone leads Pink Elephant’s reputation management training.

Read more about him here.


Reputation management training blog written by Colin Stone.
Reputation management training blog edited by Maxine Montgomery.
All photos in reputation management training blog by Pink Elephant Communications.

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